Do you have a porcelain tub? We have one…one of the really old and awesome claw-foot tubs. The porcelain tends to get really dingy and dull looking and and the water ring stains get on my nerves. I figured if you were in the same boat, you’d like to know how to safely clean a porcelain tub.
Sometimes those old, antique tubs really need to be resurfaced and there are professionals out there who do that. If you have a lot of chips or rust in the porcelain, there’s not much else you can do.
If your tub is still in great shape surface wise, you need to be cautious with the products you use to clean them. Bleach along with other harsh cleaners are way too rough on porcelain so you should use something much gentler. Those strong cleaners can scratch, pit and eventually destroy the porcelain over time.
How to Clean a Porcelain Tub
There are a few different things that I use on our old tub and they all do a great job so I wanted to share them with my fellow porcelain tub owners.
Just a little disclaimer: Your results may vary. Try a test spot before applying to the entire surface.
1. For tough hardwater rings/stains use Bar Keepers Friend. You can either use the liquid or the powder. If you’re using the powder, either make a paste with water before applying or make sure your tub bottom and walls are wet. Simply coat the stains and let it sit for an hour or so to work on those problem areas. Wipe down with a wet sponge or cloth. Repeat this process if necessary.
2. For brightening, whitening and general cleaning – use a paste made out of baking soda and water. This is very gentle on the porcelain surface and can be used as often as necessary. This is what we use most often.
Paste made out of baking soda and water. Just mix until creamy…I had to add a bit more water to this.
Other helpful tips:
– Rinse your tub well after bathing to remove leftover soap residue.
– Avoid using alot of bath oils.
– Drying your tub with a towel after each use can keep stains and rings from forming. I know, I know…who has time for that?! I never do that but then again, I’m one who has to fight with keeping our tub clean.
– Use non-scratch sponges or rags to clean your porcelain tub. Using abrasive scratch pads can and WILL scratch your porcelain.
Other Products to Clean a Porcelain Tub:
I only recommend the following on super tough stains as a last resort, if nothing else is working (including plain old elbow grease). Do not use as a general or daily cleaning method. Refer to the above treatments for normal daily cleaning after the stubborn stains are gone.
– Bleach (although I have heard that this can make stains worse)
– Hydrogen Peroxide
– Mr. Clean Magic Erasers
If you’ve had certain products work well for you over time or if you have other tips to clean a porcelain tub, drop us a comment and let us know. You never know when it could help someone else! I’m always looking for new ways to cut my cleaning time and make things a wee bit easier!!