Best method for cleaning scale from tile

skinnydipper

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 2, 2007
88
Riverside, CA
#1
I've tried vinegar and a scrub brush but it's not working. I've been told muriatic acid, but how do you do this? How should I apply it and what kind of face protection would I need? Will it mess up the tile? Should it be diluted?
 

giulietta1

In The Industry
Mar 29, 2007
289
Knippa, Texas
#2
Re: Best mothod for cleaning scale from tile

skinnydipper said:
I've tried vinegar and a scrub brush but it's not working. I've been told muriatic acid, but how do you do this? How should I apply it and what kind of face protection would I need? Will it mess up the tile? Should it be diluted?
I noticed no one had replied, so I thought I'd chime in. . . there's such a thing as pool tile cleaner that you can get from pool stores. I don't think acid would be good for the tile; ok for plaster, tho it does take off the outer layer.

I saw a recent recommendation here for pool tile cleaner, but I don't think a specific brand was mentioned.
 
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skinnydipper

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 2, 2007
88
Riverside, CA
#4
duraleigh said:
Thanks Duraleigh! This is very helpful.

What I'm concerned with specifically is my tile/grout. It has an ugly ring around the pool at the normal water line. I have let it evaporate away quite a bit so I had room to work, it's just going sooooo slow with the vinegar/scrub brush. Not to mention, I smell like italian dressing when I give up and get out! :?

Is tile a lot more delicate than the plaster? I'm afraid of ruining it, that could be quite costly.
 

duraleigh

Admin
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In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
31,395
Sebring, Florida
#5
I'm pretty sure your tile is bulletproof. It's most likely porcelain and will resist just about anything that would try to stain or etch it. Acid (stronger than vinegar....say about 1:5 muriatic) SHOULD be fine on the tile. Actually, done with care, it should be fine on the grout as well.....just apply it in a small spot so if you see it harming the grout you can stop. (It'll have a tendency to lighten your grout a little but, again, done carefully, it is an excellent scale remover.

If you apply the acid/water mixture and it doesn't foam, it's not strong enough. If it foams violently for a minuite or so....Oops! too much. Throw some pool water on it.

First, I would suggest cleaning that line with something just a little soapy (Ajax or comet in small amounts would be fine) to remove any organic scum. I would then suggest mixing 1:5 (muriatic to water) to start and, in the pool with rubber gloves, begin to apply the solution to the scale line. I think you'll be impressed with the results.

Like anything else, a big dose of common sense goes a long way when handling acid.

Well, the Italian dressing analogy has whetted my appetite. Time for the house (my house) salad! :lol: :lol: