Remnants of dirt, debris, and soap that are not rinsed down the drain can harden on the surface of a bathtub or shower, forming a residue. Limiting the amount of residue is important because mildew often grows in areas where residue is not properly removed. Also, areas that are prone to water infiltration should be regularly inspected and repaired as necessary.
White film or mildew will form on the surface of your bathtub or shower as well as on the curtains and doors if not cleaned on a regular basis (monthly at a minimum). Wiping down the surface with a dry towel after each use will limit the amount of residue, but proper cleaning should still be performed.
Water and building materials do not generally mix well. When a building material such as grout remains in contact with water for an extended period of time, mildew growth and other damage can occur. Also, due to the possibility of damage and deterioration through normal use, cleaning is not the only maintenance required. To prevent water damage outside of your bathtub or shower, the following inspections should be completed.
1. Seal the tile and grout twice a year to add additional protection from mildew growth caused by sustained moisture.
2. On a yearly basis check for loose and/or damaged tile and missing and/or cracked grout. Make repairs as necessary. This will prevent water from infiltrating behind finishes and into the wall cavity
Bathtubs and showers that have doors, whether they swing or slide, should be regularly inspected for standing water along the base or track of the door. If standing water is present, your drainage system within the track assembly is not working properly. Small holes should be drilled on an angle into the track in a manner that allows water to drain back into the bathtub or shower unit. This will help to minimize the growth of mildew along the track and keep your door working properly.
You’d think that with all the soap and water that flow through sinks that they’d be perpetually clean—but that’s not so. Soap deposits, food stains, rust, and water spots will all build up if you don’t stay on top of them.
Stainless steel sinks: For stainless steel sinks use a nontoxic all-purpose cleaner, or try full-strength distilled white vinegar on a sponge. Never use abrasive cleaners or steel wool. If a spot needs scrubbing, use a little baking soda on a damp sponge. Rust stains can be removed by rubbing with a paste of two parts baking soda to one part water, then rinsing well.
Porcelain sinks: Baking soda on a damp sponge also works for porcelain sink cleaning. As with stainless steel, avoid abrasive cleaners. An ecofriendly cream cleanser or a nontoxic, nonabrasive cleaner like Bon Ami will help with any difficult stains.
Chrome sinks: Chrome faucets and fixtures can be cleaned with a little club soda, a solution of equal parts distilled white vinegar and water, or a nontoxic all-purpose cleaner. If they are very grimy, try putting a few drops of a citrus essential oil on your cleaning toothbrush and scrub.