How to Remove Scale from Shower Doors

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Soap scum and chalky white buildup on your shower doors makes your otherwise clean bathroom look dirty. The chalky white buildup is lime scale. This occurs because of hard water and humidity. Just like soap scum, lime scale is resistant to cleaning with standard glass cleaner. It is necessary to break down the scale with acid to remove scale from the shower doors. Fortunately, the acid remover necessary is probably already in your kitchen pantry. This not only removes scale but also the soap scum buildup on your shower doors.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic spray bottle
  • White vinegar
  • Bucket
  • Sheet
  • Two-sided scrubbing sponge
  • Glass cleaner
  • Paper towels

Fill a plastic spray bottle with a solution of equal parts white vinegar and water. The acid in white vinegar cuts through and loosens the lime scale on the shower doors. Fill a bucket with clean water. Lay a sheet in the bottom of the tub or shower to protect the finish as you work inside the tub or shower.

Spray the inside of the shower door liberally with the vinegar solution. Ensure you spray the metal frame around the glass as well. Allow the vinegar solution to work for 10 minutes, loosening up the lime scale buildup.

Dip a scrubbing sponge into the water, and wring it out to remove excess water. Scrub the shower door with the scrubbing side of the sponge, applying light pressure. As the sponge dries out, dip it in the water again and wring it out.

Scrub the entire inside of the shower door, ensuring you scrub where the glass meets the metal frame. Do not use the scrubbing side of the sponge on the metal frame, as it might cause scratches. Wipe the metal frame with the smooth side of the sponge.

Dip the sponge in the water and squeeze it out. Wipe the shower door from top to bottom with the smooth side of the sponge. Rinse the sponge periodically as you wipe down the entire door.

Spray glass cleaner onto the door, and clean with paper towels. Continue until all the glass on the door is clear and the metal frame is free of streaks.

Tips & Warnings

  • Spray the shower doors with white vinegar before taking a shower to prevent scale buildup.
  • Commercial lime removal cleaners are available at home improvement centers. Always read the directions on the bottle before using these types of cleaners.
  • Always open windows and turn on the exhaust fan when using commercial cleaners. Some use ingredients that cause toxic fumes.

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