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Hard water stains can be a real blight on your bathroom so you are probabaly wondering will steam cleaning remove hard water stains.
A quick walk down any cleaning aisle will present you with a wide selection of cleaning chemicals to remove such unsightly material build up. But you might well be thinking is there some other way, something that doesn’t use chemicals but will return the sparkle to my home.
Luckily, the answer is yes, steam cleaning will remove hard water stains. A bonus is that steam cleaning will also kill any bacteria that might be present within the stains.
However, if the stains are still forming and not too thick, you can rely entirely on the steam cleaner alone to achieve a perfect clean. If they are thicker, you may need to add some scrubbing to the job, but the steam cleaner will make this easier.
What are hard water stains
Known by many names, limescale, mineral deposits, and mineral build-up, whatever you call it, they are a pain to remove. They are created over time by regular use of taps and often cannot be avoided, only removed after they appear.
Hard water is the term for water that contains a high amount of minerals. Most of the water that comes from taps in your home is considered “hard water.” The most common minerals found in water are calcium, magnesium, and iron. Do not be alarmed to hear that most tap water contains these hidden additions.
Hard water stains happen because water containing these minerals lingers on surfaces. Most water does go down the drain, however, any droplets that remain can become unsightly stains. And they will not shift with regular cleaning, requiring special intervention to deal with.
Scientists have been conducting rigorous studies for years and confirmed many times over that hard water is completely safe to drink. In fact, most studies conclude that hard water is healthier than soft water because calcium, magnesium, and iron are crucial for the human body. The more you can get, the better.
Hard water may be great for you, but the stains it leaves behind are a problem. They are not only ugly, but they can also contain bacteria that breed within them. These bacteria can be very harmful to you and your family. The stains are formed when the water comes out of your taps and lingers on surfaces.
Most commonly you will see them around the edges of taps and faucets, and in the sink, shower, and bathtub drains. They form slowly over time and if not removed, become gradually thicker over time. Some portions of ancient Roman aqueducts have calcium deposits over eight inches thick after hundreds of years of use.
Cleaning hard water stains
Removing hard water stains can be difficult, as they tend to build up slowly over time and tend to be tougher to shift the longer that they have been there. The best advice is to try cleaning them as soon as you see them to make the job easier. But that might not always be possible, for example, if you have moved into a home that has existing hard water stains and wish to clean them.
Chemical cleaning of hard water stains
One of the most common methods of removing hard water stains is using chemicals. Hydrogen peroxide, also known as bleach, has often been considered the tried and tested choice for cleaning bathrooms, as it will remove hard water stains. Stores are also filled with concoctions that claim to be able to shift stubborn calcium deposits, however, results are likely to vary.
The problem with using chemicals for cleaning is they can be dangerous. Some are corrosive, and bleach has strong fumes that can trigger asthma and other breathing difficulties. They are also heavily polluting and contaminate waterways.
Non-chemical steam cleaning of hard water stains
Many people are not fond of using strong chemicals for cleaning and instead opt for other methods. One of the more popular ways of removing hard water stains is by combining baking soda and white vinegar to create a paste. This paste is spread over the affected surface and left for a short period of time before being wiped away. While this is safer than using strong chemicals, it is still messy and time-consuming.
Conclusion – Will a steam cleaner remove hard water stains?
Steam cleaning is by far the most effective method of removing hard water stains. It is safe, effective, and will not cause any pollution to waterways. All you need to do is aim the steam cleaner at the affected area and move it slowly around as you use it. You will see the stains start to melt and fall away.
After that, all you need is to gently wipe the excess away with a cloth and you are done! Even stubborn hard water stains can be moved using this method, you just may need to hold the steam cleaner over the area longer and scrub a little harder with the cloth afterward.
Steam cleaning also inhibits mold growth and kills bacteria, which is something many other cleaning methods fall short on.
If you aren’t sure which steam cleaner might be appropriate to use, then be sure to check out our article on the best steam cleaner for bathroom and shower
Will Steam Cleaning Remove Hard Water Stains Frequently Asked Questions
Is it safe to put bleach in a steam cleaner?
For those who are wondering if it is a good idea to combine harsh chemicals with steam cleaning, it is not. It is not safe to put bleach into a steam cleaner. This can damage the cleaner and will create harmful toxic fumes.
Can you put chemicals in a steam cleaner?
You should never put chemicals into your steam cleaner. Steam cleaners are designed to be used with water only and adding chemicals can badly damage your cleaner.
Can you steam clean glass shower doors?
Yes, you absolutely can steam clean glass shower doors! And your bathroom mirror too! Steam cleaning glass is totally safe and very effective.
Can steam remove stains?
Steam is amazing at removing stains. The heat, moisture, and high pressure helps to break down and loosen dirt, grime, oils, and anything that is causing your stain. The stain then either vanishes before your eyes or becomes easier to remove with a bit of wiping.
Can steam remove calcium deposits?
Yes! Calcium deposits are merely another name for hard water stains. Steam cleaning is a brilliant method for removing these.