How to Make Your Glass Shower Doors Sparkle

Restore clarity and shine in no time with this DIY cleaning solution.

Glass shower doors and walls are stylish, practical, and showcase beautiful tile work. But, after every shower, water droplets, shower products, and body soil cling to the surface. And, if the doors aren't sparkling, your bathroom isn't really clean. Cleaning glass shower doors is pretty simple if you are diligent about removing the splatters after every shower. If you aren't diligent, soap scum created by the minerals in the water, soap, and body soil can permanently etch the glass, leaving a foggy mess.

While there are countless commercial glass cleaning products, you can create your own with just a few items from your pantry. The trick is using them regularly! Follow these steps to clean glass shower doors and keep them sparkling.

How Often to Clean Glass Shower Doors

To keep glass shower doors shining, they should be cleaned after every use. Just a quick spray with a commercial or DIY cleaner that is removed with a squeegee keeps soap scum from becoming a big problem (or skip the cleanser and just squeegee the surface). If you can't manage that, the doors should, at least, be cleaned weekly.

What You'll Need:

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Distilled water
  • Lemon juice
  • Lint-free towels
  • Spray bottle
  • Squeegee
  • Non-sudsing ammonia
  • Baking soda
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Paper towel
  • Old washcloth
  • Sponge
  • Toothbrush
  • Glass bowl

How to Clean Shower Doors With Vinegar

Distilled white vinegar contains acetic acid that will cut through soap scum; however, the acid can damage unsealed natural stone. Do not use this method on stone shower surrounds.

  1. Mix a cleaning solution: For daily or weekly cleaning, mix two parts distilled white vinegar with two parts distilled water in a spray bottle. Add one-fourth teaspoon dishwashing liquid to help the solution cling to the glass.
  2. Spray the glass: Starting at the top of the glass door or walls, liberally spray the solution onto the glass. Let the solution work for at least five minutes to begin breaking down the soap scum. If you use this solution after every shower while the glass is wet, there is no need to wait.
  3. Wipe away the solution: Starting at the top, use a non-abrasive sponge or squeegee to wipe down the glass. If the vinegar solution has dried, add a bit more.
  4. Rinse and dry: If using a sponge for cleaning, rinse the glass and dry with a lint-free towel. If you are cleaning with a squeegee, use the towel to remove any smudges or smears.

How to Clean Shower Doors With Lemon Juice

Lemon juice contains citric acid that is not as strong as the acetic acid in vinegar and should be used only for daily cleaning. Even though it is milder, it should not be used around natural stone showers.

  1. Mix a solution: For daily cleaning, mix equal parts lemon juice and distilled water with one-fourth teaspoon dishwashing liquid in a spray bottle.
  2. Spray and wipe: Start at the top of the glass and spray the surface with the solution. Let it work for about five minutes and then wipe the glass with a sponge or squeegee.
  3. Rinse and dry: Rinse away any solution, or if you use a squeegee, rinsing may not be necessary. Use a microfiber towel to dry the glass and remove streaks and smudges.

How to Remove Stubborn Water Stains

If you haven't been cleaning regularly, the soap scum or water spotting from minerals can be tough to remove. Clean the doors using vinegar or lemon juice and then tackle the water stains with some gentle abrasives or stronger cleaning products. If one method doesn't work, move to the next one.

  1. Clean with lemon: Dip the cut half of a lemon in baking soda and gently scrub the stained areas of the glass. Rinse well, and dry with a lint-free cloth.
  2. Clean with vinegar: Heat undiluted distilled white vinegar in a microwaveable bowl until very warm but not boiling. Add one-fourth teaspoon dishwashing liquid. Pour the heated vinegar into a spray bottle or use a sponge to apply it to the glass. Allow the vinegar to work for five or 10 minutes. Dip a sponge in dry baking soda and gently scrub any stained areas. There will be some fizzing but it will quickly dissipate. Rinse well and dry the glass with a lint-free cloth.
  3. Use household ammonia: Ammonia is a common ingredient in commercial shower cleaners. It has a very strong odor and should not be combined with any other cleaning product, but it is effective on water stains. Open a window and be sure to have ventilation. In a spray bottle, add one tablespoon of non-sudsing household ammonia to one quart of warm distilled water. Spray the water stains and wait five minutes. Scrub the area with a non-abrasive sponge, rinse, and dry with a microfiber cloth.

How to Clean Shower Door Tracks

Shower door tracks catch all of the soap scum and dirt that slides down the glass. Be sure to clean them each time you do a deep clean of the glass shower doors.

  1. Plug the drain hole: Locate the drainage hole or slit in the track and plug it with an old washcloth or paper towel.
  2. Fill the track with vinegar: Pour undiluted distilled white vinegar into the track and allow it to work for at least four hours or overnight.
  3. Scrub the track: Once the vinegar has been allowed to break down the soap scum, unplug the drainage holes. Use a toothbrush to scrub away the soap scum and dirt.
  4. Rinse and dry: Rinse the area well with distilled water. Scrub again, if needed, with a toothbrush dipped in vinegar. Rinse and dry with a microfiber towel.

Tips to Maintain Clean Glass Shower Doors

  • Squeegee or dry glass shower doors and walls with a lint-free towel after every use, even if you don't use a cleaner.
  • Mix a cleaning solution and keep it in the shower for daily use.
  • If you live in an area with hard water, add a water softening system to your home.
  • To reduce soap scum, switch to liquid body wash. It is less likely than bar soap to react with minerals in water and create water stains.

READ NEXT: How to Clean a Shower Drain (and Prevent It From Smelling)

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