The odor rising from the crevices or the discoloration that comes with urine that has soaked into grout will probably be enough to make you want to remove it. But urine in porous grout also makes an ideal space for bacteria to thrive, creating areas of odor that can be hard to trace. The right techniques and cleaners can quickly remove urine from grout in your living spaces without further damaging the material.
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Bleach to Remove Urine
While bleach is often a first choice as a cleaning agent for household spills and splotches, it's best to use a good dose of caution when using bleach to remove urine and odors from grout. Bleach contains chlorine, which, when mixed with the naturally occurring ammonia in urine, can create a noxious odor.
To safely remove urine and disinfect the grout with bleach, mix 1 part bleach with 10 parts of water. Molly Maid recommends 1 tablespoon of bleach to 1 gallon of water to sanitize the surface of the grout and remove slight discoloration from urine.
Allow the diluted bleach mixture to sit on the surface of the grout for a good five minutes before scrubbing the grout with a soft nylon brush or old toothbrush. Work the bleach solution into the grout and let it sit for a few more minutes before rinsing away and buffing dry. Never mix bleach with ammonia when cleaning grout. The two cleaners mixed together will create a noxious gas.
Remove Urine From Grout
Whisking away droplets or puddles of fresh urine from the tile floor will make the overall cleaning job easier. When you discover urine, immediately blot the area dry with a clean cloth. Don't rub or scrub at the urine. This will just push the foul liquid further into the porous surface of the grout and make it harder to remove the odor and stains.
A commercial enzyme cleaner can neutralize odors and remove bacteria. Let it soak into the grout for a few minutes before scrubbing. If the odor and stain persist, let the commercial cleaner sit for a longer period to work on the remaining bacteria and traces of urine. Follow up with a sprinkling of baking soda to wick away the moisture and pull up any residual spots of urine.
A grout cleaner can remove slight discolorations and make them much less noticeable. Always rinse the grout well and buff dry after using a grout cleaner.
Remove Pet Urine From Grout
Pets are part of the family, but they sometimes forget the rules. When Fido or Fluffy finds it necessary to piddle on the tile floor, the urine leaves behind odors that make it more tempting for them or a fellow fur friend to think it's an acceptable place to pee. Removing pet odors as soon as they are discovered can cut back on the odor and staining.
Arizona Tile & Stone Specialist recommends using white vinegar and baking soda, lemon juice or diluted bleach to remove pet urine from the porous grout. Avoid using ammonia when cleaning cat urine from grout. Feline urine contains ammonia and cleaning with it may attract the cats to the spot to pee again.
Kimberley McGee is an award-winning journalist with 20+ years of experience writing for a variety of clients, including The New York Times, Las Vegas Review-Journal Home section and other national publications. As a professional writer she has researched, interviewed sources and written about home improvement, interior design and related business trends. She earned a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Her full bio and clips can be viewed at www.vegaswriter.com.