When we moved into our house 3 years ago it slowly started to become clear that the grout in our tile was never sealed. It’s been bothering me recently as we’ve started slowly doing various projects around the house. Our 2,000 square foot home is entirely covered in tile, which I don’t quite care for, but we know this isn’t going to be our forever home so completely changing all the floors isn’t really something we want to invest in.

Cleaning the grout seemed easy enough once I started looking in to it. And there’s also something to me that is really liberating to watch something go from dirty to clean with the scrub of a brush. It’s the same reason, I guess, why I love vacuuming so much!

I found an easy DIY way to clean grout thanks to a Google search. I began with the grout in the hallway. When my husband came home from work he noticed what I was using and said we had some grout cleaner in the garage. I’d already seen how well the DIY ingredients were working, but decided to use the store bought cleaner to compare the results.

Can you tell a difference?

 Here are the results:


(I see I need to take a wet brush and clean out the bottom pic a bit more)

I think they both did quite well, though I see the DIY did slightly better. In the end  I think it plays into preference. If you prefer less toxic products then I’d tell you to go with the DIY natural version.

If you don’t have a preference then the store bought grout cleaner was less steps and took slightly less time. And I think it was comparable to the DIY version.


If you like the satisfaction of seeing something clean right before your eyes (even the chemical reaction between the baking soda and vinegar is quite satisfying!) and want something that isn’t chemically harmful, then the DIY version is super easy and you may already have what you need!

DIY Natural Grout Cleaner:


You will need:

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar (I used the cleaning solution one)
  • Scrub brush (a toothbrush would work as well)
  • Spray bottle (I recycled an empty one I already had)
  • Cloth
  • Bowl or plastic cup (not pictured-which you use depends on how big an area you are cleaning at a time)
  • Water
  1. In the cup or bowl mix warm water and baking soda together. You want it a paste consistency. How much you use depends on how big an area you are going to work with. I just started with the hallway so I used a red solo cup, filled it about 1/3 of baking soda and mixed with warm water until pasty.
  2. Mix water and vinegar with a 1 to 1 ratio in the spray bottle.
  3. Spray the vinegar mix onto the grout.
  4. Dip the brush into the paste and scrub on the grout over the vinegar and let it sit for a few minutes. The dirtier the grout the longer you’re going to want it to sit. Mine was black so I let it sit for about 4-5 minutes.
  5. (optional) Again, if it’s really dirty spray a bit more vinegar on before you scrub the dirt away.
  6. With your brush, start scrubbing the grout. You’ll have some excess liquid so use the cloth to wipe it away.  This is my favorite part because you’ll see the dirt coming off and spilling over onto the tile. Instant satisfaction!
  7. You’ll want to take the cloth and clean the baking soda out so it doesn’t look chalky.Keep in mind, you’ll have to wait until it completely dries to see the biggest difference!

It’s that easy!

I do think both cleaners did their job, but The DIY grout cleaner solution will also clean the whole tile, not just the grout! And what a difference! You may not even know your tile is dirty until you start cleaning it.

I’m also sealing our tile as I go so I don’t have to do this again!

Happy grout cleaning!

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