It’s not uncommon for light-coloured grout to darken or brown over time. There are many causes of grout discolouration, including stains that remain after a rigorous DIY cleaning. There are preventative steps you can take to slow the rate of grout discolouration and breakdown, but most grout will eventually need some professional attention. Read below to learn about the main causes of grout discolouration, and what you can do to get your grout looking fresh and clean again!

Why does grout change colour?

To understand the main causes of grout discolouration, it’s important to know why grout changes colour. Grout, like most natural stone, is naturally porous. This allows dirt, grime, and water particles to absorb into the grout like a sponge. So, it’s more difficult to remove deeply settled stains from grout than it is to clean closed, hard surfaces. So what exactly is causing the discoloration?

Daily cleaning can be detrimental.

Cleaning your grout almost daily with different detergents and commercial cleaners may be one reason that your grout is turning brown. Cleaners mixed with water infiltrate the porous grout surfaces. Once these solutions are embedded into the grout, the water and cleaners dry, sealing dirt and discolouration into the grout. Regular cleaning and drying essentially adds layers of grime to your grout. Avoid cleaning your grout every day with regular household cleaners.

Damp areas are more prone to discolouration. 

Consistently wet areas like showers or outdoor spaces are ideal for mould and mildew growth. White or light shower grout is often quick to turn brown and yellow. Wet and warm areas open the pores in the grout, exposing them to dirt and priming the conditions for harmful mould growth. Some moulds and mildews can be extremely toxic if ingested, so be sure to deal with mould problems as soon as possible. 

How can I restore my grout’s colour?

Light-coloured grout may get dirty quickly, however there are a variety of cleaning options available to you. If you are looking for a DIY option, consider purchasing cleaners from a stone and grout manufacturer or distributor. These groups will be able to provide you with a quality cleaner that is made specifically for grout cleaning. Overscrubbing will cause the grout to wear down and crumble, so use a gentle brush and make sure your grout is thoroughly dry before the space is used again. Sealants can also be applied after cleaning to help block dirt and grime from penetrating deep into the grout. 

Seek professional assistance.

If you can’t seem to revert your grout back to its original colour, it may be time to call for some professional help! The StoneWiz team has years of experience with grout cleaning. This team offers specialised services including Grout Coating and Luxury Regrouting to inhibit dirt absorption and mould growth. If you need help transforming your discoloured grout, StoneWiz has an option to fit your needs and budget!

Understanding the main causes of discoloured grout is key to knowing how to prevent it. Grout is a sensitive, porous material, so it should be handled accordingly. Cleaning your grout every day may have adverse effects, so be gentle and use cleaning agents that are made specifically for grout. Address any mould or mildew issues in your grout immediately, since both are associated with harmful health repercussions. If you are struggling to maintain your grouts light and vibrant colour, contact StoneWiz for some professional grout assistance!