The long-term impacts of Ignoring Tile Cleaning

The long-term impacts of Ignoring Tile Cleaning

From kitchens to bathrooms, your floors are the catch-all surface for spills, accidents, and dirt-filled footsteps. While you may think that your favorite “quicker-picker-upper” and a few squirts of soap will do the trick, the long-term impacts of ignoring tile cleaning may catch up to you faster than you think. The risks are more than just cosmetic, neglecting to deep-clean your floor can lead to real health risks as well as damage to your home! But don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Here are some of the risks that you and your family might be exposed to right now:


I’m sure we can all begrudgingly look back on our highschool experience and remember biology, looking into the microscope to see hundreds of little organisms thrive and squirm in their moist, nasty environment. 

But how does this relate to your home?

Well, you have much bigger petri dishes hidden in plain sight—that’s right—your tile floors! In this very moment, your tiles, and especially grout, can be home to several different illness-causing bacteria such as:

These bad boys are the culprit for illnesses like strep-throat and symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and much more—I definitely would not like my kids crawling in that. These nasty germs get caught mainly in the grout in between your tiles, and in places like a humid bathroom, they flourish—just like in biology.

You might want to rethink that 5-second rule.

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Your floors and tile walls may also be the perfect canvas for mold to paint its pesky portrait. Looking back on why the bacteria flourishes, you’ll find that your bathrooms and dirty kitchen floors can be wrought with mold.

But don’t just take it from me! According to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, your tile floors might be the perfect dwelling for mold. They list three main conditions for growth:

  1. Oxygen
  2. Organic material for consumption

Again, your unclean tile floors, especially in your bathrooms, are excellent candidates for growing mold as it satisfies all three of these conditions.

You may be thinking to yourself, “out of sight, out of mind,” but this is anything but true. Just like the bacteria, several types of mold can grow on unclean tiles, such as:

While these names might not mean much to you, the last one might ring a bell by its colloquial name: BLACK MOLD. When these molds, and especially the black mold, are disturbed or otherwise disrupted, they release “spores” into the air, and when these are inhaled, it is bad news. Spore inhalation can cause symptoms such as:

Mold is no joke!


But what about the quality of your home itself? Don’t you want your family and visitors to enjoy the home you may work so hard to keep looking nice?

Well dirty tiles may be working against you in this area. When you lightly clean your tiles to make them look pleasant, you neglect all of the aforesaid risks of ignoring to really clean them, i.e., bacteria and mold. While these two culprits are big health risks, they can also be a real nuisance to your nose!

Like an armpit or smelly feet, the musky smell you cannot get rid of in your kitchen or bathroom may very well come from your tiles. As the bacteria and mold begin to multiply, so too will that funky smell.

But fear not!

“The grout medic” gives us good information on how to avoid this mess before it even starts. They argue that the following actions will help limit the uncleanliness of your tiles:

Pay extra attention to that last tip! Make sure to have someone come deep-clean your tiles and grout, as the long-term effects can get nasty.

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Did you know that, along with bacteria and mold, ignoring cleaning your tiles can also lead to DAMAGE?

That’s right, while your tiles are seemingly indestructible, they are also porous on a very, very small scale. This means that when dirt and grime build up over time, it can get beneath the top layer and cause permanent cosmetic, and structural, damage to your precious tiles.

Additionally, everyday, home-remedy cleaning supplies and techniques can ultimately end up harming your floors more than fixing them. Abrasive tools and chemicals can wear down the material and leave permanent damage and fading. So, when in doubt, ask a professional to help! There are plenty of services out there, just one google search away, to help you fix your long-term tile cleaning neglect! 


While all of these tips are very important, don’t be afraid. The chances you permanently damage your floors, or that you get gravely ill from touching them, are very slim. This article is just meant to provide an awareness of the possibilities of neglecting your home in this way. It is important to keep your floors as clean as possible, especially when you have small children who are very prone to making contact with them.

Nonetheless, when it comes to the potential of harming your property or your loved ones, don’t take the risk! It will be important to schedule, at least annually, cleanings for your floors. It can also be useful to follow some of the tips from “the grout medic,” as mentioned earlier! Remember, the long term impacts of ignoring tile cleaning can prove to be detrimental to the health of your home and the wellness of your friends and family.