How to Clean an Acrylic Tub or Shower
Keeping an Acrylic Bathroom Fixture Clean is a Breeze - Once You Know the Secret
I always said that I'd never go with an acrylic bathtub. I was the type who loved to dive right in with the Ajax or Comet and get rid of that soap scum. An acrylic tub would never stand up to that. The finish would never last!
Well, I've since changed my tune - in more ways than one. Wanting to clean with fewer chemicals and keep my family healthy but maintain a nice bathroom finish I searched for the answer.
It turned out that going from an Enamel or Porcelain finish to an Acrylic one was an easy switch. Acrylic is very smooth - so nothing sticks to it! (If you keep it clean and smooth.)
Recently we installed a brand new acrylic tub surround in our bathroom. Upon researching how to keep acrylic clean without damaging the finish, I was surprised to find so many complicated answers. The two I finally settled on proved to be fantastic. Not only are these cleaning methods easy to do, they require inexpensive cleaning products.
First and foremost - use ONLY dish soap to clean. Dish soap will cut through soap scum and leave your tub or shower shiny but more importantly it won't ruin your finish. If you wish to use an all natural detergent that's fine too, however, these usually don't produce the same amount of bubbles when you clean. I've tried several and have only liked one of them - and I now use it daily (in the kitchen as well as the bathroom). Just pour a bit in the bottom of the tub, scrub and rinse. It's that easy. You can also run a dry towel over the tub and shower surround when you're finished cleaning the acrylic finish - this removes any water marks and leaves your tub sparkling.
Secondly - if you live in an area with hard water - use vinegar. Fill a spray bottle with a mixture of 50% vinegar and 50% water. Use this once a week to remove hard water residue. I usually spray the surface, let sit for a few minutes and then rub off. I follow with dish soap to remove all of the vinegar. The vinegar will not hurt your finish, will remove the hard water build up, and leaves your bathing area nice and fresh - all without harmful chemicals. The smoother you keep your finish the easier it will be to clean the next time.
Finally, there are a few other tips for keeping your new acrylic tub or shower clean and shiny. Don't let your soap scum build up for weeks on end. This only makes the surface harder to clean. Once a week is recommended. More often is preferred - if you have time. If you live in an area with hard water, using your towel after you're finished bathing to wipe down your tub or shower will help keep it clean until your next scrubbing - and remove the hard water which would otherwise leave deposits on your walls. This is especially important for the soap holders and shelves in the newer units - as they become coated with hard water residue. Finally, never use a cleaner with acetone in it. This will ruin your acrylic finish.
Good luck! Enjoy your acrylic bathroom fixture!