Monday, February 23, 2009

TV and Tiles

By Sam Weyland

With the advent of the TV came various home care products that were advertised using that medium. The hardships of grout cleaning have lasted just as long, and there was a natural abundance of these commercials as well. Ask some of your older relatives, and they might remember how these advertisements typically had housewives as the target audience. They played up on how they hated spending too much time on grout cleaning, which worked during those times.

There have been a large number of changes in our culture since then. Today, American women, empowered by the ability to earn alongside our husbands, are seldom thrust into the role of a pure housewife. As such, the archetype is not as commonly employed by television advertisements these days. Instead, they have an unspecified persona (or a housekeeper) acting as the cleaner of the house.

And yet, the dilemna known as grout cleaning remains as a very real problem in today's household. The tiles themselves are trivial, if not easy, to clean, but the grout's very composition absorbs grime and dirt into it, far from the reach of a mop. In addition, you can't just decide to refrain from cleaning the grout. They have been known to host bacteria, or even black mold if moist.

So, as you can imagine, grout cleaning continues to attract a lot of attention, from special formulas out on the market to machinery specifically built to clean it. I advise caution with these things.

There are a multitude of grout-cleaning formulae out there, from homemade stuff to the most aggressively marketed and expensive "scientific breakthroughs". If going for these, I suggest going for the simpler ones. They're simply cheaper and can be just as effective. Although be careful; some just plain don't work. Do some research to find out the right formula for you.

Finally, I would advise against going for the more expensive heavy equipment. They are simply too difficult to handle; and misuse could easily lead to completely destroyed tiles. Instead, why not just hire a professional to do it for you? They know how to handle these heavy equipment best. - 16651

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