Lemon vs. Mildew   1 comment

This weekend I tackled one of our usual spring cleaning chores, scrubbing out the mildew in the shower. We’re not doing full spring cleaning since at some point in the hopefully not too distant future we will be packing everything up to move, but there are just some things that need to be taken care of. Our bathroom does not have a vent, and especially during the winter when it is too cold outside to leave the window open, the mildew in the shower can become frightful.

When I moved in here five years ago the mildew in the shower was bad, really bad. Even after I finally got up the guts to tackle it with liberal amounts of bleach it was still really bad. So it became a twice-yearly ritual to scrub and then spray bleach and then scrub again. All this with the necessary breaks to prevent headaches from the bleach, and dealing with the lingering smell for a couple days even after rinsing the tile. It was really frustrating to suffer so much and still have mildew in the grout, and both my husband and I really hated dealing with the bleach. So last year I decided to try something new that I had heard about somewhere: using lemon to bleach out the mildew. The experiment last year wasn’t particularly successful, but I was using lemons that were cross pollinated with oranges and were therefore different. I suspect that they didn’t have all the properties of typical lemon, and they also had a higher sugar content so things got a little sticky. This weekend I tried it again using regular lemons, and I am sold.

It’s not a perfect comparison since it has now been over a year since the last time I used bleach on the tile and I don’t remember exactly how the tile looked afterwards anymore. Also, since we don’t have a prayer of getting all of the mildew out I’m not judging the lemon negatively for not getting all of the mildew out. The bleach never did. But I think the lemon needed less scrubbing, it took about the same amount of time to rub 4 lemon halves on the tile as spraying bleach on the walls, it smelled better and didn’t leave me with a headache, and I didn’t have to worry about damaging my clothing or the shower curtain (it’s hemp, not plastic). Plus, lemon is not toxic. Lemons are gradually becoming a heavy-duty-cleaning staple for me, since they are also great at removing hard water buildup. Unlike vinegar, lemons come with a convenient rind that can be used to hold the lemon in place while applying.

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Posted April 4, 2010 by mayakey in cleaning, home

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One response to “Lemon vs. Mildew

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  1. Lemons are really good,,They are even good for skin as well!

    Laying laminate flooring

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