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How to Lighten Grout That Is Too Dark [3 Super Simple Methods]

Darker grout can be quite a hassle. It gives an impression that your floor is dirty even when it’s not. But it’s possible to revert the grout color to as good as new.

Wondering about how to lighten grout that is too dark?

Try using white vinegar to lighten the grout. It can pull off the dark stain over the grout line. You can also use bleach to remove the dark marks. Apply the bleach solution and scrub the dirt off. Using grout colorant can also guarantee good results.

This isn’t enough info. But we’ve mentioned everything you should know about the lightning your grout. 

Let’s dive right in right away!

How To Lighten Dark Grout Easily?

Before getting to the solutions, you should know the reason behind the dark grout. Well, the main culprits are dirt, mold, and mildew. All of this makes your precious grout darker. But whatever the reason is, the solution is the same for all.

There are mostly two options when it comes to lightening the dark grout. You can firstly consider removing the grout and replacing it with a new coat. 

Worried about the difficulty level of this option? Don’t worry! 

It’s not as hard as caulking between tiles. But it’s still a really time-consuming process and will cost a lot. 

Another option is processing the existing grout to make it lighter. It’ll take less time than removing and redoing the grout. It’s also budget-friendly. Because you won’t need any professional help to do this.

That’s why we’ve prioritized the second option here. We’ve presented some simple methods to lighten your grout easily. Hopefully, this comes to your help.

Method-1: Using Vinegar To lighten Dark Grout

Vinegar is a lifesaver when it comes to cleaning. It can save you from common household problems like removing vomit stench from the couch

Lightning dark grout is also one of them. But you need to know if you can apply vinegar on your tiles. Otherwise, it can do more harm than good.

The chart below will help you on this-

Aspects Name of Tiles
Vinegar-safe Ceramic tiles, synthetic tiles, porcelain tiles.
Not Vinegar-safe Marble tiles, travertine, limestone, terracotta, granite.

Now that you know which tile you can apply it on, let’s get these tools-

  • Eye goggles
  • ¾ of spray bottle undiluted white vinegar
  • Old toothbrush

If you’ve gathered these, let’s start the work!

Step-1: Apply Vinegar

Put on the goggles as vinegar can give a burning sensation to the eyes. Spray the vinegar on the dark grout line. Let it soak in the grout for 5-10 minutes.

Step-2: Brush Off The Dirt

Use the toothbrush to scrub off the stain from the grout. After scrubbing the area, rinse the floor and dry it with a towel. 

Repeat the process over the stained grout areas. Pay more effort to the even darker grout lines. Make sure you clean the area properly to get rid of the vinegar stench. 

Hopefully, you’ve got a good result!

Method-2: Using Bleach To Whiten The Grout

Bleach is safer to use on most surfaces. But if your grout is colorful, it’s best not to use any bleaching product. Because using bleach on dyed grout can change its original color.

If your grout isn’t colored and bleach-safe you move forward!. To complete this process here are things you are gonna need-

  • 5 tbsp of chlorine bleach
  • 2-gallon bucket water
  • Scrub brush
  • gloves
  • Cloth to mop the floor
  • Old toothbrush 

You can either use chlorine bleach or oxygen bleach for this method. But chlorine bleach works better on removing colors. 

Do you’ve all you need? Then let’s whiten the grout.

Step-1: Ready The Bleach Solution

Wear your protective gloves. Then use 5 tbsp (⅓ cup) of chlorine bleach to a gallon of steaming hot water. 

Stir the mixture well. Remember to keep the windows open so the bleach fumes can’t harm you. 

Step-2: Apply The Bleach Solution

Dip the brush into the solution and apply it to the darkened grouts. Give about 5 minutes to properly saturate the area. 

Dip the brush in the solution every 20-30 seconds and scrub the darker color away. Once done, let the bleach soak on the grout for 5-10 minutes.

Step-3: Rinse The Area

Wipe the area with a dry towel or a sponge. Make sure there’s no bleach left. Use lukewarm water to completely rinse the grout. After cleaning, dry the areas.

For the grout lines that are still dark, apply more solutions to them. Scrub them lightly again and then rinse off. 

Hopefully, this gets the darkened grout stains off.

Method-3: Using Grout Colorant

Using grout colorant is a popular method to lighten the grout color. All you need is a bottle of grout colorant and a small brush.

Don’t know where to find the grout colorant? Don’t worry! We can help you. These are some good-quality grout colorants to use-

Product 1
Product 2

Hopefully, you’ve got the product.

Step-1: Take Preparations

Once you’ve your grout colorant, pick an appropriate paintbrush to apply. If the grout line is wider you can use an old toothbrush. If it’s a thin line, try using small paint brushes. Also, make sure the floor is clean.

Step-2: Apply the colorant

Apply the colorant over the grout with the brush. Try not to smudge it over the tile. But in case you do, worry not. 

The colorants are removable. Just mop the excess part with a rug. Be careful not to wipe off the colorant on the grout.

Step-3: Let The Colorant Dry

The colorant normally takes about 30- 45 minutes depending on the product. Read the user manual to know how long it takes for your colorant to dry. 

By the way, these colorants are also reusable. If you recently fixed any gap between tile and wall, it might come in handy too. 

That was all about lightening darker grout. You can use any of these three methods to get your expected result.


Question: Do grout color pens work as well as grout colorant?

Answer: Grout color pens are not a long-term solution. It brightens the grout instantly. But the color doesn’t stay for a long time.

Question: what to do to change the color of pigmented grout?

Answer: Changing the color of pigmented grout isn’t an easy job. Even after cleaning and using multiple methods, it can stay the same. It’s better to apply a new coat over the existing grout or redoing the whole thing. You might need professional help with this.

Question: Does grout get lighter as the colorant dries?

Answer: After the colorant dries off, it can become a shade paler. For example, cream color can turn off-white. You can use another layer of colorant on the grout.


Now you know how to lighten a grout that is too dark. Hopefully, the methods we mentioned came to your use.

Good luck lightening your dark grout!