Renter Life
Apartment List Blog
Renter Life
Concierge Icon
Start Your Apartment Search
How many bedrooms do you need?
1 bed
2 bed
3+ bed
Concierge Icon
Start Your Apartment Search
How many bedrooms do you need?
1 bed
2 bed
3+ bed
Share this Article

How to Clean a Bathroom in 13 Easy Steps

By: Susan Finch
March 31, 2020

Shut the bathroom door, and it’s easy to forget about unsightly grime, mold, and mildew. However, bathroom germs and bacteria are everywhere. They include enteric pathogens, gastrointestinal viruses, fungi, and all the things you never want to think about again.

Ready to learn how to clean a bathroom? It's time to throw open the windows, air out the bathroom, and get to work with a serious scrubbing.

How to Clean a Bathroom: Supplies You'll Need

  • Sponges and scrubbers
  • Paper towels or rags
  • Trash bags
  • Mop
  • Grout cleaner
  • Toilet brush and toilet bowl cleaner
  • Toilet bowl drop-in cleaner tablets
  • Air freshener

If you want to give your home a top-to-bottom cleaning, try using our household cleaning checklist in addition to these tips.

How Often Should You Clean a Bathroom?

Tackling how to clean your bathroom also requires a schedule. Most areas like your shower and sink need a once-a-week cleaning. 

However, you should wipe down a toilet that multiple people use every few days or more. Make a cleaning schedule with your roommate and switch off as needed. 

Make throwing out bathroom supplies and must-haves part of your cleaning routine, as well. Here’s how often you should replace bathroom essentials like shower curtains and bath mats. 

13 Steps to Cleaning Your Bathroom

1. Scrub the Shower

Love shower gels, fancy soaps, and shaving products lining your shower shelves? Remove all objects in the shower to reach all the surfaces. 

Use a mildew-fighting shower spray. Then, start scrubbing at mold, grime, and soap scum. 

Is your shower curtain full of mold and mildew? If you can’t scrub it clean, throw it out and get a fresh one every few months. 

2. Clean the Walls

Tiles and grout attract bathroom mold with unsightly black spots. Your bathroom cleaner with a mildew fighter can help. 

Or, you can try one part bleach and two parts water. Then, scrub it into your tile and let it sit for 30 minutes. 

Skip the bleach solution if you have colored grout in your bathroom that could fade. Instead, scrub with a mold and mildew-fighting bathroom cleaner. Touch up cracked, faded, or damaged grout. 

3. Clean the Ceiling

Remove cobwebs and anything else lingering in the corners of your ceiling. Carefully clean black mold with 1/4 cup of white vinegar, two cups of hot water, and two or three tablespoons of borax. Be careful not to get the solution in your eyes. 

You should report stubborn black mold to your landlord to avoid its spread and health problems. Black mold can cause breathing and respiratory problems for you, your roommates, and your guests. 

4. Mop or Swiffer the Floor

Grab your mop or Swiffer and attack your floors with a vengeance. Scrub the corners, look for mold, and throw your bath mat into the washing machine. Wipe down your baseboards and look for anything you missed.

Take a moment to note any holes or damage around your baseboards. Household pests could use them as an entryway and spread to the rest of your apartment. Report them to your landlord to get on top of the problem quickly.

5. Clean the Sink and Vanity Area

Bacteria and grime can build up in your bathroom sink and create a health hazard. Give your sink a good scrubbing with a sponge to avoid scratching a porcelain or delicate surface. 

Use a bathroom cleaner to wipe down the rest of the vanity. Wipe out all drawers and cabinets around your sink.

What’s going on above your sink? Wipe down your mirror and pay attention to the edges.

6. Clean the Toilet

It’s that moment you’ve been dreading! Get to work disinfecting your toilet with a toilet brush and toilet bowl cleaner. Work on all of the parts you hope you never have to touch again. 

Add a drop-in toilet bowl cleaner once it’s clean. Only use an appropriate cleaner. Avoid flushing bleach or other chemicals down the toilet. 

Clean all areas of your toilet, including the top, bottom, and the outside of the bowl. You can always wear gloves if this job grosses you out. 

7. Wash All Bath and Hand Towels

Gather up your bath towels and hand towels and throw them in the washing machine. Give them a thorough washing and heat dry if possible to kill off germs. 

Got old towels with holes or other damage? Consider donating old towels or throwing them out and starting anew. 

8. Dust Surfaces and Sweep or Vacuum the Floors

Bathrooms collect a surprising amount of dust. Dust your linen closet shelves, drawers, or other surfaces. 

Sweep and vacuum carpeted bathrooms. Use a carpet cleaning product to touch up any stains or problem spots.

9. Wash the Windows

Grab some glass cleaner and work on washing down your windows. Use a streak-free cleaner for the best results. Wipe dust and grime from the window sills and frames.

10. Disinfect the Door Knobs 

Ever wonder what’s growing on your door knobs? Disinfect them with an appropriate cleaner. You can use a solution of vinegar and water to help remove germs.

11. Throw Out Old Medicine 

What’s hanging out in your medicine cabinet? You should throw old, expired medicine out. You can usually toss over-the-counter medication out in a Ziploc bag. 

Prescription medication needs a safe disposal method. Check the Diversion Control Division website to find a safe way to dispose of controlled substances.

12. Take Out the Bathroom Trash 

Gather up your bathroom trash and dispose of it. Clean out your bathroom trash can or replace it with a new can. Add a clean trash bag that’s built for spills. 

Add a can for recycling if you toss numerous shampoo bottles and other products regularly.

13. Deodorize with Bathroom Spray

You’re almost done! Deodorize your sparkling clean bathroom with household eliminator spray. Keep the door and windows open for a while to help circulate the scent and any residual cleaning smell.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations on conquering how to clean a bathroom! Make a thorough scrubbing a regular event. And don’t be embarrassed if your squeaky clean bathroom is now your favorite room in the house. We won't tell.

Share this Article

Susan Finch is a freelance writer and content manager focusing on local experiences, travel, and anything relating to really good food and craft brews. Her work has appeared in travel guidebooks and national magazines and newspapers. Read More
Subscribe to our Newsletter
Stay up to date on the latest apartment hunting tips.
Next Up
10 Germiest Things in Your Kitchen You (Probably) Forget to Clean
Everything You Should Disinfect in Your Apartment
24 Productive Things To Do During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Apartments for Rent in Our Top Cities

Atlanta, GA Apartments
Your browser is no longer supported. Not all features may work as intended.