How to Clean Glass Shower Doors to Make Them Sparkle

By Erin Lindholm


Whether it’s the shower in your own bathroom, a kids tub and shower, or even a vacation rental that needs a little extra TLC, it’s a skill to know how to clean glass shower doors. Hard water stains, soap scum, those corners where mildew starts to creep in — it all detracts from the fresh and clean feeling of the shower. If hotels can maintain sparkling clean glass shower doors in bathrooms in hundreds of rooms, surely the average household can manage one, two, or a few, right?


This brings us to the purpose of this guide: To explain the how’s and why’s of shower build-up and share our best store-bought cleaning solutions and DIY solutions to clean glass shower doors. Sparkling clean shower doors, here we come.

how to clean glass shower doors

Photo via Ltd26585835


Why Do Glass Shower Doors Get Dirty?


The short answer? Glass shower doors get dirty just the same as the windshield of your car or the windows ( and window screens) on your home. Though not exposed to the outdoors, shower doors are constantly in use and in a high-traffic location. Over time, factors like hard water and poor ventilation lead to a greater accumulation of streaky, cloudy residue on your glass shower doors and moisture, making it the perfect habitat for mildew and mold.


How to Clean Glass Shower Doors with Vinegar


For a shower door cleaning solution, you’ve got a few options here — one of which is to make your own spray cleaner using vinegar, which naturally contains a light percentage of acetic acid (the grime-cutting agent). Here’s how to make your own DIY shower cleaning spray.


Tools and Materials

  • ½ cup vinegar
  • ¼ cup liquid dish soap
  • Spray bottle


Step 1: Mix Ingredients

Mix the two parts vinegar and one part dish soap in a spray bottle. Shake the bottle to mix.


Step 2: Spray Shower Door

Liberally spray down the glass shower door—especially the inside, and including all of the crevices and joints of the door.


Step 3: Let Sit and Rinse

After spraying the solution, let sit for 10-20 minutes. Then, rinse the shower doors with clean water using the showerhead or a bucket of water. The strong vinegar smell will dissipate as it is rinsed.


How to Deep Clean Glass Shower Doors with Baking Soda


When glass shower doors have been neglected (oops!) they need that much more TLC to get back to sparkling clean. The vinegar-based solution above is fine for a regular DIY maintenance, but to really cut through hardened layers of grime, try a baking soda treatment, which is a natural abrasive that’s also gentle on surfaces.


Tools and Materials

  • Baking soda
  • Shallow plate or bowl
  • Old kitchen sponge


Step 1: Make Cleaning Mixture

Pour a generous amount of baking soda into a shallow plate or bowl. (As a tip, a clean, plastic takeout container works wonderfully for this purpose, if you have those around.)


Step 2: Dip Sponge in Mixture

Dampen your sponge and dip it into the loose and dry baking soda.


Step 3: Scrub Shower Door

Firmly scrub the door down. If you hear the baking soda make a subtle “fizz” noise, you’re doing it right! The active component of baking soda, sodium bicarbonate, is at work cutting the grease.


Step 4: Rinse

Once you’ve scrubbed down the entire surface area of the shower door, rinse down with the showerhead or a bucket of clean water.

how to keep glass shower doors clean

Photo via Alexis @ Chemistry Cachet


How to Keep Glass Shower Doors Clean


Once your glass shower doors are sparkling and clean to your satisfaction, the key to keeping them as such is always prevention. When used regularly, a  shower squeegee goes a long way towards preventing the accumulation of water spots or sudsy residue over time. Squeegee your glass shower doors after the last shower of the day or evening every day. It’s the same basic principle as leaving dirty dishes or cookware out overnight, which makes any food bits harder to scrub the next day. Letting any hard water or soapy residue dry onto your glass shower doors makes the effort to restore them that much more Herculean when you finally get around to it. On top of that, clean the doors with a grime-cutting solution (such as one of the DIY options above) at least once a week to achieve that extra level of shine. 


Products for Cleaning Glass Shower Doors


Sometimes, you might want a quick, already-made solution to clean your glass shower doors in a pinch. Here are a few products for getting into all of the corners of how to clean glass shower doors:


OXO Grips Stainless Steel Squeegee 

This squeegee will be your shower’s new best friend. The soft, flexible rubber blade works on smooth glass shower doors, rippled glass surfaces, and tiles, too. The squeegee comes with its own suction cup holder so it won’t ever be underfoot or out of place when not in use. 

 

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Variety Pack 

When it comes to grease and grime, these scrubbing pads are a household game-changer. Mr. Clean makes lavender-scented foaming pads for bathroom jobs, which cut through soap scum and make quick work of cleaning your glass shower doors, as well as cleaning shower door tracks and preventing mildew build-up in general.


Kaboom Foam Tastic Bathroom Cleaner 

What’s not to love about a powerful deep-cleaner that’s light on elbow grease? Infused with OxiClean stain-fighting bubbles, this foaming cleaner sprays on blue and turns white when it’s ready to be wiped off, leaving sparkling surfaces behind.

 

Method Daily Shower Spray Cleaner, Eucalyptus Mint 

Method’s fresh-smelling, plant-based daily cleaner goes a long way towards preventing soap scum from accumulating in your shower in the first place. The best part? Just spray-and-go, because the cleaner doesn’t need to necessarily be rinsed away. (Although you still want to finish squeegeeing those glass shower doors.)

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