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Soap Scum & Hard Water Build-up

Soap Scum & Hard Water Build-up


Imagine the cleaning product that gets you clean, creates the grungy look on your tile and shower doors. No need to imagine this because it is happening everyday most of the time, without anyone being aware until it becomes a hard hazy unsightly layer on your tile that is difficult and may seem impossible to remove. What can you do to stop this from happening in your shower?

Just like many things in life, "prevention is better than cure." How to prevent and stop the soap scum from taking over your shower enclosure, make the following adjustments:

  • Eliminate bar soap and use liquid soap. Bar soap is made from fatty acids that combine with the minerals in hard water causing a thick sticky soap residue that sticks to your tile, grout, bathtub and shower doors. Liquid soap (gel or body wash) is not really a soap but a detergent that cleans like soap but with less sticky ingredients. Soap scum will not be completely eliminated with this change but it will reduce it.

  • Keep your shower clean and dry. After every shower it is important to rinse the shower of any soap, suds or bubbles left behind, take a squeegee and squeegee the tile and shower doors. Finally take a towel and wipe off any remaining water. This may seem like a lot of work but these few minutes will save you hours of time and money when the time comes to remove the soap scum build up.

  • Install a water softener in your home. The water softener removes the minerals that react with the soap and hard water forming soap scum.

  • Invest in a daily shower cleaning product

NOTE: These preventative maintenance measures should be incorporated wherever you are using soap and water - tubs, sinks, etc.

If prevention wasn't part of your chosen routine and soap scum is what you have, the following measures may be used to remove:

  • Create a paste of vinegar and baking soda. Put the paste directly on the tile over the trouble soap scum. Let it remain for 15min. With a clean, non-abrasive towel (microfiber cloth) buff the vinegar paste off. Rinse and towel dry. This process should NOT be done on natural stone.
  • Cleaning products that have received rave reviews from soap scum users. Scrubbing Bubbles Mega Shower Foamer, ZEP Shower, Tub and Tile Cleaner, Rejuvenate Soap and Scum Remover. In combination with these products be ready to use some elbow grease and a non scratch sponge or cloth to buff to remove the soap scum. All of these products can be found on Amazon or in your local grocery/hardware store.
  • Remember it is important to have your tile and grout professionally cleaned on a regular schedule. Why? Grout is very porous and must be cleaned and sealed not only but especially in the bathroom. With soaps, cleaning products, harsh household cleaners, water (hot and hard water) and humidity, the grout can become a breeding ground for bacteria, mold and mildew or change the color of your grout over time. Mold and mildew can cause or activate health issues and it simply looks terrible. It is important to hire a professional to deep clean your tile & grout and seal your grout adding a barrier to stop bacteria, keeping the grout line color consistent and making it easier to clean and maintain.

Zerorez New Mexico professionally cleans tile and grout and will apply a sealant to the grout lines after it is cleaned. Zerorez New Mexico is proud to provide this service in the Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Los Lunas and Santa Fe area. Give us a call at (505) 585-5053 for more information.