While glass shower doors with frames were once the cutting edge of bathroom design, now the trend has shifted to frameless doors that present a nearly seamless glass enclosure experience. With no metal frames to trap dirt or distract the eye, these frameless shower doors are both attractive and relatively easy to keep clean. However, they can still develop permanent water spots and tough soap scum stains if you fail to keep up with the right cleaning routine. These five tips will keep your frameless shower doors sparkling and nearly invisible.
Invest in a Squeegee
Starting a daily routine of removing water droplets at the end of every shower is the best way to reduce your need for deep cleaning and glass restoration in the future. Some people use a towel to quickly wipe down the frameless glass shower door and the surrounding glass panels, but a small squeegee is the fastest tool. Hang one in the shower so that everyone who uses the shower remembers to give the glass a quick cleaning before they exit. Removing water droplets prevents hard water stains and cuts down on soap scum accumulation at the same time.
Clean with Vinegar
Even if you squeegee daily, you'll eventually get a few streaks here and there of soap scum that you miss during your end-of-shower cleaning routine. While there are many glass cleaners on the market, products containing ammonia can damage the seals around the edges of your shower enclosure.
White vinegar does a good job of breaking down any soap scum and similar residue on the glass while leaving it streak free and perfectly clear. The same treatment can help with recently formed water spots, but you'll need to mist on the vinegar and let it soak for a little bit before scrubbing with a non-abrasive sponge or cloth.
Seal the Glass
Many homeowners choose frameless glass shower doors because they assume that glass is a non-porous material with a perfectly smooth surface. While glass is technically non-porous, it still has a rough enough surface to trap debris like soap scum while feeling smooth to the touch. Applying a sealant similar to the products used on natural stone, which is usually done prior to installation by the manufacturer, can reduce the need to clean and refinish your glass shower doors in the future. Since frameless shower doors have even fewer distractions, it's easier to notice water spots and soap scum deposits. Paying a little extra for a sealant coating can prevent those spots from detracting from the beauty of your shower door in the future.
There are also some products that are applied after the shower door is installed. However, those sealants can potentially seal in any existing water spots or marks as well, so these coatings are most effective when applied as early as possible after the shower door is installed.
Try Non-Abrasive Cream Cleansers
When there's a stubborn deposit on your frameless shower door that doesn't respond to vinegar and wiping, it's time to try something stronger that still won't damage the glass. Cream cleansers that are labeled as non-abrasive and safe for glass do a good job of polishing away stubborn deposits with no scouring or scratching effect. Check with the manufacturer of the shower door to see if they recommend a specific cleaning product.
Scrub with a Fabric Softener Sheet
Finally, you can also repurpose some household items into safe scrubbing tools for cleaning frameless shower enclosures. The chemicals used in fabric softeners are also surprisingly effective at lifting soap residue, and the fibers used in making the pre-treated sheets offer a gentle scrubbing action without harming the glass. Rinse the glass after you're done and there should be no residue left behind, either from soap scum or the fabric softener sheet.
For more information on shower doors, contact a company like A United Window Inc.