How to Clean a Shower Stall: Steps and Cleaners

The shower stall is the part of the bathroom where you take a shower from. It can be a walk-in shower or have a bathtub, shower panel, overhead or handheld shower head or other parts. Knowing how to clean a shower stall helps prevent damage to its parts. It also helps prevent the growth of mold and mildew. 

Clean shower stall walls with a mix of 1 cup ammonia, ½ cup white vinegar, ¼ cup baking soda and 1 gallon of hot water. Apply it to the wall with a sponge then scrub with a brush before rinsing with hot water. Pat dry. The easiest way to clean a shower stall is to wipe and air it after each use.

Some of the best commercial shower stall cleaners include Clorox for mold; CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover; and Bucko Soap Scum and Grime Remover. These cleaners can be used on various surfaces and to clean various types of dirt. 

How to Clean a Shower Stall

How to Clean Shower Stall

Most shower stall cleaning methods use vinegar either alone or mixed with other substances. As such, most of these methods explain how to clean a shower with vinegar. These methods can be used to clean different types of dirt and parts of the shower stall as described in the sections below. 

Surface/DirtCleaners and How to Clean
Mold and mildew1 part chlorine bleach and 2 parts water.
How: Apply and scrub after 10 minutes then rinse. 
Glass shower doorsWhite vinegar.
How: Wipe and let dry. 
Hard water deposits White vinegar and water. 
How: Soak then rinse. 
Water spotsLemon essential oil and water. 
How: Spray and wipe after 30 minutes. 
Soap scum 1 part liquid softener and 1 part warm water. 
How: Spray and wipe. 
Bathtubs Porcelain tub: liquid cleanser and water.
How: Apply and scrub with sponge then rinse. 
Acrylic tub: dish soap and warm water.
How: Apply and scrub with sponge then rinse. 
Plastic tub: cleaner with water. 
How: Apply and scrub with sponge then rinse.
Fiberglass tubs: cleaner and water. 
How: Spray and wipe then rinse. 
Shower headsWhite vinegar.
How: Submerge then rinse after 6 hours. 
Ceramic tiles3 quarts water, ½ cup ammonia and ½ cup white vinegar. 
How: Spray and scrub with soft brush then rinse. 
Rust and rust stainsAluminum foil and white vinegar. 
How: Dip foil in vinegar, rub and wipe dry. 
Stone surfaces1 tablespoon of dish soap and 1-quart warm water.
How: Wipe with cloth and rinse. 
Adhesive residueOlive oil. 
How: Apply then scrap after 15 minutes. 
Shower pansWD-40.
How: Apply and rinse after 15 minutes. 
Curtains, towels and ragsWash in machine and dry. 
Shower drainsWhite vinegar, baking soda and hot water. 
How: Pour hot water, then 1 cup baking soda then 1 cup white vinegar after 10 minutes. Cover for 15 minutes then flush with hot water. 
Shower doorknobsWD-40.
How: Apply and wipe dry after 15 minutes. 
Plastic surfacesWD-40.
How: Apply and wipe dry after 15 minutes.
Shower caddySoap, sponge and water. 
How: Wash with soapy water and sponge, rinse and dry.

How to clean mold and mildew in the shower

To clean mold and mildew off surfaces:

  1. Make a mixture of 1 part chlorine bleach and 2 parts of water.
  2. Apply the mixture to the surfaces with mold or mildew.
  3. After 10 minutes, scrub the areas with the soft-bristled brush.
  4. Rinse with hot water afterwards. 

Ammonia and chlorine bleach form an explosive mixture and should not be mixed at any one time. 

Clean mold off bathroom sealant (on the floor or fixtures) by using baking soda and vinegar or toilet paper. You can also use bleach, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide and Borax for this.

To keep mold and mildew away from your shower, wipe down the shower walls with a piece of dry cloth after every session in the shower. Mold and mildew growth depends on the availability of wetness on the wall. Keeping it dry prevents their growth. 

If the area you live in is often plagued with mildew, use a mildew disinfectant or inhibitor every 2 to 3 days. Besides that, you can always leave the bathroom door open or add a fan to facilitate air circulation. Circulating air prevents moisture buildup which prevents mold growth. 

How to Clean Glass Shower Doors 

To clean glass shower doors and keep them clear, put a sponge in white vinegar then use it to wipe the glass doors. You don’t need to rinse it since the water can make them dirty again. 

You can also clean soap scum off the glass shower doors using a mixture of 1 quart warm water and 1 cup liquid fabric softener. Use a sponge to clean the doors then rinse it off with clean water. 

Glass shower doors can also be cleaned with commercial glass cleaners with great results. 

How to Clean Hard Water Deposits

Clean hard water deposits as follows:

  1. Mix white vinegar with water then using it to soak the areas with hard water deposits.
  2. Scrub the surfaces then rinse with clean water afterwards. 

How to Clean Water Spots

Water spots in the shower such as on the tiles and metal surfaces can be cleaned using lemon oil as follows:

  1. Mix 1 cup of water with 10 drops of lemon essential oil then put the mixture in a spray can.
  2. Spray the mixture onto the water spots then wipe it off after 30 seconds. The acid in the lemon essential oil breaks down the grime on the surface of your choice.

You can prevent the formation of water spots and buildup of soap scum on bathroom tile walls by coating the walls with furniture polish. 

How to Clean Soap Scum

As described above, you use a mixture of 1 quart warm water and 1 cup liquid fabric softener to clean soap scum off glass shower doors. If the soap scum is on other parts of the shower such as the floor or bathtub, use a mixture of 4 parts water and 1 part mineral oil in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture on the soap scum then wipe it off with a piece of cloth. 

How to Clean Bathtubs

Various types of bathtubs require different cleaning methods and materials as follows:

  • Porcelain bathtubs are cleaned using a liquid cleanser or non-abrasive powder soap. Place some amount of the powder or cleanser on a sponge or piece of cloth then use it to scrub the bathtub. Rinse with water afterwards. 
  • Acrylic bathtubs are cleaned using dish soap, warm water and a soft sponge. Be careful with acrylic surfaces since they easily get gouged and scratched. Rinse afterwards. You can also use citrus fruits such as limes, lemons and grapefruit to clean acrylic surfaces. Commercial acrylic cleaners such as Formula 409 All-Purpose Cleaner, CLR Bath and Kitchen Cleaner, Dawn Dish Soap, and Lysol Power Bathroom Cleaner are safe for cleaning acrylic surfaces.
  • Plastic bathtubs are cleaned by using non-abrasive commercial cleaners or a paste made from baking soda and water. Simply add the commercial cleaner or baking soda paste on a piece of cloth, clean the plastic surface of the tub and rinse with water. 
  • Fiberglass bathtubs are cleaned using a non-abrasive liquid cleaner or commercial cleaner specifically for fiberglass surfaces. The cleaner is either sprayed or applied to a piece of cloth then used to clean the tub. You then rinse it with water. Apply a coat of fiberglass boat wax (fiberglass marine wax) to protect the bathtub. 

Besides that, clean the drain by removing any hairs and debris from it with an auger. 

A paste made of hydrogen peroxide and cream of tartar is also used to clean rings formed around the bathtub. You apply the paste to the ring then wipe it off when it dries up. 

Clean discolored porcelain surfaces using a paste made with hydrogen peroxide and Cream of Tartar. You can also clean porcelain surfaces using a paste made with borax and lemon juice. The paste is applied to a sponge then used to clean the discolored surface. Rinse it off with clean water. 

Clean a yellowed bathtub by rubbing it with a mixture of salt and turpentine. Rinse it off with clean water afterwards. 

How to Clean Shower Heads 

Clean mineral deposits and other types of dirt from a shower head as follows:

  1. Fill a nylon bag with white vinegar then tie it around the shower head. Make sure the shower head is completely soaked in the vinegar. Leave it overnight. 
  2. In the morning, remove the plastic bag and brush the outside of the shower head before rinsing it with clean water.
  3. Let the shower run for a few minutes to clear out the vinegar from inside the shower head. 

Poke any clogged holes with a sharp object to dislodge the dirt in them then run the shower. Clean shower heads at least once each month especially if you use hard water.

How to Clean Ceramic Tiles 

Clean ceramic tiles as follows:

  1. Mix 3 quarts hot water, ½ cup of ammonia and ½ cup of white vinegar in a spray can.
  2. Apply the mixture or cleanser to the water, wait for 10-15 minutes then scrub the tiles with a soft-bristled brush.
  3. Rinse with hot water to kill any mold or mildew spores.
  4. Finish off with a wipe using a bathroom towel or squeegee to remove water spots.

Ceramic tiles are hard to clean as they have grout in between them which can easily come off if cleaned wrongly. This grout also offers the perfect conditions for the growth of mold and mildew. Proper and careful cleaning is thus needed to keep ceramic tiles in good condition. 

Thankfully, you can clean ceramic tiles with commercial shower and grout cleaners and a soft brush. If you don’t have these cleaners, use the procedure above. 

How to Clean Rust and Rust Stains

Clean rust off shower surfaces as follows:

  1. Cut aluminum foil into small palm-sized pieces.
  2. Clean the shower surface using a cloth dipped in water.
  3. Dip the pieces of aluminum foil in white vinegar then use them to scrub the rust off the affected metal surface.
  4. Use a wet piece of cloth to wipe the surface clean.

The best way to remove rust stains is using commercial rust removers. These are acidic chemicals which need to be handled with care. 

You can clean rust and rust stains with a paste made of baking soda and lemon juice especially for the smaller rust stains. Borax and lemon juice also works quite well in cleaning rust stains on bathtubs. All these can be used to remove rust from shower rods.

While at it, avoid using chlorine bleach on rust stains as it can make the rust to become permanent. 

How to Clean Stone Surfaces

Clean stone surfaces as follows:

  1. Apply the stone cleaner or mixture of 1 tablespoon of dishwashing soap and 1 quart of warm water.
  2. Wipe the surface with a piece of microfiber cloth then rinse with clean water.
  3. Dry the stone surface with a microfiber cloth to prevent streaking. 

Stone surfaces are mostly granite, marble or other natural stone. Harsh chemicals such as vinegar, ammonia or any acids can damage natural stone and should thus never be used to clean stone. Instead, clean stone surfaces using a commercial stone cleaner (without acid or ammonia components) or a mild dishwashing soap. 

You can also use chlorine bleach mixed with water to clear mold and mildew from stone surfaces. Apply a sealer to prevent chemicals from seeping into the stones. 

How to Clean Adhesive Residue

Clean adhesive residue from surfaces as follows:

  1. Apply olive oil on the goo then give it 15 minutes to work on it.
  2. Scrap it off with a plastic scraper. If this doesn’t work, remove the adhesive residue with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. 

Goo from a sticker or accessory can be unpleasant to look at and even worse to touch. Such adhesive residue is usually waterproof and using normal soap won’t wash it off. Instead, clean adhesive residue using olive oil or rubbing alcohol. 

How to Clean Shower Pans

To clean a shower pan:

  1. Apply WD-40, wait for 15 minutes then rinse the surface.
  2. After that, wipe it then let it air dry. 

A shower pan is the area on the floor of the shower stall which collects and directs water to the drain. Shower pans can be made of Chloraloy or rubber both of which are easily damaged by white vinegar and other acidic substances. 

How to Clean Curtains, Towels and Rags

Most curtains, rags and towels in the bathroom are machine washable and should be washed in a washing machine. Make sure you have the right washing machine soap and softener then use hot water for at least an hour to give them a proper wash. 

How to Clean Shower Drains

Clean your shower drain as follows:

  1. Pour hot water into the drain followed by 120 ml (half a cup) of bicarbonate soda.
  2. After 10 minutes, add 120 ml of white vinegar followed by more hot cover.
  3. Cover the drain for 15 minutes then pour in more hot water to rinse the drain. 

Another method of cleaning a shower drain is by applying a commercial cleaner to the opening of the shower drain then cleaning with a toothbrush. Remove the drain cover to wash underneath it and remove any debris like hair from it. 

To keep hair and other items from clogging up your drain, install a plug guard over the drain. You then only need to remove the dirt captured every few days. 

How to Clean Shower Doorknobs 

You should clean dirty bathroom doorknobs as follows:

  1. Spray WD-40 or a solution of water and white vinegar mixed in equal parts.
  2. Leave it for 15 minutes then rinse the doorknob. Pat dry with a dry piece of clothing. 

How to Clean Plastic Surfaces

Clean plastic surfaces either with WD-40 or a paste made with bicarbonate soda and water as follows:

Apply the cleaner on a piece of cloth.

Clean the plastic surface then rinse it with clean water.

Avoid using abrasive and corrosive chemicals when cleaning plastic surfaces. 

How to Clean Shower Caddy

Clean your shower caddy as follows:

  1. Wash your shower caddy with soap, a sponge and water then rinse with clean water.
  2. Let it dry before putting back the items it had.

The shower caddy stores your soaps, shampoos, shaving machines and other items. It quickly gets dirty from the items it stores, steam and dust.

In all the methods above, never use harsh and abrasive materials and chemicals on the surfaces as you’ll damage them. These methods also apply to how to clean a walk-in shower since most of its parts are mentioned in the list. 

How often should you clean the shower stall?

You should clean your shower stall thoroughly every week. You need to do some cleaning as well after every shower session by wiping down the doors and walls with a bathroom towel or a squeegee. Clear the floor of as much water as possible then hang the bathroom cleaning tools to air dry. 

Frequency of CleaningWhat and How to Clean
Daily Walls.
How: Wipe the walls with a squeegee.
Every other day (2nd day)Walls.
How: Spray walls with white vinegar and tea tree oil then wipe dry. 
Weekly Floor, doors, wall tiles and grout. 
How: Clean each as directed above. 
When neededShower head: soak in white vinegar overnight then rinse. 
Grout: clean and regrout. 

How often you clean the various parts of the shower stall are as follows:

1. What to clean in the bathroom daily

Each day and time you use the bathroom, wipe the walls with a towel or squeegee, run the fan for 30 minutes or leave the bathroom open for an hour, and generally air the bathroom. 

2. What to clean in the bathroom every other day

Every few days, clean your bathroom by spraying it with a shower cleaner or white vinegar mixed with tea tree oil. The aim is to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Mix 1 drop of tea tree oil per 2 ounces of vinegar if you don’t have a commercial cleaner. 

3. What to clean in the bathroom weekly

Each week, clean the shower stall by wiping the floor, doors and wall tiles with an eraser sponge. You should also clean the grout in your bathroom every week. 

4. What to clean in the bathroom when needed

Every 6 months to a year, clean then seal the grout to keep it in good shape. You should also clean the shower head using distilled white vinegar every 6 months. You should also seal grout and clean the shower heads when they get dirty or malfunction. 

Precautions when cleaning a shower stall

Some of the precautions to observe when cleaning your shower stall include:

  • Always use protective gear when handling chemicals to avoid injury. This includes goggles, gloves and protective clothing like aprons. 
  • Whenever possible, use oxygen-based bleach (such as hydrogen peroxide, sodium perborate or sodium percarbonate) instead of chlorine-based bleach as they’re safer and more effective. 
  • Always have a well-aerated bathroom when cleaning it. This applies to both commercial and homemade cleaners. 
  • Vinegar should not be used on stone or travertine surfaces as it damages them. 

These tips will prevent accidents when cleaning the shower stall. 

FAQs

What is the easiest way to clean a shower stall?

The easiest way to clean a shower stall is to prevent the buildup of dirt by rinsing the surfaces after each use. Wipe the doors, floor then air the bathroom. Using steam or hot water to rinse the surfaces after every use helps keep dirt to the minimal. 

What is the best way to clean a fiberglass shower stall?

The best way to clean a fiberglass shower stall is by sprinkling baking soda on the fiberglass shower stall then spraying white vinegar on it. Use a piece of cloth to gently clean the surface with the paste formed followed by rinsing with water. 

What is the best way to clean a shower?

The best way to clean a shower is to combine rinsing after every use with weekly thorough cleaning. Rinsing after each use keeps the dirt to the minimum while the weekly washing removes any remaining dirt and kills off germs, mold and mildew. 

How do I get my shower white again?

You can get your shower white again my mixing ½ cup of white vinegar, 4 tablespoons of baking soda and ½ cup of a kitchen cleaner like Blue Dawn then applying the mixture to the affected areas. Wait for 2 hours then wipe the surface. Clean a yellowed bathtub with salt and turpentine then rinse. 

How do I get the grime off my shower?

You can get grime off shower by spraying it with a mixture of 1 cup white vinegar, 1 cup water and 1 tablespoon dish detergent. Wait for 15 minutes then rinse with hot water then pat the shower dry. 

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