Silicone joints on the window / shower clean - tips and home remedies
- Clean silicone joints
- baking powder
- mildew spray
- steam cleaners
- Renew joints
- Tips for quick readers
The tiled mirror can sparkle so nicely - if the joints between them yellowed or full of mold, then it is over with the beautiful sight. For tile mortar can usually be restored with vigorous brushing the high quality sight. The soft silicone joints, however, are much more sensitive. Read in this post everything you need to know about cleaning silicone joints.
Abandonment of silicone
The silicone under windows, on the edge of the bathtub and in the shower is not just for decoration. Its most important task is to create a watertight transition between the tiles and the internals. A dense fugue protects the wall behind from moisture damage. Missing or damaged joints can cause a creeping water damage, which usually causes expensive repairs. Fortunately, a silicone seam will tell you long before it needs to be replaced. Unlike mineral fillers, silicone joints can not be painted over. This is annoying when they are yellowed with dust. On the other hand, a white silicone joint is always a clean joint. So these sealing joints contribute to the general hygiene in the house.
Reasons for damaged silicone
Silicone is a plastic-based, rubber-like material. It consists of a large amount of plasticizers and a filler. The problem is that both are organic substances. The plasticizer is incompatible with most microorganisms. Guest of these with the time but out, form microcracks, in which first dust and then mold can fix. But before the "black plague" strikes, the joints present a strong yellowing. This is a sign that additional organic material has settled on the silicone layer. Now you have to act, because the mold will not be long in coming. This is especially true in warm moist rooms such as the bathroom. This climate favors the growth of the mold especially.
Which joints can be saved ">
When the fugue has yellowed, mostly only dust has settled on it. On the other hand, black spots are a clear warning sign - here the mold has already struck. If the whole fugue is already black, cleaning will not do much good. The mold has already penetrated too deeply and can not be removed even with massive means. If the silicone joints are already cracked and brittle, it is time to renew them anyway. Fortunately, this is done in a few simple steps.
Why is mold dangerous?>
The black mold belongs to the family of mushrooms. He loves warm humid environments and organic nutrient media. From the body molds are perceived as antigens. He responds to an excessive infestation with black mold with defense. In the worst case, this can lead to an allergy. Mold spores weaken the immune system. Since they always grow in humid environments, colds to the point of inflammation of the lungs are the result. There is only one place where mold should be tolerated: on the cheese of the same name in the fridge. But then that is the harmless blue sky. Everywhere else in the house, the dangerous spore source has lost nothing. Mold damage indicates damp walls or poorly ventilated rooms. If a hotspot in the shape of a moldy fugue is already in the house, it makes the black plague all the easier to spread. That's why - a mold attack is fought and not ignored.
Here you can learn more about black mold and how to deal with infestation: eliminate black mold
Clean silicone joints
... against dust and mold on silicone joints
If the joint is moldy or yellowed, renewal is only the last option. Before that, all attempts should be made to get the joint clean again. Setting a new silicone sheet in a joint is not difficult, but it does not smell very pleasant and it has to be done professionally. Otherwise you will quickly have the next leaking joint in the house. In the fight against dust and mold, the following remedies have proven particularly useful:
- baking powder
- steam cleaners
- Mold chlorine-based control spray
Vinegar is the number one natural cleaner. This dirt-cheap and highly effective universal cleaner should not be missing in any household. It does not even have to be a pronounced "vinegar cleaner". Highly concentrated vinegar essence for 80 cents per bottle serves the same purpose. In the ratio 1: 4 mixed, you get an effective cleaning agent. This not only combats the dust in an instant. The deeply penetrating into the silicone joints acetic acid also makes the last mold Spore the finish. But beware - unlike with the treatment of calcified surfaces, when dealing with vinegar essence is by no means "much helps a lot". The specification for dilution should be followed, otherwise the homemade vinegar cleaner can attack the silicone in the worst case. After treatment with vinegar, the silicone joints are washed off with clear water. So mold can be fought already in the emergence.
Baking soda is the wonder of hobby chemists. The also very cheap baking propellant is good for some experiment. Just when rusting small parts, baking soda works wonders. The few cent expensive bags therefore belong in every supply of cleaning agents. To combat mold and dust on silicone joints, soften it with baking soda and water. This is applied to the joints as soon as they have yellowed. Particularly effective here is the use of an old toothbrush. Another advantage of the toothbrush is that it can not exert too much pressure on the silicone joints. After rubbing one hour is waited. Then the baking soda porridge is washed off again with clear water. If some spots are still yellowed, simply repeat the process.
Chlorine is the chemical mold fighter number 1. This irritant gas is very effective - but handling is not without its dangers. It can attack the respiratory tract. When treating silicone joints with anti-mold spray, always ensure good ventilation. Mold spray is also not very expensive, but it is much higher price than vinegar essence or baking soda. So before the 3-5 euros are spent on a spray bottle, worth the attempts with the cheaper home remedies. But this should really be the utmost in chlorine-containing agents that you want to use against silicone joints. Please refrain from experiments with toilet cleaner or chlorine granules from the pharmacy. Health more important than a joint that does not turn yellow, moldy and without dust.
The steam cleaner is the best friend when it comes to demanding cleaning tasks in the house. The hot steam is absolutely free of chemicals - but acts as aseptic as a highly effective disinfectant. The steam pressure is also the best weapon against dirty corners, which can not be reached with rags and even with the toothbrush. However, the hot steam is not completely safe with silicone. The combination of heat and vapor pressure can shoot the silicone joints out of their anchorage. When using with the steam cleaner you should therefore proceed with caution. An attached joint brush on the steam cleaner is not so beneficial in a silicone joint: you scratch out the joint rather than clean it. However, the effectiveness of the steam cleaner is increased if the joint has previously been treated with vinegar or baking soda.
But beware - a steam cleaner is not a high pressure cleaner! A steam cleaner heats about one liter of water to superheated steam in its own tank. Since one liter of water is heated to 1650 liters of steam, the resulting pressure is quite sufficient. Using a high-pressure cleaner to clean joints only results in the entire bathroom having to be renovated.
If all is of no use, only a new fugue will help. Fortunately, grouting with silicone is especially easy. The cartridges cost 5-8 euros not the world. Also, the removal of the joint is very simple: A sharp cutter is enough to scratch out the joint filling. However, a clear increase in safety is obtained by using a joint knife or joint scraper. This tool with 7-12 Euro expensive makes the handling with the super sharp cutter superfluous. Simply pulled across the joint, the joint scraper usually cuts out the entire joint completely with just one pass.
This is also necessary, because to put a new joint made of silicone, the old filler must be completely removed. Then the joint is thoroughly cleaned and filled with a new strip of silicone. For removal, the hardware stores also offer cheap but very practical tools. With 1-5 euros you get such a helper for the perfect joint. A tip: If you stick the edges of tiles with Tesafilm, you get 100% straight joints: Simply peel off the Tesafilm after filling and before curing - and finished the super straight and smudge-free edge.
Tips for quick readers
- Examine joints accurately. Not every attempt at cleaning makes sense
- Always renew cracked and heavily moldy joints
- Use home remedies: vinegar and baking soda
- Always dilute vinegar essence
- Handle extremely carefully with chlorine cleaner and ventilate well
- When replacing joints, use a joint knife. This avoids accidents and injuries
- Never ignore mold, but always combat it
- If the gap turns yellow with dust, it is always worth trying to clean it