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How to clean an enamel bathtub

Bathing in a dirty enamel bathtub isn't going to leave you feeling fresh! Learn what to use to clean a bathtub, and how best to look after the enamel, here.


Reading Time: 5 minutes

By Cleanipedia Team

duck in an enamel bathtub
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Key Steps

Remember these 5 rules to cleaning your bathtub:

  1. Choose the right cleaning solution for your bathtub's material. Test on a small area first.

  2. Clean from one end of the bath to the other, leaving accessories such as taps until last.

  3. Scrub at stubborn stains using a cloth or scourer, if safe to do so. Follow our tips on removing bathtub stains for more help.

  4. Rinse your bathtub thoroughly after cleaning.

  5. Make cleaning your bath part of your regular bathroom cleaning routine. 

There’s nothing better than a long soak in the bath to keep us relaxed and sparkling. However, if your bath is grubbier than your body, the only thing you’ll be thinking about is how to clean enamel – hardly an indulgent thought at the worst of times.

Fortunately, learning how to clean enamel bath suites doesn't have to be a chore, and while soap scum and water stains may be common signs of a well-loved tub, they don’t exactly suggest the best environment to wash away the worries of the day. Luckily with a little everyday care, you’ll never need to ask how to clean a bathtub again. So then you can sit back, relax, and feel assured that the hard work’s already been done next time you go for a soak. Here's how to clean a dirty bathtub! 

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Enamel bathtubs are not scratchproof, so avoid using a scrubbing brush. Clean the bathtub without scrubbing by using a specially designed bathroom cleaner like those from Cif and Domestos, using a sponge or cloth to tackle dirt and stains. This will help to remove stains without damaging the enamel! Always test on a small inconspicuous area before widespread use.

How to clean an enamel bath

Whenever you are cleaning enamel or a large area, be sure to ventilate the space by opening windows and doors. Protecting yourself is essential and it’s always worth covering your hands and face with gloves and protective eyewear.

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If you're looking to deep clean your bathtub, there are a number of effective cleaning solutions available that specifically target bathroom grime. Products from Cif and Domestos are a good place to start if you're wondering what to use to clean a bathtub. Always carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions and test any new product on a small inconspicuous area first.

  • Apply the solution with a sponge or clean cloth, avoiding abrasive scourers or steel brushes as these could scratch and damage the surface of your bathtub. Avoid contact with skin and always follow the safety guidelines listed on the product.

  • Once clean, wipe and rinse away the cleaning product to prevent any lingering residue and discolouration – particularly useful if you're wondering how to clean an old bathtub with tough-to-tackle stains. Have a look at this article specifically about cleaning old bath tubs. 

How to clean an enamel bath with natural products

While commercial cleaning products are completely safe to use, there are plenty of natural, household ingredients that can help do the job too. 

  • Spraying a solution of water and white vinegar all over the bathtub provides an effective deep-clean that can help treat stains or residue. Leave the mixture to rest for 15 minutes before wiping off with a clean sponge or cloth. Rinse and wipe as before.

  • Heavy stains and rings might need tougher action. To attack this, try sprinkling baking soda on the problem area and spray with your mix of white vinegar and water. The mixture will bubble and fizz, letting you know the solution’s working. After 15 minutes, wipe away with a clean cloth or sponge and thoroughly rinse and dry the bathtub with warm water.

Safety Warning

Use biocides safely. Always read the label and product information before use.

How to clean bathtub rust

Rust is a little trickier to shift than your everyday scum and grime, but easily tackled nonetheless. Commercial cleaning products specifically made for removing rust are extremely effective, but be careful to wear gloves and don’t mix with other chemicals. Always read the instructions on the product carefully and be sure to ventilate the area well. Avoid contact with skin. 

Everyday care for your bathtub

It's not all about what to use to clean a bathtub, it's also about how often! After bathing, rinse the bathtub with clean, warm water and sponge away excess moisture to prevent drying stains. It’s small, everyday actions like these which will not only save you time in the long-run but keep your tub looking tip-top for years to come.

Originally published