How To Clean Glass Shower Doors Effectively (DIY Cleaner)

Learn how to clean glass shower doors & maintain them using simple DIY cleaners. Tackle those moldy metal shower tracks & learn to use Rain-X creatively.

Does the term “scum” conjure up anything pleasant at all?

Uh no, not so much.

Add to it the descriptive noun, “soap,” and the location – my bathroom’s glass shower doors – and you have a sad, white or gray filmy layer that obscures what could be a sparkling, cozy retreat.

Soap scum forms from the minerals in tap water combining with soap and dirt to create a scaly layer over surfaces, also known as limescale. It can be difficult to remove as it continuously builds up, and can in fact etch into glass if left too long.

On its own, soap scum is merely unattractive. But it can combine with mold or mildew to become dangerous as well as unsightly. Daily squeegeeing or wiping down with a microfiber cloth is a great way to keep glass shower doors clean, but if you need to go from grimy to pristine, we can help you get (and stay) there.

 

Video Tutorial

Jeff Patterson, the Home Repair Tutor, has a terrific You Tube video to walk you through an easy, efficient natural method on how to clean glass shower doors.

If you prefer to read through the steps, they are broken down for you down below in this post.

Most of the supplies this method uses you already own – the rest are easy to acquire and inexpensive:

 

Supplies You Will Need

white vinegar arm and hammer baking soda orange box

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

Here’s what you’ll need:

– White vinegar
– Baking soda
– Spoon
– Small container
– Non-scratch Scrub Sponge (6 pack)
– Window scrubber
– Shower water
– Window squeegee
– Paper towels

It will take about half an hour, but fortunately about half of that time is spent waiting for the baking soda to do its thing while you catch up on some ‘net surfing, TV, or napping.

 

“Leetle” Chemistry Sidenote

This works because you are combining acetic acid (vinegar) with sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) to make carbonic acid. This is quite unstable so you’ll see it fizzing as carbon dioxide is released, leaving a diluted solution of water and sodium acetate. It’s the mild sodium acetate solution that you’re safely cleaning with.

 

Steps for Removing Soap Scum from Shower Doors

1) Scoop 1/2 cup of baking soda into your plastic container.

2) Pour in sufficient white vinegar to form a paste.

3) Mix with your spoon.

glazed shower door gold handle vinegar baking soda paste spoon

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

4) Enjoy the fizzing CO2. Chemistry is fun!

5) Use the non-scratch sponge to scrape up some of the paste and wipe it on the glass shower door. Don’t worry if it gets on the floor, etc. as well; it’s mild enough to not cause any harm.

 

shower door sponge cleaning paste

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

6) Once the doors are covered, let sit for about 15 minutes.

7) After the paste has had time to work, use the window scrubber and water to thoroughly clean it off.

 

window cleaner glass shower door

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

8) Use the window squeegee and paper towels to dry the glass doors.

 

Other Natural Solutions for Removing Soap Scum

Jeff’s video and paste work wonderfully well. Just for the sake of variety, here are a few other natural options for cleaning soap scum from glass shower doors.

The simplest mix is a basic combination of half vinegar and half water – but it’s not known to be as effective.

Next up, try combining half vinegar and half dish soap.

For a natural, homemade daily shower cleaner spray, Beverly Leestma from The Make Your Own Zone, suggests mixing 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide with 1/2 cup alcohol, 1 tbsp dishwasher rinse aid, and 1 tsp liquid dish soap in a 32 oz spray bottle (just save one of the store bought bottles after using it up). Then, fill the bottle the rest of the way with water (about 3 cups) and gently slosh the combination.

 

Store Bought Cleaners

If you’re interested in shower door cleaners that are available in your local store, most of the daily sprays are about equally effective: Method Daily, Tilex Daily, Mrs. Meyers, etc.

Stepping a little outside of the box, some DIYers swear by the Magic Eraser sponge, or repurposed dryer sheets, wet down and used as scrubbing instruments.

Another popular alternative cleaners is the powdered version of the Bar Keepers Friend. Simply wet the glass doors, shake out the cleaner on a non-scratch sponger and scrub. Similarly, you can try Krud Kutter mixed 1:5 with water in a spray bottle for especially stubborn soap scum.

 

Cleaning the Metal Shower Tracks

Of course, once the glass doors are done, the next chore you have to turn to are those pesky metal tracks that can easily build up mold and mildew. To clean these efficiently, plug up any drainage holes and fill up the track with vinegar. Let it sit for a few hours or overnight if you can, then drain and wipe clean.

 

Prevention

The only thing better than having a clean shower is never having to clean it ever again. First thing you want to do is to ban bar soap. That’s because bar soaps almost universally contain talc, which produces build up.

Try a non-talc soap (like Dove, or most natural-style soaps) or switch to a liquid body wash. This will significantly reduce soap scum immediately.

If you’re ready to take it a step further, it’s time to get creative and use car wax or Rain X for showers. Seriously.

Rain-X glass shower doors tan and white tiles

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

These protective films you usually use on the glass in your car will work equally well on the glass in your bathroom.

The protective film will keep soap scum away, and make water just bead up and slide off. You will have a Teflon shower.

Just make sure to apply either product to a clean shower, and to be careful to clean up any spots on the floor – you do not need a Teflon bathroom floor!

 

microfiber cloth Rain-X shower glass doors

Image via The Home Repair Tutor

We hope you enjoyed learning how to clean your glass shower doors and keep them squeaky clean! Let us know your challenges and successes in the comments because we love to learn together.

We’ve got the squeegee and baking soda/vinegar trick already mastered at home, and are planning to apply Rain-X ASAP!

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