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A good grout cleaner whitens grout and removes mold, mildew, bacteria, and stains without causing damage to the delicate, porous material.
We researched dozens of grout cleaners and had our testers use the best options for a month, using them on surfaces around their homes to evaluate effectiveness, smell, and formulation. Our top choice, the Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout Cleaner, has a fast-acting formula and a mild scent and is suitable for use on marble and ceramic surfaces.
Here are the best grout cleaners.
Our Top Picks
Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout CleanerBuy at Amazon
A few sprays of this formula will have your shower walls looking like new again, plus it's gentle enough to use on marble.
Best Overall, Runner-Up
Clean-eez Cleaning Products Grout-Eez Super Heavy-Duty Grout CleanerBuy at Amazon
With just a five-minute soak time and some light scrubbing, this formula sinks into your grout and effectively gets stains out.
Soft Scrub Gel Cleanser with BleachBuy at Amazon
The bleach in this cleaner's formula gets out deep, set stains and kills germs at the same time.
Best Overall: Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout Cleaner
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 32 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Tile and ceramic cleaner
Solution is safe on marble
Has a milder scent
Doesn't work on calcium, mold, or water spots
Tough grime may require more effort
Who else recommends it? Bustle and Best Reviews also picked the Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout Cleaner.
What do buyers say? 71% of 8,700+ Amazon reviewers rated this 4 stars or above.
This grout cleaner from Black Diamond attacks grease, oil, and soap deposits with a vengeance, and its acid-free formula is safe for ceramic, marble, and porcelain tiles. Its fast-acting formula and versatility make it our top pick for best grout cleaner.
To use it, just spray it on your surface, wait one to three minutes, and then use a grout brush to loosen the grime. From there, you can use your shower head to rinse the remaining product and grime off. Our tester said the process took about 30 minutes, and worked better than they anticipated, especially since they were facing tough grime.
Notably, in these cases, it can also be used with a grout steam cleaner for extra cleaning power. It's not designed to remove mold or calcium deposits, but can tackle basic stains with a bit of elbow grease. Ultimately, our tester gave it a 5-star rating for performance, bottle design, and value, and noted that it has a milder smell than other cleaners on the market. Just know: you must wear protective eyewear, as well as gloves, when using this product.
If you're looking to remove grime from your bathroom and still have time for other weekend activities, this is the grout cleaner for you.
"The dirt and mildew scrubbed away relatively quickly, and when we gave it a final once over with a soft sponge and a few sprays from the showerhead, the difference was astounding.."—Rachel Ellison, Product Tester
Best Overall, Runner-Up: Clean-eez Cleaning Products Grout-Eez Super Heavy-Duty Grout Cleaner
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 3 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Tile and grout cleaner
Safe on porcelain and ceramic
Short soaking time
Nozzle design is not great for walls
Fumes can be overwhelming
When it comes to grout cleaners, this one from The Floor Guys received 4-star ratings from our tester for its performance, smell, and overall value. Its name says it all: Grout-Eez. This professional-strength formula is about as easy to use as it gets—just spray it on, wait five minutes, then wipe away any lurking dirt and grime, including grout haze you might have post-grouting. Grout-Eez is safe for both ceramic and porcelain tile (Warning: It is not safe for natural stone.) and the only change it'll make to your grout is it'll bring back its original color.
Now, our tester does note that the bottle design is most ideal for floors, not walls. The nozzle top is a bit limiting, which is why the bottle received a 3-star rating. Otherwise, this product is as promised, as long as you follow the safety instructions on the back of the bottle. They note to wear protective eye gear, as well as gloves, when using the grout cleaner, since it contains a strong acid and commercial detergent. In addition, crack a window in your space, before conquering your grout's grime.
"With light-handed brush strokes, grime pilled up and dispersed down the wall. After just one pass, all of the rust-colored stains were easily lifted and the tiles looked almost like they did when we first moved in."—Rachel Ellison, Product Tester
Best Multi-Purpose: Soft Scrub Gel Cleanser with Bleach
Type: Gel cleanser | Amount: 28.6 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Sink and shower cleaner
Requires minimal scrubbing
Non-abrasive scrub is good for most surfaces
Good for countertops, showers, and toilets
May not fully disinfect
Some may not like the smell
For a cleaner that will leave your grout gleaming and tackle the rest of your house too, customers swear by Soft Scrub With Bleach Gel. The gel formula is great for getting deep into those crevices, and leaves them looking brighter and whiter (that is if they were white before). The bleach in the formula works to kill germs on everything from your kitchen countertops to your shower and toilet.
It’s non-abrasive, so it’s safe for most surfaces, but it’s tough enough to get out tough stains like coffee. To use, you apply, rub and rinse, letting it sit longer for tougher stains. Customers swear by it, saying it leaves grout and other surfaces looking like new.
Best with a Whitener: ZEP Grout Cleaner and Brightener
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 32 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Floor grout
Safe on white and colored grout
Mild scent compared to other formulas
Not for use on metals, marble, and other natural stones
Can't remove mold, calcium, rust, or limescale
For grout that's lost its oomph, try this formula from Zep. A grout cleaner and brightener in one, it promises to have your grout as white as white can be in just minutes, with little to no scrubbing required.
It’s not safe for all surfaces—it's not recommended for marble, stone, metal, or Corian—but it is bleach-free, so you don’t have to worry about it discoloring colored grout. Customers say it works better than expected, doesn’t have an overpowering scent, and that it’s a bargain for the price. One reviewer on Homedepot.com went so far as to say they think it’s underpriced, it works so well.
Best for Showers: Home Armor Instant Mold and Mildew Stain Remover
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 32 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Hard, non-porous surfaces
Can be used on a variety of surfaces
Requires minimal scrubbing
Good price point
Very strong chemical smell
Not a general bathroom cleaner
When it comes to shower grout, you need a tough product that can take on stubborn mold and mildew, like this spray from Home Armor. Its bleach-based formula doesn't require any scrubbing, and can just be sprayed on, left for three to four minutes, and then wiped off with a paper towel or cloth. Notably, it does have a very strong chemical smell, so when you're going through your cleaning process, open up your window wide. Like other grout cleaners, you should also take safety precautions like wearing your rubber gloves, putting on protective eyewear, and avoiding contact with your skin, since this product's ingredient list is very chemical-heavy.
Our tester tried out the Home Armor spray on their walk-in style shower, faucets, countertops, and even an electric toothbrush base. It was ultimately the most effective in the bathroom, and wasn't a suitable fit for cleaning kitchen tile grout. All in all, it was given a 5-star rating for its bottle design and value, and its performance was quick to follow with a 4-star rating—only being cut down for its lack of versatility.
"After three weeks of daily shower use, the slimy feeling has yet to return on the areas where we used the spray, making us think it’s helping delay new mildew re-development."—Suzie Dundas, Product Tester
Best for Kitchen: Krud Kutter KK32 Original Concentrated Cleaner/Degreaser
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 32 fluid ounces | Intended Use: Kitchen degreaser
Good for cleaning a variety of surfaces
One bottle lasts a long time
Hardly any scent
Requires a bit of scrubbing
On the expensive side
With its no-nonsense name, Krud Kutter is designed to cut through all the grime in your kitchen grout, and beyond. While it works on almost any surface, including denim fabric, driveways, and even engines, it works especially well on the tile found in kitchens because it contains a degreaser. For tile and grout, it's recommended you use the product at full strength. However, it should be diluted when using it on a surface other than tile and grout.
To use this grout cleaner, you spray it on and wipe it off. No rinsing is required, but our tester notes it did require a bit of scrubbing—much like other cleaners. They were ultimately impressed with how it almost eliminated all of the cooking buildup and grease on their cabinetry, and was more effective than a basic cleaner at ridding their stovetop of grime. While the product is a bit pricier, it doesn't have a strong smell and seems like it will last a long time, as well.
"It removed nearly all of the grease, leaving the kitchen cabinets smooth and clean. The Krud Kutter is undoubtedly going to become our primary cleaner for grease stains or cooking build-up."—Suzie Dundas, Product Tester
Best for Floors: TECH 128 oz. Grout Cleaner
Type: Liquid spray | Amount: 128 ounces | Intended Use: Colored grout
Good on all types of grout
Will not bleach colored grout
No chemical fumes and fragrance-free
Requires a bit of scrubbing
May not be ideal for the heaviest floor dirt
With the pitter-patter of little feet, big feet, and those of pets, floor grout can be some of the grimiest in the house. That means you want something tough, but also safe, because, of course, all those feet are precious. TECH grout is 100 percent odorless and 100 percent biodegradable, yet it promises to get out your toughest grout stains. To use, you spray it on, scrub with the included brush, then rinse or mop. No residue is left behind, just grout that looks cleaner and brighter.
Customers say that while it may take a bit of elbow grease to scrub out the stains, the results are worth it.
If you're looking for a fast-acting grout cleaner that will deliver powerful results on even the most stubborn grout stains, the Grout-Eez Super Heavy-Duty Grout Cleaner is perfect for you. But if you want a more basic, acid-free grout cleaner that penetrates grease, oil, and soap stains effectively, pick up the Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout Cleaner.
How We Tested the Grout Cleaners
To make this list, members of The Spruce's editorial team tested four grout cleaners in their homes for performance, smell, bottle design, and overall value. Over the course of a month, they tried out the grout cleaners on their individually recommended surfaces—whether it be shower tile, kitchen grout, or even a grime-covered electric toothbrush holder—and tested their ability to remove tough buildup, stains, and light messes with and without scrubbing.
To test the bottle design, they cleaned floors, walls, countertops, and smaller items, and noted how easily they could put the product where they needed it to be. During this process, and after, testers noted the strength of the smell and how long it lasted in their home. When considering safety, they studied the product label, ingredients, and safety precautions that must be followed by the user. To conclude, they rated each product's value based on the job it could perform at its price point, and if the product would need to be refilled or replaced in a quick manner.
What to Look for in a Grout Cleaner
The most important thing you want from a grout cleaner is, of course, clean grout. How strong of a cleaner you need depends on how dirty your grout is. If you’re just looking to prevent gunk from building up on grout that’s already reasonably clean, then a milder cleaner may be fine. However, if your grout is covered in tough stains and deposits, you’ll want to choose a stronger one.
Different types of grout require different types of grout cleaners. There are cleaners designed specifically for shower or kitchen grout, while others can be used on any type of grout. Consider the surface surrounding the grout, as well, because some cleaners can damage stone and marble.
You also want to consider how much elbow grease is involved. With some cleaners, you simply spray on and wipe off, while others will take a fair amount of scrubbing. Grout cleaners also come in sprays, and gels, which may influence your choice depending on your preference.
What is the best homemade tile grout cleaner?
Get the gunk out of grout by mixing a solution of baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and dish soap into a paste. This easy yet effective solution is one of the best homemade grout cleaners because it eats away at tough stains and gets deep into the porous grout. For best results, apply the paste and let it sit for five to 10 minutes. Then, scrub it away with a firm brush and thoroughly rinse the area with fresh, clean water.
How do you clean grout with toilet bowl cleaner?
Most toilet bowl cleaners contain strong chemicals that may damage grout, so if you are planning on trying this, test it out on an inconspicuous area first. To clean grout with a toilet bowl cleaner, look for a brand that contains sodium hydrochloride and/or sodium hydroxide. Both of these ingredients are very effective at lifting stains and bleaching stubborn dirty grout. Pour the cleaner onto the grout lines and let it sit for approximately 10 minutes. Then, scrub the grout. Finally, mop the area thoroughly to get rid of any lingering cleaner residue. Make sure to properly ventilate the area as well since the fumes from toilet bowl cleaners can be harmful.
How do you make grout cleaner?
There is more than one way to make grout cleaner yourself. One way is to create a paste of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. Another method is to mix a solution of vinegar and dish soap and spray it on the grout. You can also make your own cleaner with Oxiclean and warm water. No matter what method you choose, make sure to allow the cleaner to sit on the grout lines and work its way in. Then, scrub the stain off vigorously to reveal clean, good-as-new grout.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written by Julie Evans, a freelance writer who has contributed to The Spruce since 2017. Her work has appeared in several leading publications. To make this list, she considered each pick's strength, type, and application. Additional reporting was done by Mackenzie Dunn, a writer and editor with expertise in the fashion, beauty, home, and lifestyle spaces. Her work has appeared in Good Housekeeping, Woman's Day, HelloGiggles, Real Simple, MyDomaine, and more.