How To Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White [4 Easy Ways]

Dark grout is popularly used for grouting bathroom and kitchen tiles. It’s mainly to conceal dirt better. So, if they start to fade into a lighter color, it starts to look odd. Hence you have a fix to save the day for you!

Now you can clean your grout lines with a vinegar and baking soda combination. Just add the mixture to a spray bottle and scrub the area. Moreover, using chlorine solution would also be a good choice. You can also use a grout cleaner for the process or even toothpaste. 

Need a little more details about the procedure. Well, we have one right below. So head over to the section below to get started!

Why Is My Dark Grout Turning White?

You must be asking why your dark grout is turning white in the first place. We’ve all the answers for you in this segment. Let’s dive in to see what exactly the issues are-

Reason 1: Efflorescence

Firstly, efflorescence is the most common cause of dark grout turning white. Basically the salt and other minerals from the water gets stuck on the porous surface. As a result, a white coating is formed on your dark grout. 

Efflorescence can occur due to moisture being trapped underneath the slab. Besides this, grout can sometimes turn white due to rain in an outdoor installation. Or, in rare situations, from water that is used in cleaning the floor.

Reason 2: Grout Polymers

Another reason could be grout that contains polymer was utilized. So in case, too much water was used, the polymers get on the surface. Hence creating the white haze on the grout!

Reason 3: Cleaning Solvents Not Properly Cleaned

Moreover, in many of the cases, the reason can be the cleaner itself. That is the residue of the cleaner can turn the grout white. Thus it leaves a white detergent residue which forms a layer over the grout.

Well now that you know the reasons behind why this is happening, We can move into the process now!

How To Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White

4 Efficient Ways To Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White

Now we have listed below 4 different techniques to get the whiteness out of the grout. These are all really effective methods that’ll get the job done in no time. Moreover, you can fins almost all the materials in your house!

Method 1: Using A Mixture Of Vinegar And Baking Soda

Vinegar And Baking Soda

Vinegar is ideal in the case of cleaning dark grout. When you add baking soda to it, you get a formidable solution. So, wondering how to use it? Let’s find out!

First and foremost, sweep your floor with a brush and fully clean the surface. Additionally, use the vacuum cleaner to remove any leftover particles.

Then, combine equal parts vinegar and soda in a spray bottle to make a mixture. However, if you don’t have baking soda, detergent soap will also work as well. 

Next, allow the mixture to settle for a few minutes after stirring well. And you’re good to go. On a side note, if you add warm water to the mixture, it’ll be even more potent. 

Now, spray the mixture onto your grout and make sure to not miss any spots. After you’ve coated the entire surface, allow the solution 30 minutes to work its magic. 

Don’t leave the mixture for too long because you’ll risk damaging the tiles. Once 30 minutes have passed, scrub the surface with a brush really well. Repeat the process where necessary. 

Finally, rinse the floor with warm water. This should remove any remaining vinegar and baking soda from the grout. Moreover, the mixture could create lumps on the floor tiles if not properly cleaned. So, make sure that doesn’t take place.

And that’s it! After this, you’ll notice that the dark color of your grout is back. Apart from dark grout, cleaning Saltillo tiles using vinegar is a great option.

Method 2: Using Chlorine Solution

Chlorine Solution

Chlorine solution will work wonders when it comes to restoring the grout’s original color. Now chlorine is a pretty dense chemical, so put on your mask and gloves.

Now combine 2:1 parts of chlorine and water. This should be similar to the texture of toothpaste. Now using a sponge, apply this mixture on the grout line. 

Allow the paste to settle for 6 to 8 minutes on the grout. Once again it’s imperative that you don’t leave the mixture on for more than that. 

Next, scrub the grout lines with a firm grout brush. Now that we’re on this topic, here are some of the most recommended brush for the process.

Product 1Product 2
 Grout Brush with Stiff Bristles. JIGA 2 Pack Floor Scrub Brush.

We hope these grout brushes serve you really well. Let us now proceed with the guide.

Once you’re done scrubbing, the grout should quickly revert to its original color. Consequently, you’ll also see the removal of molds and mildew from tiles. You can also use this process to eliminate dried thinset from tile surfaces.

Method 3: Using A Grout Cleaner

A Grout Cleaner

There are some cleaners that are exclusively made for cleaning grout. You’ll be able to get them at any store near you. Now you can get yourself one of those and follow the steps mentioned below to clean.

Mix the cleaner and water in a large container as per the package directions. Using inappropriate amounts can ruin the texture of the cleaner. Plus it might not work well!

Now take your sponge and coat all the grout lines with the mixture. Let the solution set in for about 5 minutes.

When you’re finished, use the grout brush and firmly clean the grout lines. As you scrub, you’ll see that the dark color of the grout is gradually returning. Remove any excess cleaning solution with a sponge.

After that, rinse the grout lines and tile with fresh water. Finally, sponge up the water to wrap up the cleaning. 

Besides cleaning the grout lines, it also preps your floor. So, if you were planning on making your matte floors shine, then this is the best time!

Method 4: Using Toothpaste


Although using toothpaste to clean grout might be unconventional, it is nonetheless an efficient method.

To begin, squirt some toothpaste onto a clean towel. Then, start rubbing the toothpaste evenly across the grout’s surface. After that, wait till the toothpaste has completely dried. The drying process might take 10 to 15 minutes.

Once the toothpaste has dried, wipe the surface with a moist towel. Finally, repeat the procedure but this time with a dry cloth. You’ll see that the white stains are gone from the grout.

However, instead of toothpaste, you can also use lemon juice for the cleaning process. The acidity in the lemon will help take off the whiteness from the grout lines.

These methods will help you in restoring the dark color of the grout you desire. 


Question: How do I prevent dark grout from going white?

Answer: Proper maintenance will prevent your dark grout from discoloring. Be sure to clean your grout regularly. It’d be wise if you sweep and vacuum at least twice a week. Also, make sure you don’t leave any liquid on the grout lines for longer periods.

Question: Is it important to reseal the grout after cleaning it?

Answer: Yes it is. Sealing the grout will help create a protective surface. This’ll prevent the grout from discoloring again. Furthermore, you’ll have a much easier time keeping the grout clean as well. 

Question: Will abrasive cleaners be a good choice to clean dark grout?

Answer: Nope. Abrasive cleansers can disintegrate cementitious mortar found in the grout. In addition to that, abrasive cleaners can etch the lining of the grout as well. Before deciding to use a cleaner, you should always look it up. In that way, you’ll know which is safe to use. 


Well, this ends our segment on how to clean dark grout that has turned white. Now we’ve detailed the process as much as we could. Hopefully, you’ll use one of the methods to get the job done!

However, if you need someone to help you out with the process, you can call a professional!

With that being said, we’ll take our leave. Goodbye and best of luck!

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