Do the grout lines on your kitchen floor resemble a map of interstate highways? Grout is easy to stain, a little more difficult to clean, and it can crack from impact and long-term wear. Ceramic tiles tend to stay cleaner than grout, so eventually you just have to get down and dirty to even the appearance.
For straight-forward cleaning, visit your home improvement or hardware store and buy a pH-neutral tile and grout cleaner. A cleaning solution with heavy bleach can reverse your dark grout lines completely so that the bone white filler is brighter than the tiles. Now you still have a problem with uniform appearance. You want a good balance of chemicals for tough stains.
Removing Grout Stains
Many brands of commercial grout cleaner are available on the market. If you want to mix your own cleaner, use about a quarter cup of bleach for a quart of warm water. Let the solution work into the grout for ten minutes, then work out the dirt or stain with a stiff brush. After it's dry, finish up with a coat of grout sealer to keep dirt and stains from discoloring the surface.
If your grout is chipped or cracked, you can remove the damaged sections with a chisel or awl, but take care or you can damage the adjacent tiles. Be sure to use the same color grout that was used the first time. Some contractors recommend a gum rubber float to help seal the surface.
If you have a laminate floor, you may encounter a different set of issues. If the laminate needs repair, check our website for more information.