Hard water stains on shower glass appear as white streaks or marks. In extreme cases where a lot of scale has built up over time, the entire glass surface may appear cloudy.
These stains occur when hard water falls on the glass as people shower. The water then evaporates and leaves behind minerals, mostly calcium carbonate.
Hard water stains, or scale, will not damage shower glass. But they affect the appearance of the glass and the overall aesthetics of the bathroom. And if you don’t remove the stains, they can become permanent.
In this quick guide, we explain different ways to get water stains from shower doors and glass. These tips also work for most bathroom surfaces including faucets and exposed shower pipes. So how to clean glass shower doors with hard water stains?
The easiest and cheapest way to tackle hard water stains on shower glass is using vinegar. White vinegar works great.
Start with a 1:1 vinegar and water mixture. Apply the solution onto the glass using a sponge. An even easier way to apply the solution is using a spray bottle.
Do not rinse the glass, yet. Let the solution sit for 10-20 minutes depending on how bad the stains are. This gives the vinegar time to dissolve the calcium carbonate.
After the short wait, take the shower spray head and rinse the glass with hot water. Wipe the glass dry to prevent any new scale from forming.
If, after rinsing, you still see hard water stains, try using undiluted vinegar. Let it sit for longer, an hour or even overnight, then rinse with hot water.
Note: Using vinegar does not prevent future hard water stains. We recommend keeping a spray bottle of vinegar and water in the bathroom. Everyday, after the last shower, spray down the doors and walls then rinse with hot water.
Use Shower Glass Cleaner
If you want an easy way to keep your shower doors stain-free, get a shower glass cleaner. You can get one on Amazon or a local supermarket.
Shower glass cleaners typically come in the form of sprays. They help with different kinds of stains including scale, dirt and soap scum.
Most shower glass cleaners are easy to use. You spray it on the glass, then leave it for several hours or overnight. During the next shower, rinse the glass with the shower spray head.
Other Homemade Scale Cleaners
In addition to vinegar, there are several other kitchen products that are great for cleaning hard water stains off shower glass. Here are the most effective.
- Baking soda. You can use baking soda mixed with just warm water, but it works best when mixed with vinegar. It quickly breaks down tough stains on shower glass. You can also use baking soda after applying vinegar on the glass. Put some baking soda on a sponge and use it to gently scrub away hard water stains, then rinse with water.
- Lemon juice also works great since it’s an acid. Mix lemon juice with water then spray onto shower door. For tough stains, apply lemon juice undiluted.
How to Permanently Prevent Hard Water Stains
Spraying down shower glass daily will keep hard water stains from forming again. But if you want your shower to stay stain-free without any daily spraying, the only option is to soften your shower water.
Soft water doesn’t contain as many minerals, and doesn’t leave stains behind. It’s also better for your skin and hair.
A whole house water softener will treat all the hard water in your home, including shower water.
You can also try a shower head filter such as the popular Ionic shower head. Most of these have very positive reviews from customers living in hard water areas.