shower head

Bathroom DIY

Over the next couple of months, the majority of us will be spending most, if not all of our time indoors at home. So, why not put this time to good use and try to tackle some of the bathroom DIY jobs you’ve been putting off for years?

In this article we focus on bathroom maintenance and cleaning. We’ll also look at the small changes that will make a big impact on the look and feel of your family bathroom, en suite or downstairs loo.

Re grout tiles

Bathrooms are subject to changing temperatures, steam and water, which can cause grout to discolour and crack over time. Damaged grout not only looks unsightly, but it can have a detrimental effect on its protective properties. If the grout is in need of repair, moisture can get behind the tiles and damage the adhesive, causing tiles to fall off. It can also allow water to penetrate the wall, which will affect its structural integrity.

To repair small areas of damaged grout, you should slowly and carefully scrape away effected areas using a grout rake and a chisel. Make sure you protect surrounding areas from scratches using masking tape. Then spread on the new grout, being sure to wipe away any excess with a damp cloth.

grout

Reseal bathroom furniture

It’s also important to ensure bathroom furniture such as baths, shower trays, sinks and toilets are properly sealed to prevent unnecessary water damage or leaks. If your existing sealant is mouldy or starting to peel away, remove the affected areas with a sealant removal tool. Failing that a Stanley knife and a flat head screwdriver will help. Then carefully apply some methylated spirits.

New mould-resistant silicone is easy to apply using a caulking gun and available in a range of colours. Always try to apply the sealant as close to the bath or shower tray as possible and smooth down the sealant with a wet finger to ensure it is water tight and fills all the gaps.

Repair/replace broken tiles 

If you have a broken or chipped tile that’s been bothering you for ages, why not take this opportunity to replace it. It may seem daunting, but it’s a relatively easy task for someone who’s proficient at DIY. If you’re confident, mask the surrounding tiles and remove the surrounding grout. Drill pilot holes in the middle of the tiles, being careful not to damage the wall behind and use a chisel to remove any small pieces working from the inside out.

broken tiles

Up-cycle bathroom furniture

Give wooden bathroom furniture a new lease of life with a lick of Annie Sloan chalk paint. Choose a bright colour for a bold design statement or pick neutral colours such as grey, white or cream for a modern look. This popular paint is an easy way to transform an existing space, without the need for time consuming preparation or sealing. Better still, up-cycling furniture is good for the environment and your bank balance!

Replace fittings

Replacing existing fixtures and fittings with new taps, towel rails and shower head is an easy way to give your bathroom a fresh new look and feel. You could switch up your style, and swap traditional for modern or try a new colour or finish. 

Deep clean

Mould and limescale can be a problem in bathrooms, due to constant heat and moisture. Even with regular cleaning, it’s easy to overlook hard to reach areas and a quick once over with a multipurpose cleaner isn’t enough for stubborn stains. Specially designed cleaning formulas, such as Mouldex or Multiclean can help you achieve professional results.

Use this increased time indoors to give your bathroom a deep clean, prioritising the areas in need of some TLC. Grout lines and sealant are often an area of concern, suffering from discolouration and mildew spots. There are a number of cleaning agents available that can help bring grout back to its former glory. We recommend LTP Grimex if you’re looking to remove grime.

In hard water areas, taps and shower heads may be affected by limescale. If possible, remove these fittings and soak them in a bath of water and high concentration lemon juice or white vinegar. If you cannot remove the fittings completely, soak a cloth with the mixture and tightly wrap it around the fittings overnight.

shower head

Protect tiles

Once you’ve thoroughly cleaned your bathroom tiles, why not go the extra mile and protect them against future staining. For areas tiled with natural stone or unglazed vitrified ceramics such as Victorian floor tiles, it’s important to apply a fresh coat of sealer to protect them from absorbing stains and moisture. LTP Colour Intensifier and Mattstone are suitable for most natural stones and will provide a long lasting seal.

For the grout,  use special grout protector products that can be applied as a top coat to protect grout from water, dirt or oil.