How to Effectively Clean Shower Glass

Last update: 5 months ago

The professional ins and outs of cleaning a shower glass and removing soap scum.

Having a shower glass comes with a lot of advantages. Unfortunately, easy cleaning and maintenance don’t quite make the list. Whether you prefer framed, frameless or the semi-frameless option, regular cleaning is essential for protecting the glass and maintaining its spotless look. Knowing some quick and easy tips also helps, especially for tackling the biggest problem – hard water stain.


Why limescale builds up on glass?


We’ve all seen it at some point – a white-ish deposit with hard structure that seems to grow exponentially over time when not treated. Basically, this is the residue left from hard water, as the latter is rich on calcium and various other minerals. Depending on the area you live in, the water quality could vary, but statistics show that Western and Southern parts of Australia have harder H2O.

While limescale is a common problem for pipes, boilers and kettles, it can also affect the shower glass, which comes in contact with evaporating hard water, too. The best way to prevent the formation of these hard water stains is by providing adequate care on time.


What about soap scum?


If your glass shower door looks cloudy all the time and cleaning proves to be challenging, then soap scum is probably responsible. It forms after soap reacts with hard water, resulting in a white or grey layer that will only get thicker if not treated. This could affect more than the shower screen, covering tiles, tub, sink and other areas in the bathroom.

Cleaning the soap scum off the shower glass and any other places immediately is certainly the best approach. However, not everyone has the chance to do this, so a regular washing every 2-3 days (depending on showering frequency) will also prove effective.

Although some commercial products have ingredients that prevent soap scum build ups, knowing a few more tricks will definitely come in handy.


How to keep your shower screen clean naturally


Vinegar

Vinegar has established itself as the № 1 eco-friendly cleaning agent. Thanks to its degreasing and germ-killing powers, it is especially useful in problematic areas like the kitchen and bathroom. If you don’t mind the smell, the vinegar will also prove quite effective for eliminating all hard water stains.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to promptly get the shower screen clean using plain vinegar:

  1. Prepare a clean spray bottle
  2. Fill it either with pure white vinegar solution or dilute it 50/50 with hot water (be careful to avoid burns!)
  3. Spray thoroughly on both sides of the glass shower door
  4. Leave for 15 min (time could be extended for heavier pollution)
  5. Rinse well with water and leave to dry on its own.
    (Optional) Polish the glass using a microfibre cloth or cotton rag (old pillow works great) for making your shower screen spotless

If you are looking for a natural alternative, this is truly the best way to wash a shower or any glass to perfection. The vinegar cleaning method is fast and easy, which comes in handy when you have more to cover like entire shower glass enclosures. It could also serve as a general bathroom sanitiser, given that natural stone tiles or other elements are not present.

Vinegar and baking soda

If you think your shower glass could use a deeper cleaning, then combining vinegar and bicarb soda is easy and effective. The white crystals can work through thicker soap scum and limescale formations thanks to being abrasive.

The method is quite simple, too. After following the first three steps above, make sure to dampen a sponge well and sprinkle baking soda on top of it. Now, all that you have to do is scrub gently on both sides of the glass screen. Leave the ingredients to react for a few minutes and then rinse well.

Salt and citrus (lemon/grapefruit)

Another natural way to clean a shower screen until it’s spotless involves these simple products. Whether you prefer a fresh lemon or grapefruit, you can rest assured that in the end, you will have a sparkling shower glass and a nice smelling bathroom, as well!

This is a nice alternative for everyone who is not a fan of the strong vinegar smell. The citric acid will cut through the grime just like the vinegar, while the salt will give you the abrasive power to make all unpleasant formations disappear.

The process is pretty straightforward:

  1. Cut one lemon/grapefruit in half;
  2. Cover it with kitchen salt;
  3. Scrub the shower screen, as you make sure to squeeze well for the juice to come out and keep adding salt from time to time.
  4. Rinse and enjoy!

Other alternatives to try…


Eucalyptus products

Keeping your shower glass clean can be fast and easy using products containing eucalyptus. However, not all are suitable. When it comes to regular essential oil, some products may prove too oily which could result in having to put extra elbow grease into cleaning or mix them with other ingredients.

Therefore, it is better to always check the labels. Look for cleaners which have eucalyptus in their composition but are also soluble like this product popularised by an Aussie mum.

WD-40

WD-40 can do more than help you polish stainless steel. You can add cleaning of the shower screen to the list with its popular uses around the house, thanks to its water-displacing formula. However, it also helps break down silicone, so be extra careful when applying it in your bathroom.

Dryer sheets

Instead of throwing away the used and unnecessary dryer sheets, just repurpose them. They can help erase the soap scum right away and the best part is that you don’t have to add any chemicals. It’s enough to dampen the dryer sheet and you are ready to clean any glass shower door. Rinse well with warm water and do a once over with a sponge if needed.

For convenience, you can stash all used dryer sheets in a jar with a few drops of water or vinegar. They can be very useful for keeping elements of the bathroom clean like mirrors and faucets, as well as for thorough dusting around the house.

 

Takeaways and prevention tips:

  • Do a quick cleaning of the glass screen after a shower every chance you get
  • Dedicate time to a deeper cleaning at least once every 5-7 days, testing some of the methods above
  • Reduce cleaning time by investing in products that provide protection for the glass against hard water effect
  • Switch entirely to liquid soap/shower gel as they have a lighter formula and are highly soluble
  • Give the squeegee a central part in your bathroom cleaning kit and teach everyone at home how to use it

 

 

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Paul Routledge
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Paul Routledge

As a window cleaner, I often have homeowners ask me to clean their shower glass also. I have found hard-water stains to be exceptionally difficult. I have had mixed results with buffing the stains out with a fine grade steel wool. I will take some of these tips on board for sure.

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