How to keep a bathroom clean, sanitary and odor free

Knowing a bathroom’s trouble spots helps you plan the cleaning routine. The tub and shower are havens for mildew. Wiping them dry after each use discourages mildew and prevents the buildup of mineral deposits and soap scum. Extend wet shower curtains so that they dry thoroughly Leave the shower doors ajar so that air can circulate.

Scrub the tub, shower, and sink every week. Avoid harsh abrasives; used repeatedly, they mar the finish. Instead, use a mild abrasive, a liquid disinfectant cleaner, or your own homemade mixture; do the scrubbing with a sponge. If stronger measures are necessary, use a brush, plastic scouring pad, or nylon stocking. Clean caulking around the tub with a toothbrush and liquid disinfectant. Clean a suction-backed tub or shower mat occasionally with the same liquid cleaner. Stains on porcelain Clean stained porcelain surfaces with a paste of cream of tartar and hydrogen peroxide. Spread the paste over the stain and scrub lightly. Let the paste dry and then wipe or rinse it off.

Use a toilet-bowl cleaner weekly. Bleach poured into the bowl may remove stains. Wash the outside of the toilet with liquid disinfectant cleaner.

Caution: Don’t mix any combination of bleach, ammonia, and cleaners in the toilet bowl; a toxic gas results. If you are using two substances, flush away one before pouring in the other. Remove a commercial in-the-tank cleaner if one is in place. Sweep or vacuum the bathroom floor weekly. Then mop the floor with a damp mop or sponge, using a disinfectant cleaner. An occasional scrubbing with a tile and grout cleaner will help restore grayed grout. Or apply a liquid cleaner, let it stand for about 20 minutes, then scrub the floor with a brush.