Keep bathroom fixtures gleaming with regular cleaning. Here's how.

June 08, 2015

Whether part of a vanity or standing as a pedestal, a bathroom sink is often the first fixture seen when entering the room. And sinks can't be hidden behind a shower curtain if the last occupant left them messy. So you'll want to keep them clean and shining, even if only to start each new day on a high note. Clean your bathroom sink with a general-purpose spray cleaner or a mixture of vinegar and water (one cup vinegar to one cup water). For stubborn grime, scrub the sink with a mildly abrasive cleanser or a paste made from baking soda and water. Vinegar works well for removing soap scum. Dry the sink with a soft cloth to keep it gleaming.

Cleaning Bathtubs

Porcelain or ceramic bathtubs should be cleaned with either a general purpose cleaner, vinegar and water, or a paste made from baking soda and water. Never use undiluted bleach on a porcelain tub because of the danger of pitting. Undiluted bleach can remove the finish on porcelain, which "pits" it--making it look and feel rough. Use a stain-removing cleanser on rust.

Acrylic and fiberglass tubs do not have pores in them so they're easy to keep clean with a small amount of dish soap and water. Wipe the surface of the tub with a soft cloth for ongoing maintenance. If you, or someone in your household, use bath oils, wipe down the tub immediately after bathing to avoid scum build-up.

Cleaning Showerheads and Faucets

The best cleaning method for showerheads and faucets depends on composition. To remove lime from showerheads made with chrome, stainless steel, or other protected metal surfaces, fill a plastic bag with white vinegar. Attach the bag over the showerhead with a rubber band. Wait one hour, then remove the bag of vinegar and turn on the shower to flush away the vinegar and sediment. Polish with a soft cloth.

For fixtures with oil-rubbed bronze or brass finishes, it is often recommend that you use only water for cleaning. This is especially true of fixtures with "living finishes" that are intended to change over time. Refer to the manufacturer's care instructions since cleansers can damage a specialty surface. And if in doubt, always test a cleaning product on an inconspicuous part of the fixture so that any damage to the finish is hard to spot.

Cleaning the Toilet and Toilet Bowl

Spray the toilet exterior with a general purpose cleaner or mixture of vinegar and water. Wipe clean. Use a mild cleaner such as dish soap with water to clean the surface of the toilet seat. Sanitize the bowl by scrubbing with antibacterial toilet cleaner or 1/4 cup bleach to 1 gallon of water. Wipe off any splashes or drips on surrounding area with a soft dry cloth.


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