How To Clean Glass Shower Doors

Step-By-Step Instructions on How to Clean Glass Shower Doors

Cleaning Shower Door

How To Clean Glass Shower Doors

December 22, 2022

Glass shower doors are one of the most popular options for creating a stunning high-end look in the bathroom, with the industry expected to grow to over $4.51 billion by 2026. These sought-after doors offer complete water protection while creating an open-concept feeling, an appreciated feature, especially in smaller bathrooms. As prevalent as glass shower doors are, they do have one drawback that can frustrate homeowners and make the space look dingy; the constant accumulation of hard water stains and soap scum. If you're one of the millions struggling to keep your glass shower door clean, keep reading to find out how you can quickly and easily remove pesky hard water stains and soap scum for a crystal-clear door you'll adore.

What Causes Hard Water Stains And Soap Scum?

If you've ever noticed a ring around your faucet or spots covering your glass door, you have seen the results of hard water. Many people falsely believe that dirt is responsible for their shower staining, but their water may actually be the culprit. Hard water contains high levels of calcium and magnesium, minerals generally found in all water supplies. The mineral deposits occur when the water source (groundwater or rain) comes in contact with soils and rocks and enters into the municipal water supply.

There are four types of hard water classification, measured by the mineral content's grains per gallon or GPG. These classifications include:

  • Soft - Contains fewer than 1 GPG dissolved mineral content
  • Moderately Hard - Contains between 1 - 7 GPG dissolved mineral content
  • Hard - Contains between 7 - 10 GPG dissolved mineral content
  • Very Hard - Contains more than 10 GPG dissolved mineral content

Hard water will leave a chalky residue, film, or crust on your glass shower door as the water dries and the minerals appear. Soap scum is a direct result of hard water since the water and soap don't mix well together. The dissolved minerals in the water and the fatty acids in the soap repel each other, making it difficult to form a lather. If you've dealt with hard water and can't ever seem to create the suds you see on TV commercials, you're not alone. In fact, around 90% of all US homes have some form of hard water, making soap scum one of the most common bathroom nuisances. While soap scum causes unsightly grayish substances to stick to your shower door, it is also a magnet for mildew and mold, which can cause health issues in those with respiratory illnesses and allergies.

How To Clean Hard Water Stains And Soap Scum

Cleaning hard water stains and soap scum from your glass shower door is the best way to keep your bathroom looking and smelling fresh while avoiding harmful mold growth. There are multiple cleaning options available, so you can choose the one that works best for you.

White Vinegar

White vinegar is one of the most popular cleaning materials thanks to its naturally high acidity, which quickly dissolves mineral deposits, grime, dirt, and grease. It also effectively kills bacteria, hampering the growth of mold and mildew on hard surfaces. Additionally, white vinegar is safe to use around pets and people, giving you unmatched peace of mind and limiting your family's chemical exposure. To use white vinegar on your glass shower door, follow the steps below:

  • Pour one cup of white vinegar into a spray bottle
  • Dilute by half using distilled water
  • Spray the mixture directly onto hard water stains and soap scum
  • Let sit for at least fifteen minutes
  • Using a scrub pad or brush, lightly rub the stain
  • Rinse with distilled water or wipe with a clean cloth

If you have stubborn hard water stains, you can increase the white vinegar ratio, creating a more potent cleaning solution. An added bonus with using a white vinegar solution is the option to use it on virtually every hard surface in your home as a powerful natural anti-bacterial cleaning spray.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice works similarly to white vinegar, dissolving mineral deposits and keeping your glass shower door bacteria-free. Create a wonderful smelling and effective cleaner using the following method:

  • In a bottle, combine one part lemon juice with two parts water
  • Spray the glass shower door with solution
  • Let sit for ten minutes
  • Rinse with distilled water or wipe with a clean cloth


Using a squeegee after every shower is an excellent way to stop hard water stains before they stop. Since the staining and soap scum occur when the water evaporates, leaving behind the mineral deposits, removing the water immediately will prevent it from occurring in the first place.

After showering, immediately use the squeegee to remove the water, starting at the top of the glass shower door and pulling down to the bottom.

Keep your squeegee in the shower and use it daily for the best results. You can find them inexpensively at stores like the Dollar Tree, Amazon, Target, and Walmart, and with proper use, they can last for years!

Commercial Cleaners

There are many commercial cleaners on the market made to target hard water stains and soap scum. These powerful chemicals target the mineral deposits, breaking them up and removing them from hard surfaces. While effective, they do contain potent chemicals which can produce powerful fumes, so be sure to keep the area well-ventilated and store the product out of the reach of children. Some of the most popular and effective cleaners include:

  • Bring It On Cleaner
  • CLR Pro Calcium, Lime, & Rust Remover
  • Tilex Disinfecting Soap Scum Remover Spray
  • Better Life Natural Tub & Tile Cleaner
  • Ettore Water Spot Remover Paste

Can You Prevent Hard Water?

While cleaning hard water stains and soap scum temporarily takes care of the problem, if you're not tackling the root issue, you will forever be one step behind. If you're tired of seeing re-emerging spots on your glass shower door and would like a way to keep it looking cleaner, longer, you should consider the following solutions.

A Water Softener System

A water softener system filters all the water that enters your home, removing the dissolved minerals that are responsible for the staining and soap scum you experience in the shower. While there are many benefits to installing a softener system, it can have some drawbacks as well. Although the minerals responsible for dirtying your glass shower door can feel like a nuisance, they actually offer some health benefits when consumed. Eliminating them from your home completely, reduces the amount of calcium and magnesium you will ingest from drinking tap water, which are two vital components your body needs. It also adds a considerable amount of sodium which can be dangerous for those with certain medical conditions. However, if you typically drink bottled or filtered water, the benefits of adding a water softener system may definitely outweigh the negatives.


A descaler works similarly to a softener system but only removes the excess minerals from your water, leaving a healthy amount behind. There are also salt-free models available which don't add high amounts of sodium, making the water safer to consume. Without the excessive mineral content, you will no longer have to deal with annoying hard water stains while still enjoying the beneficial nutrients your water naturally contains.

Lower The Water Temperature

The hotter your water, the more prevalent the mineral buildup becomes, reducing the life of your water heater and increasing the stains and soap scum deposits. Lower the temperature on your hot water heater will help reduce the mineral concentration, which can increase the length of time between necessary cleanings. Flushing your water heater regularly can also reduce the amount of mineral deposits on your glass shower door. While this solution won't eliminate the hard water stains completely, it's an easy way to see a noticeable difference.

If you're tired of hard water stains and soap scum making your shower look dingy, you need Luxoclean. At Luxoclean, we pride ourselves on providing our customers with premium cleaning services for a wide range of needs. Our professional and qualified cleaning team works with you to create a fully customizable cleaning solution that targets your problem areas, resulting in an exceptionally clean space you can be proud of. For those living in Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, and the surrounding areas, we provide bi-weekly and weekly services, including:

At Luxoclean, customer satisfaction is our goal, which is why we're not finished until you're completely satisfied. Using our premium cleaning service is easy; simply schedule your service, and our cleaning professionals will come to your home and thoroughly cleanse it from top to bottom, all you have to do is sit back and relax. Now you can join the long list of satisfied customers who have experienced the Luxoclean difference. When quality matters, Luxoclean delivers, so call us and book your cleaning today!

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