Question: what is the dirtiest room in your house? Surprisingly, it’s actually the kitchen, but I’m guessing that many of you thought the bathroom was the most likely answer, and for good reason.
Bathrooms are where you go to excrete wastes, wash off the dirt and oils from your body, and also where many of you give your pets a bath. With all those hair, dirt, and grime that build up over time, you may never feel truly comfortable in any bathroom except your own.
So, if hiring a cleaner may be out of the question, you’re gonna have to learn how to deep clean your own bathroom. Here’s our thorough guide on how to clean a bathroom, including how to deep clean a bathroom and all its different parts.
Basic Tools and Tips
First thing’s first: how often should you clean your bathroom? Ideally, you should do it once a week and then deep clean it every two weeks. Weekly cleaning can prevent the build-up of bacteria and pests, while deep cleaning can ensure the harder to reach areas are also clean.
You’ll need the following bathroom cleaning supplies at home. If you can’t find some of these items in your supermarket, try looking at a hardware store or online.
- Toilet brush
- Tile cleaner (ideally in a spray bottle)
- All-purpose cleaning spray
- Glass cleaner (if your bathroom has glass; otherwise disregard)
- Scrub powder
- Toilet bowl cleaner (has an angled neck for easy dispensing)
- Clean rags
- Microfiber cloth
- Paper towels
- Large sponges
- Broom and dustpan
- Stiff brush
Clean these items after use and store them properly. These can also be used for cleaning other parts of your home. While these cleaning tools are not toxic to your skin, wearing gloves can help prevent your hands from drying out.
Clean Out the Clutter
To make your cleaning more efficient, start by removing all the items that don’t belong in your bathroom. Also, remove the bathroom items that may get in the way of your deep cleaning.
- Remove all the dirty clothes in the laundry basket. Take them to your designated laundry area. Ideally, you should empty your basket every time it’s full.
- Empty the trash bins. This should be done twice a week or every time the bin is full. Do not let the trash sit for more than a week.
- Remove the side tables, organizers, and movable storage cabinets in your bathroom. Put all your shampoos, conditioners, and other bottles, creams, and other hygienic products on the storage items outside.
- Any appliances in your bathroom (e.g. hairdryers, flat irons, hair curlers, electric shavers) should be placed outside to avoid water damage.
- Remove the shower curtain. Soak it in hot water mixed with a small amount of laundry detergent. After cleaning the bathroom, let it dry before re-installing it.
- Remove any curtains and liners and put them in the washing machine. If these are white curtains, you can add bleach.
- Remove any hand towels and towels in the bathroom. Wash them if they’re used.
- Remove the toilet paper from its holder.
Once you get these out of the way, you can now start cleaning. Because of the cleaning chemicals you’ll be using, always keep the door open and the bathroom fan on to ensure the room has proper ventilation.
Let the Cleaners Sit
Some of the chemicals you’ll be using need to sit for a while before it can really deep clean your bathroom. So, the first thing you should do is to apply these cleaners on certain parts of your bathroom so that you won’t waste time doing this later on.
First, using your duster or a broom give your bathroom a quick brush to get rid of the dust. Dust off the dry areas of the bathroom (the top of the toilet, cabinets, corners of the ceiling, etc.) and then sweep the dust afterward. Once this is done, you can now start adding your cleaners.
- The night before you clean the bathroom, pour white vinegar into a plastic bag then tie it to your shower fully soaking the showerhead. Let it soak overnight, remove the bag in the morning, and run the water to rinse.
- Pour bleach or any disinfectant into the toilet bowl. Place the toilet brush inside the bowl to let the brush soak and sanitize for cleaning. It needs to sit for up to 15 minutes.
- Sprinkle scrub powder on dirty areas like your tub, sink, faucets, the corners of the bathroom, or anywhere with buildup. Dampen it (only slightly, you don’t want to wash it away) and let it sit for up to 15 minutes to let it loosen up the dirt.
- After 15 minutes, remove the toilet brush and flush out the bleach. Coat your toilet bowl with the cleaner and let it soak for at least 30 minutes.
How to Clean a Toilet
Use a rag soaked in disinfectant or all-purpose cleaner to wipe the outside of the toilet. Start with the flush handle so you don’t risk re-contaminating it. Make sure you get everything outside of the toilet bowl. If you’re using an all-purpose cleaner, rinse with water.
Once it’s been at least 30 minutes, scrub the bowl with your toilet brush, including under the rim, and as far down as you can go. If there are tough stains, use a pumice stone. Flush your toilet afterward to rinse it.
How to Clean a Bathroom Sink
Using an all-purpose cleaner, pour some cleaner over the sink and scrub the toothpaste and soap scum with a rag. Use a specific rag for this and do not re-use it to clean other parts of the bathroom to avoid contamination.
This step also applies to the bathroom sink drain. But if you find that it has a certain smell to it, the drain may be clogged or filled with residue that’s difficult to remove. First, pour half a gallon of boiling water into the sink to loosen and break up the debris.
Next, slowly pour a cup of baking soda into the drain. Let it sit for two minutes before pouring a cup of white vinegar/apple cider vinegar/lemon juice. Cover the opening to prevent the foam from escaping the drain. Once it stops bubbling, let the mixture sit for an hour before rinsing with a half-gallon of boiling water. This can remove the debris, unclog the sink, and get rid of any odors.
How to Clean a Bathtub
If there’s a grime buildup on your tub, you should have already poured scrub powder and a little water over it and let it sit for at least 15 minutes. Next, using a sponge soaked in all-purpose cleaner, scrub the entire bathtub. Rinse with water.
How to Clean a Shower
Using a bottle filled with all-purpose cleaner, spray the shower walls, shower head, and faucet and let it sit for two minutes. Use a rag to scrub the faucets as abrasives can dull the finish of your fixtures. Rinse and then use a dry towel to shine.
Use a toothbrush for showerheads and then a brush or sponge to scrub the walls. Rinse well to avoid streaks.
How to Clean Bathroom Tile from Grout
Start by getting rid of the easy-to-remove grout. By this time, you should have already let the abrasive scrubbing powder sit for more than 15 minutes, so it should already have loosened the grout. Using a stiff brush, scrub your tiles in a circular motion, and then rinse.
If the dirt is still visible, you will need vinegar, baking soda, and warm water for heavy-duty cleaning. Mix baking soda and water until you form a paste, and then cover the grout lines with it. Spray a vinegar-water solution (equal parts) on the paste and let it foam. Once it stops, scrub the paste with a stiff brush and rinse.
How to Clean the Walls, Windows, & Ceiling
This only applies if you have tile walls. Pour bleach or a disinfectant solution into a spray bottle. Spray it onto the walls and let it sit for at least two minutes. Using a clean rag, sponge, or a brush (use a brush for mold and tough stains), scrub the tile surfaces sprayed. Rinse it with water and repeat with the walls and windows.
To clean the doorknob and door handles, spray it with a disinfectant and wipe with a clean towel. Do the same with the other fixtures like towel bars, hooks, and other installations.
How to Clean the Bathroom Ventilation
Once you’re finished using cleaning chemicals and the bathroom is mostly dry, it’s time to clean the bathroom vent. Turn off the fan and switch off the circuit breaker for added measure. Remove the cover and soak it in warm water mixed with dishwashing soap. After a few minutes, gently scrub it with a sponge and rinse.
Attach your vacuum’s nozzle attachment and remove the dust from the fan blades, motor, and other corners. Use a damp cloth to wipe the fan and other areas to remove the germs, dust, and other debris. Wait for the fan to dry before re-attaching the cover.
After cleaning the bathroom, replace the shower curtain, curtains, linens, and towels. Re-line the garbage bin with new garbage bags and replace the tissue holder. Turn on the fan and leave the bathroom door open for at least 30 minutes to let the residual fumes escape and let the bathroom completely dry (to avoid mildew buildup).
In total, deep cleaning a bathroom should take you around an hour and a half, depending on its size. If you have multiple bathrooms at home, you can start preparing your cleaning simultaneously (e.g. taking out all the laundry at once, letting cleaners sit, etc.) to save on time.
Again, you should deep clean your bathroom at least twice a week to prevent excess grime and bacteria buildup. It’s a lot of work, but if you want to avoid paying someone $100 every two weeks to deep clean your bathroom, it’s necessary. But hey, the luxury of doing your business in a clean bathroom makes all the elbow grease worth it.