How Do You Get Bathmat Stains Out Of The Bathtub?

Kathryn Flegal
by Kathryn Flegal
Have you ever lifted a bathmat out of your tub to find a rectangular area of gross brown stains underneath? If so, you’re not alone. A lot of people don’t

Have you ever lifted a bathmat out of your tub to find a rectangular area of gross brown stains underneath? If so, you’re not alone.

A lot of people don’t realize that you should take the bathmat out of the tub after each use. Or they do know, happen to forget a few times, and discover the brown spots when they remember. The bathmat needs to dry to prevent mold and grime from building up underneath.

To get bath mat stains out of your bathtub, apply baking soda and lemon juice to the spots, and scrub it with a hard-bristle brush or toothbrush. If that doesn’t work, mix the baking soda with hydrogen peroxide instead. Also, bleach and vinegar are ways you can kill the mold as well.

We’ll discuss these methods in detail in this article, along with other helpful tips and tricks for cleaning your tub.

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Can Certain Kinds of Cleaner Harm My Bathtub?

Bathmat stains can be tricky to remove because the spots are compacted into the surface with each use. But you also need to be conscious of what you’re using to clean, to preserve the surface of your bathtub. This will depend on the type of bathtub you have.

Each different type of bathtub material has certain guidelines as to what should or shouldn’t be used to clean them. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

Porcelain Bathtubs

  • The most durable kind of tub
  • Abrasive powders are fine to use
  • You can use a pumice stone to scrub tough stains

Enamel Bathtubs

  • This is a common material for older tubs
  • Use any standard bathtub cleaner – just make sure it doesn’t contain bleach
  • Tri-Sodium Phosphate should only be used sparingly for tough stains. Do not combine with other cleaners

Acrylic Bathtubs

  • These resemble plastic and are a more sensitive material
  • Do not use abrasive cleaners or substances such as pumice stones
  • Dish soap, vinegar, and soft cleaners are good cleaning agents for acrylic tubs

How to Get Bathmat Stains Out of a Bathtub

These stubborn stains respond well to pastes that penetrate the stain without pushing the grime further into the surface. There are a few different ways to do this.

Baking Soda & Lemon Juice Method

Step 1: Mix 1 cup of baking soda with 1 cup of lemon juice into a bowl. Stir the mixture until it forms a paste.

Step 2: Using a clean sponge or cloth to get it out of the bowl, apply the mixture to the stains. Rub it all over the surface of the stains.

Step 3: Let the paste sit for 20-30 minutes.

Step 4: Use a spray bottle filled with vinegar to spray the paste. The baking soda will fizzle and bubble – this is normal.

Step 5: If your tub is porcelain, you can scrub the stains with a pumice stone. If not, use a scrub brush with softer bristles.

Step 6: Rinse the cleaning products with hot water. If stains are still present, you can repeat the process or try another method.

Hydrogen Peroxide Method

Step 1: This time make a paste using a 1:2 ratio of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda.

Step 2: Use a cloth to rub the mixture into the stains.

Step 3: Let the paste sit for up to 1 hour.

Step 4: Rinse the paste off with warm water and assess. For stubborn spots, repeat the process until the stain is gone.

Note: this mixture can be used to clean any stubborn stain in the bathroom. Kill mold by spraying hydrogen peroxide directly onto the area.

How Can I Clean My Rubber Bathmat?

Chances are, if the bottom of the tub under the bathmat is dirty, the mat will be too. It may seem daunting when there is dirt and grime stuck to every circular suction cup on the bottom. But before you chuck the mat, try one of these methods to clean it:

Bleach Soak Method

Step 1: Lift the mat from the surface of the tub and replace it gently, so that it’s not suctioned.

Step 2: Wear rubber gloves and ventilate the room.

Step 3: Add cold water to the tub first, then pour bleach into the water. You may use up to 1 cup per each gallon of water.

Step 4: Leave the mat to soak in the bleachy water. If mold or mildew is present, let the mat soak for a couple of hours. For less serious stains, just a few minutes will suffice.

Step 5: Rinse the bleach from the bathmat to avoid having bleach dripping on your floor. Hang the mat up to dry, then drain and rinse the tub.

Washing Machine Method

Step 1: Simply stick your bathmat into the washer and add some bleach.

Step 2: For a more thorough cleaning, also add some towels that can be bleached as well. The towels will help scrub the bathmat.

Step 3: Hang the mat up to dry, or hand dry. Do not put the mat into the dryer, as the heat could melt it.

Helpful Hints

Here are some important tips to keep in mind when cleaning your tub:

  • When dealing with mold, make sure the bathroom is very well-ventilated. Run the exhaust fan and open a window if there is one. Also, wear rubber gloves and a face mask if possible. This rule also applies when cleaning with bleach.
  • When using vinegar to kill mold, do not dilute it with water. Mold can be volatile and needs a strong solution to wipe it out and prevent regrowth.
  • When using bleach, never pour it directly into the tub. Bleach can discolor the surface if applied directly.
  • Avoid using steel wool or abrasive brushes on your tub, since they could damage the surface.
  • Use caution when mixing cleaning products. For example, chlorine bleach and ammonia should never be combined. These can cause toxic fumes and chemical burns to your skin when mixed.
  • Be sure to thoroughly rinse the area you’re cleaning to remove all cleaning product residue.

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Related Questions

How can I prevent bathtub stains?

To prevent stains from forming underneath the mat, remove the mat after each shower or bath. Hang it up to dry over the bar of the shower. Also, be sure to keep your bathroom well-ventilated. Run the exhaust fan during each shower or bath, and for at least an hour afterward. Additionally, you can soak the mat in vinegar at least once per month and hang to dry to prevent mold.

How often should I replace my bathmat?

Bathmats should be replaced at least every 2 years. While they get a lot of use in the bathroom, they are usually durable. Cleaning it regularly gives your bathmat a better chance of lasting longer. If your bathroom is particularly humid, or if you have many family members using the same bathroom to bathe, you should clean it more often.

Which non-toxic cleaners remove mold from the tub floor?

There are several non-toxic products that will kill the mold that builds up under bathmats. Hydrogen peroxide is a great option for mold removal since it’s also antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial. White vinegar is also a safe choice. While it isn’t 100% percent effective (it can kill 82% of mold species), it’s more than likely to solve your problem. Other options include baking soda and lemon juice.

Kathryn Flegal
Kathryn Flegal

Kathryn is a craft aficionado who loves writing about DIY home improvement projects. When she's not writing, she loves reading, listening to musicals, and playing with her kids.

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