Whether you like it or not eventually you are going to have to clean your bathroom.
Because bathtubs are the largest items they often go unmanaged for a couple weeks and during that time soap scum and mold can buildup. To reduce the hassles here are a few tips to making the chore a little easier.
Probably the worst culprit in your bathroom is the non slip bath mat. Flexible made of a porous rubberized plastic the mat is a great place for mold to grow. Add to that moisture that remains under the mat for extended periods and it makes you wonder if slipping would be better then cleaning one .. but of course thats not true so you have to use one.
When tackling your bathtub you can start in the morning after your shower.
Fill the tub with water about 1/4 way or at least enough to cover the mat with a couple inches of water. If you are lucky enough to have a soap ring then fill the tub above that mark.
What you are going to do is soak the tub while you are at work, school or just doing other things.
Pull the mat from the bottom of the tub and flip it over in the water.
Add to the water about 2 cups of regular bleach (do this after you are done filling with water and have flipped the mat over you do not want to splash bleach).
If you have soap scum add a 1/2 cap full of liquid cloth washing detergent.
Now allow the solution to work its magic. The longer the better but after about 2 hours the black mold and scum should 90% gone.
Now that most of the disgusting work is done drain the tub and use the shower head to wash the mat. A brush can be used along with spray detergent to clean off any residue that remains.
Cleaning the sides and feature areas of your tub will take a little elbow grease. You will be surprised that many dollar store cleaners that say they are specifically for removing soap scum will work pretty well in your tub.
Turn on the fan in your bathroom so you don’t breath the cleaner fumes.
Spray the cleaner from the top of the stall walls down to the tub floor. Now just like you let the bleach do its work you should walk away for 10 minutes. When you come back repeat the application and remember to hit the shower head especially if you see white calcium buildup on the jets.
Clean the largest areas with an old wash cloth or soft rag. Fiberglass tubs are prone to scratching if you use an abrasive sponge. Remember abrasive sponges are for pots and pans not for the bathtub and Brushes are for toilets.
When you get to areas that have built-up scum that is difficult to remove you can use a special sponge that does have a special cleaning surface that is soft enough so it will not scratch the surface of your tub. This is a special sponge so keep it only for this use. If you use it for something else and dirt gets in it then the dirt could cause scratches.
Chrome and metal surfaces seem to clean best with a foam spray cleaner. Apply a small amount and allow it to sit until the foam disappears then rinse and wipe away the cleaner for a nice shine. If necessary you may want to use a metal cleaner without abrasive.
Let the cleaners work for you. You don’t want to apply cleaner and then wash it right down the drain. You are just wasting money and making the job harder.
The longer it sits while it is still wet the better it will work. On the sides of your tub and the walls above this may mean a couple applications and light mists over a 20 to 30 minute time period until the cleaner has time to penetrate and loosen soap scum.
Fiberglass scratches easy so be gentile with it. Soft cloths and special sponges are necessary to protect your investment.
Enamel tubs are just about the same as fiberglass and should not see abrasive cleansers or scrubbing.
Tile tubs can take a little more abuse but brushes can destroy the grout and will result in leaks.
Finding the right cleaners is really trial and error.
Bleach does the best job of removing mold but when it comes to general cleaning start with the cheap stuff and work your way up if you need to.
For a real inexpensive general purpose cleaner try filling a empty liquid clothes washing detergent bottol with water. The amount of soap that remains in the container will make about a gallon of good general purpose cleaner that can be used to refill empty spray bottles.
The YouRepair Store carries a full line of cleaning products at discount prices.