Just a few months ago, I installed the tile in my bathroom. I took lots
of care to make sure the grout filled all the spaces between the tiles,
sealed the grout, and used caulk where walls met and where the tile met
Now, as you can see in the linked pics below, this grey mildew is
appearing only on the caulk. It only appears in this area, where the
tiles meet the tub, and where water is prone to collect after a shower.
I have been diligent about drying it recently, but regardless, I can't
seem to scrub the mildew off.
1) Is this mildew coming from any source that I should be concerned
about, aside from the water that collects there?
2) What can I do to prevent mildew from growing in the caulk?
3) How can I clean this stuff? Or do I need to pull the caulk out and
Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
My experience is along similiar lines as yours. New tile, new caulk mildew. Once mildew starts growing on caulk , its in there. Time to scrap
the caulk off and start over. The only way I got rid of it (partially) was
to roll a paper towel into a tube, soak it in bleach, and lay it on the
caulk. Then lay a piece of plastic wrap over that to retard drying. Give it
over night to bleach out. Guess what: it came back within 2 weeks.
I ended up scraping out the old caulk, cleaning with a solvent, scraping
with a razor blade, and then bleaching the clean surface and than reapplying
I find that the type of caulk makes a difference. The worst was DAP latex
tub and tile caulk. THe best (and whats been on there now for a year without
any sign of mildew) was GE Silicone I. GE Silicone II was better than DAP
but still eventually mildewed. MY theory is that anything with a paintable
surface (DAP and GE Silicone II) will eventually collect dirt that mildew
will feed on. GE Silicone I is nonpaintable and has a slick surface that
nothing sticks too.
The caulk I used is Color Caulk Premium Tile & Fixture Caulk. It has a
picture of a rooster as the logo.
Has anyone else had a bad experience with this brand?
I will look for GE Silicone II in Bright While to match my grout, and
it sounds like I need to scrape the works off and start over.
Still open to any other opinions though.
I am not sure what the original question was but I have had excellent
results with GE Silicon II caulk. Anything with latex in it should be
avoided, based on my experience. I used to get cheap caulk but now I
look for the most expensive and so far I am pleased with the results.
I am not sure Clorox is the answer. I had covered some perfectly good
grout with some mildew resistant caulk that I was using when we
installed a new shower door. Not long after, the caulk started turning
gray and nothing I sprayed on it would bleach it out. I ended up
having to pull out the caulk. The grout underneath was okay - not
great looking which is the reason I covered it with clear caulk in the
first place - but not mildewed either.
The caulk I put on the door did not mildew. Don't know why.
You need to remove the caulk completely, clean the line with straight
bleach, let dry, wipe with denatured alcohol. When completely dry,
recaulk. Have to have a smoothe caulk bead so it doesn't collect soap
scum and other shower detritus.
We just redid the grout in our shower. In spite of having scrubbed the
tile a lot, I discovered the lower part, around soap dish, had thick
soap scum. Got out the razor blade and scraped gobs of soap scum from
the tile. After regrout and seal, we installed a timer on our exhaust
fan so we can leave it on a while to dry out the room better. I also
wipe the tile every few showers. With less soap scum, there should be
less mold but your caulk looks like it had mildew under it when the
caulk was applied. The room needs ventillation, as well.
Bleach it for a few hours with waching machine bleach. That will remove
the color. However, hopefully your caulk is color fast. sometimes the
white can be bleached out and it will then be dull. I covered by shower
in some kind of sealant that was supposed to stop this. I don't think
it was worth a 8hit. Bleach it when it shows, and clean the shower
diligently. Run the bathroom fan, and no pee in the shower...
OK, I did put some bleach-soaked paper towels on it last night and that
cleared it right up! I will see how often it comes back, but that was a
painless cleaning method, and smelled fine because I used lemony-fresh
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