How to Scrub and Clean a Bathtub

Modern bathroom
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Since we use our bathtubs to get dirt and grime off of us, we should be surprised that, inevitably, some of it stays in the tub. Getting your tub free of limescale, soap scum, mineral deposits, and dirt can seem like a tough job, but in just a few steps you can get your bathtub squeaky clean.

What You Need To Clean a Bathtub

  • Tile Cleaner
  • Grout Brush
  • All-Purpose Spray or Bathroom Cleaner
  • Cleaning Cloths or Sponges
  • Old Toothbrush or Small Cleaning Brush

How To Clean and Scrub a Bathtub

  1. Remove everything from inside the bathtub; all toiletries, toy, bottles, and loofas should be placed elsewhere. We don't want to get any cleaners on them. This is a great time to toss anything that is empty or not going to be used. Wipe down all the items that you remove. Slimy soap scum can build up on these items too. Set them aside to be placed back in the bathtub later.
  2. Begin with the tub surround; the walls above and around the tub are the first things to clean. If your grout is mildewed and dirty, you'll need to begin by using a tile cleaner and grout brush. Work from top to bottom, following the instructions on your tile cleaner. Fully rinse away any tile cleaner residue. You never want your cleaners to mix. Spray down the walls with an all-purpose cleaner, or cleaner that's formulated for your tub surround. Wipe down the walls thoroughly, paying special attention to any sticky or obviously dirty areas. Be sure to ventilate the area with an open window or fan if your cleaner is bleach based or has any other strong scent.
  1. Apply an all-purpose or tub cleaner to the interior of your bathtub; letting the cleaner sit for 3 to 5 minutes will allow it power through much of the grime, making your job easier. After 3 to 5 minutes begin working from top to bottom wiping down the tub. Be sure to rinse this area thoroughly.
  2. Tackle soap scum; using an old toothbrush or other small cleaning brush, begin scrubbing the corners where the tub meets the wall. Watch out for other places where soap scum has been collecting. The soap scum might be a darkened color or it might just feel like buildup in your tub. Take the time to gently scrub it away.
  1. Tackle ring around the tub; a stained ring may form around the interior of the bathtub. This will need special attention with a scrub brush and cleanser. You might need to really scrub to get this fully removed. Rinse thoroughly.
  2. Wipe everything down again one last time; dry out the bathtub by wiping it down with a clean towel or cleaning cloth.This is important to make sure no water spots or residue remain in the bathtub.

Tips for Cleaning a Bathtub

  1. If your bathtub is acrylic, be careful not to damage with scrubbers with any metal parts. Even enamel bathtubs can be damaged by using the wrong type of brush.
  2. Baking soda and vinegar mixed together can be a great cleaner for the bathtub. Be sure to rinse thoroughly.
  3. Wear gloves to protect your hands and skin. Be sure to ventilate the bathroom anytime you are using cleaning products.
  4. Never mix household cleaners. Make sure all residue of a cleaner is gone before treating the surface with another cleaner.