Dingy shower stall floor needs elbow grease

Q: I have an extremely strange and dirty floor in my plastic-like shower stall. It has gotten progressively darker through the years, and I have tried everything known to man to get it clean. The surface is rather pebbly. I was wondering if there is a paint I could use, but I'd hate to try and paint over the existing soil.

A: Your shower stall is probably either fiberglass or acrylic. One option is to restore the floor with a kit such as the one sold by the Bathtub Refinishing Referral Network at http:refinishingonline.com/restore.htm.

Before you go to that extent, though, it's worth trying some other methods to clean the floor.

American Standard and Kohler recommend these products: Spic and Span, American Standard Tub and Shower Cleaner (it can be ordered by the case from some American Standard retailers), Fantastik Antibacterial Heavy Duty, Lysol Bathroom Cleaner and Tilex Bathroom Cleaner. Don't use anything in an aerosol can, both companies said.

Here are some other harmless tricks that are worth a try:

  • Plug the drain and flood the shower floor with a solution of water and OxiClean stain remover. Let it sit for more than an hour, and then scrub with a nylon brush or nonscratching scrubber.
  • Wet the floor, sprinkle it with 20 Mule Team Borax, let it sit a few minutes and scrub.
  • Clean the floor with a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.

If all else fails, you can have either fiberglass or acrylic recoated professionally, or you can buy a do-it-yourself kit to recoat fiberglass.

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