How to Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White in 6 Ways

Easily clean dark grout that has turned white using vinegar, baking soda, and ammonia mixture. Pour the mixture into a sprayer and thoroughly scrub the grout lines. Moreover, lemon juice and white vinegar also do wonders for cleaning dark grout. Spray it on, scrub, rinse, and you will have clean dark grout on your hands in no time!

We all fall in love with the beautiful ceramic tiles on our kitchen floors or in our bathrooms. Many people go with dark grout for kitchen and bathroom tile since it doesn’t show dirt, dust, and grime the way other light-colored ones do. 

However, with the passage of time dark grout gets discolored due to the accumulation of food particles, mold, etc. You can easily make your tiles sparkling clean again with the help of the right set of instructions and a little bit of elbow grease.

Let’s learn how to clean dark grout that has turned white.

how to clean dark grout that has turned white

3 Reasons Why Dark Grout Turns White

You must be wondering what is wrong with your white grout and why it is turning white. There are quite a few reasons for this. Let’s see what they are.

Exposure to Salts & Minerals in Water

This is one of the main reasons why dark grout turns white. Salt, minerals, etc. from the water gets stuck to the surface of the grout. As a result, a thin white layer starts to form on the grout. Moreover, it can also occur as a result of moisture being trapped under the slab.

Additionally, if your tiles are exposed to rain, grout can turn white as a result of that as well. Even water that you use for cleaning floors can cause grout to turn white over the passage of time. 

Polymers in the Grout

Grout usually contains polymers in it. When the polymers come into contact with water for a long period of time, they create a white haze on the grout.

Commercial Cleaning Solvents

In many cases, tile cleaners themselves are the reason why your dark grout is turning white. When you clean the tiles, it is very likely that you leave a layer of residue behind since you have not thoroughly rinsed the area.

This residue forms a white layer over the grout.

6 DIY Solutions for How to Clean Dark Grout that has Turned White 

Now that you know why you are left with ugly looking white grout, here’s how you can clean your dark grout that has turned white with easy, simple, DIY solutions. 

Use Vinegar, Ammonia, and Baking Soda

Vinegar works very well on its own when it comes to cleaning dark grout. Once you add baking soda and ammonia to it, you create a formidable cleaning solution. 

Things You Will Need

  • Water
  • Baking Soda
  • Ammonia
  • Vinegar
  • Cup
  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • Spray Bottle
  • Small Brush
  • Towel


  1. Take a broom and sweep the entire area thoroughly. If you have a vacuum, you can use that to clean the area. 
  1. Heat 7 cups of water and bring it to a boil.
  1. Take a bucket and pour the boiled water into it.
  1. Add half a cup of baking soda to it.
  1. Add one-third cup ammonia and one-fourth cup vinegar. Stir the mixture thoroughly.
  1. You can either dip a sponge in this mixture or pour the mixture into a sprayer. 
  1. Apply the cleaner to the grout in a liberal amount.
  1. Let it sit for 15 minutes.
  1. Take a small brush and scrub the grout thoroughly with it. 
  1. Rinse the treated area with clean water.
  1. Use a towel to wipe it dry.
  1. Repeat as many times as necessary until you have sparkling clean grout!

Use Lemon Juice/White Vinegar

Things You Will Need

  • Lemon Juice/White Vinegar
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Bowl
  • Old Cloth


  1. Take some lemon juice in a small bowl.
  1. Dip a sponge in the lemon juice and apply it directly to the grout. You can use white vinegar instead of lemon juice as well.
  1. Give the lemon juice 15 mins to work.
  1. Scrub the grout lines with an old toothbrush or a small brush.
  1. Rinse the area and wipe it with an old cloth.
  1. Repeat, if required.
man cleaning grout

Use Vinegar & Detergent Soap

Things You Will Need

  • Vinegar
  • Detergent Soap
  • Spray Bottle
  • Warm Water
  • Old Brush
  • Broom
  • Vacuum Cleaner


  1. Clean the floor thoroughly using either a broom or vacuum cleaner.
  1. Take 1 cup vinegar.
  1. Add one cup of detergent soap to it.
  1. Mix thoroughly and add it to a spray bottle.
  1. Add some warm water and shake thoroughly.
  1. Spray this onto the grout and let it work its magic for 30 minutes.
  1. Scrub the surface with an old brush.
  1. Rinse with clean water. This will ensure that there is no cleaning residue on the tiles.
  1. Repeat, if required.

Use Chlorine Solution

Things You Will Need

  • Chlorine
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Brush
  • Gloves
  • Mask
  • Goggles


  1. Wear protective gloves, masks, and goggles when working with chlorine. 
  1. Take 2 cups of chlorine with one cup of water. The texture of this mixture should resemble that of toothpaste. 
  1. With the help of a sponge apply this mixture to the grout lines. 
  1. Let the paste work its magic for almost 10 minutes. Don’t leave it on for more than 10 minutes since the chlorine can damage your grout. 
  1. With the help of a firm, small brush, scrub the lines thoroughly. 
  1. Rinse with clean water and air dry.
  1. Repeat, if necessary.

Use Oxygen Bleach

Things You Will Need

  • Powdered Oxygen Bleach
  • Spray Bottle
  • Sponge
  • Protective Masks
  • Gloves
  • Goggles
  • Water


  1. Take some powdered oxygen bleach. Mix it with warm water.
  1. Stir the mixture thoroughly until the oxygen bleach dissolves completely.
  1. Pour this mixture into a spray bottle.
  1. Spray the mixture onto the grout. You can also sip a sponge in the mixture and then use it to apply the mixture to the grout.
  1. Make sure that you are wearing protective masks, gloves, and goggles while doing this.
  1. Let the homemade cleaner sit for at least 30 minutes. The more you wait, the better the results will be. The oxygen ions present in the bleach can continue to work for almost 6 hours.
  1. Scrub the grout lines thoroughly with a small brush.
  1. Rinse the treated area with clean water and dry it with an old rag.

Use Toothpaste

Things You Will Need

  • Towel
  • Toothpaste
  • Water


  1. This is an unconventional, yet efficient method of cleaning your dark grout lines. Take a clean towel.
  1. Squirt some toothpaste on it.
  1. Rub the towel with toothpaste on it evenly across the grout. 
  1. Wait till the toothpaste dries completely, for about 10 to 15 minutes. 
  1. Now take a moist towel, and wipe the surface with it. You will see that the white stains are gone.
  1. Rinse, dry, and repeat, if necessary.

Alternative Solution – Using Commercial Grout Cleaner

Things You Will Need

  • Commercial Grout Cleaner
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Small Cleaning Brush


  1. Check the instructions given on the back of the commercial grout cleaner and mix the cleaner and water in the desired amounts. Don’t use an inappropriate amount of cleaner and water since it ruins your tiles.
  1. Take a sponge and dip it in the cleaner-water mixture.
  1. Coat the grout with the mixture thoroughly.
  1. Let the solution sit for 5 minutes or as stipulated on the package.
  1. Scrub the grout lines thoroughly with a small brush. You will see the dark color of the grout returning gradually.
  1. Take a clean sponge. Remove the access cleaning solution with it.
  1. Rinse with clean water. 
  1. Repeat, if necessary. 
man cleaning white grout

FAQs for How to Clean Dark Grout that has Turned White

How can I keep my dark grout from turning white?

Make sure that you clean your grout on a regular basis to keep it from turning white. Sweep and vacuum your floors at least twice weekly. Ensure that no liquid stays on the grout lines while you clean.

Should I reseal the grout once I have finished cleaning it?

Yes, it is very important to reseal the grout once you have finished cleaning it. It will not only prevent discoloration but will make it very easy for you to keep the grout clean as well.

Are commercial cleaners a good choice for cleaning dark grout?

No. You should resort to commercial cleaners as the very last option since they are likely to etch the lining of your grout. It is better to go with homemade, non-toxic solutions. If they don’t work, then you can go for a safe commercial cleaner.

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