How To Keep Glass Shower Doors Sparkling: A Step By Step Guide

A modern bathroom with a transparent shower door and a toilet.

Keeping your glass shower doors clean can be challenging; however, with our professional tips and tricks, keeping your shower doors sparkling is easy.

If you’re looking to refresh for the day or unwind and relax, taking a shower is the perfect place to start. But if your glass shower doors are covered with hard water stains and soap scum, taking a shower is anything but relaxing. These smudges and spots detract from your at-home spa experience and can also be hazardous to your health and wellness!

While relatively simple to manage, cleaning your shower doors and tub surrounds can be more challenging than a simple spray and swipe of a sponge. Sometimes, shower door messes require more effort to manage. So today, we’re offering you ways to clean glass shower doors, a step-by-step guide on how to keep them clean, things to avoid, and more.

Keep scrolling to learn more below.

How to Get Your Glass Shower Doors Clean

Cleaning your glass shower doors can take time and effort, but we’re here to teach you how to get them crystal clear without spending your extra time doing it. 

Here’s everything you need to know about cleaning your glass shower doors with vinegar:

WARNING — Before you begin cleaning, it’s important to understand that distilled white vinegar is acetic that easily cuts through soap. However, its acidic nature can damage unsealed natural stone. Consider a different method of cleaning your shower if your shower is made from stone.

STEP 1 — Gather all of the supplies you will require. You’ll need:

  • Spray bottle
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Warm water
  • Dishwashing soap
  • Squeegee
  • Microfiber towels

STEP 2 — Mix together your cleaning solution. In a spray bottle, combine equal parts of distilled white vinegar with warm water. You can add a quart teaspoon to help your cleaning solution cling to the glass surface.

STEP 3 — Saturate the glass with the spray. Spray the cleaning solution onto the glass, starting at the top of the doors. Let the solution sit for five to seven minutes to break down soap scum. You’ll want to address any hard water stains here; more on that below.

STEP 4 — Wipe the glass. With your squeegee, start at the top and swipe down. If the cleaning solution has dried, add a little more. Repeat this process until all of the solution has been removed.

STEP 5 — Remove any smudges, smears, or residual cleaning product with your microfiber towel.

Removing Hard Water Stains: 101

If you haven’t stayed on top of cleaning your glass shower doors, the soap scum and hard water spots from mineral buildup can be tough to remove. Once you’ve cleaned your doors using vinegar, many homeowners opt to tackle these spots with a natural, gentle abrasive before trying a harsh, commercial cleaner.

STEP 1 — Gather all of your supplies. You’ll need:

  • Spray bottle
  • A lemon cut in half
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Dishwashing soap
  • Sponge
  • Microfiber towel
  • Squeegee

STEP 2 — Dip half of the lemon in baking soda and gently scrub the hard water stains.

STEP 3 — Rinse well and gently dry using your microfiber towel. If your glass is clean and clear, you can stop. If the stains persist and the lemon alone doesn’t work, try moving on to step four, where you’ll incorporate the distilled white vinegar and dish soap.

STEP 4 — Heat up a cup of vinegar in the microwave until it’s warm (not boiling), pour in your spray bottle, add a 1/4 teaspoon of dishwashing liquid, and spray the affected area. Let the vinegar sit for five to 10 minutes.

STEP 5 — Dip your wet sponge into dry baking soda and gently scrub the spots. There will be some fizzing (the reaction between baking soda and vinegar), but it will quickly stop.

STEP 6 — Rinse and use your squeegee to remove the water from the glass thoroughly. Use a clean, dry microfiber cloth to remove smears and smudges.

5-Step Guide to Keeping Glass Shower Doors Shiny Bright

Glass shower door maintenance is an integral part of keeping your bathroom clean. If you are not diligent about cleaning your shower doors and removing the water splashes and splatters after every single shower, soap scum created by soap, body oils, and minerals in the water can leave your glass a foggy, spotted mess.

Thankfully, glass shower door maintenance is relatively easy, and by implementing five simple steps, you can keep your shower doors crystal clear. Here’s what you need to know:

STEP 1 — Use your homemade shower cleaner after each shower. There’s no need to buy a product from a store with harsh chemicals when you can make a perfectly effective (and inexpensive) one at home. Store this bottle in your shower, and spray down the glass surfaces in your shower after every use. Here’s the recipe:

In a spray bottle, combine one part hydrogen peroxide, one part rubbing alcohol, one tablespoon of your favorite dish soap, and one tablespoon of dishwasher rinse aid. Fill the rest of the bottle with distilled water and shake before each use. Add 10-20 drops of your favorite essential oil for a spa-like scent boost (try lavender, frankincense, bergamot, geranium, cedarwood, or eucalyptus oil).

STEP 2 — Use a squeegee to remove water buildup on your glass doors after every single shower. Even if you aren’t using a daily shower cleaner, using a squeegee to dry your glass doors is essential to maintain the cleanliness of your doors. Use a microfiber cloth to manage any residual water.

STEP 3 — Once per week, in one of your showers, spray the DIY vinegar-based cleaner on the surfaces of your shower and gently scrub using a sponge or brush. This will significantly limit how much time you actually dedicate to weekly glass shower door maintenance.

PRO TIP: Do this step while your shampoo, conditioner, or hair mask sits.

STEP 4 — Leave your shower door open after your shower to allow it to air out and dry completely. This allows air to circulate, helping with water evaporation and limiting the likelihood of mold growth. Always turn on the vent or bathroom fan during and after your showers. This will help water evaporate quickly, reducing the number of spots and streaks. 

STEP 5 — Apply a long-term hydrophobic coating to your glass doors. Adding a protective coating to your glass shower doors will help repel water spots, soap scum, and various other types of smudges from showing up. This coating allows your shower doors to stay clean, increasing the time between necessary cleanings.

You can find many different brands and options at your local home improvement store or at your favorite online store. Applying this solution is simple; just make sure you carefully slow the manufacturer’s instructions on the back label for the best results.

BONUS STEP — If your home has hard water running through its pipelines, your glass doors are probably spotted with hard water stains. If you want your glass doors cleaned with little effort (you will still need to clean your doors, FYI), investing in a water softener can be incredibly helpful. Not only will your glass be free of spots and marks, but your skin will also feel moisturized, soft, and not so itchy.

While this step is unnecessary, it makes a big difference in maintaining your glass doors. 

ONE MORE BONUS STEP — Again, it’s unnecessary, but consider switching from a body soap bar to a liquid option. Liquid body washes help reduce soap scum since it is less likely to react with the minerals in hard water.

5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Your Glass Shower Doors

If you want crystal-clean glass shower doors, there are a handful of common mistakes you’ll want to avoid making:

  1. Don’t Use an Inadequate Cleaning Solution — The whole reason to use a cleaning solution is to help remove smudges, soap scum, grime, and other types of buildup from the glass. It should never be why streaks and marks are left behind. It’s a shame how many cleaning products on the market do just that.
    Instead of buying a cleaning solution, make one instead. Everything you need to make your own can be found in most kitchens. It really comes down to personal preference. Just know that a homemade product is just as effective, if not more, than one purchased from the store.
  2. Don’t Forget to Clean the Other Components in Your Shower — The focus tends to go to the glass doors of a shower, as it should! They are a beautiful, show-stopping feature in your bathroom. But it’s important to remember that the other parts of your shower also need attention and cleaning.
    Always remember to clean the shower door track, the shower walls, floors, and soap dishes. You’ll also want to pay special attention to the areas where the walls and floors meet, as well as corners. Depending on the materials used in your shower, you can use the same DIY shower cleaning product listed above.
  3. Don’t Use Dirty or Mediocre Cleaning Materials — Using cheap, low-quality materials or those that are unclean will only leave you unsatisfied with the results, which will likely be cloudy, streaky, and foggy.
    Avoid using standard terry cloth cleaning towels that may leave behind lint and fuzz. Don’t use paper towels or newspapers; they can quickly deteriorate or pill when wet and leave bits of rolled-up product. Instead, use a microfiber cloth, which is perfect for cleaning glass. Remember that they can get dirty quickly, so swap out your cleaning materials as needed.
  4. Don’t Forget to Clean the Dust Off First — If it’s been a minute since your last cleaning, it’s important to remember to prep your glass shower doors before cleaning them by dusting them off.
    If you go right into cleaning your shower doors, you’ll likely just be wetting the dust and spreading it all over, making it look worse and harder to clean. Skipping this step could result in dirtying more clothes, using more products, and taking up a lot more time than necessary.
  5. Don’t Forget the Other Side of the Glass — Getting around to tackling the inside of your shower doors is excellent! Good for you! Removing those distracting hard water spots and that soap scum buildup is very exciting and a great first step. But there’s almost no point in doing that step if you’ll skip cleaning the outside part of your glass shower doors, too.

Washing both the inside and outside of your glass shower doors will allow you to really appreciate the beautiful glass feature in your bathroom, and it will look amazing, whether you’re in your shower looking out or outside of your shower looking in. A clean glass shower is so much better to shower in than one that’s dirty! Cleaning both sides makes a massive difference without adding a ton of time or effort to the chore. Besides, the easier side to clean is usually the exterior surface.

Ready for Glass Shower Doors in Your Bathrooms? Contact the Experts at New Concepts Glass Design Today!

If you’re ready to upgrade your bathroom, toss the shower curtain, and enjoy a luxurious spa-like experience in every shower, glass shower doors are the right now, and New Concepts Glass Design can help.

With over three decades of industry experience, our knowledgeable team can help your glass dreams come to life. Whether you want to add glass cabinet door fronts throughout your house, install glass handrails, incorporate a glass wine cellar, or have a different custom project in mind, our professional team is here.

We have worked tirelessly to earn and maintain our outstanding reputation. We are proud to be Northern Utah’s leading glass company and the go-to professionals for custom glass projects in Murray, Salt Lake City, Park City, and other nearby cities across the Wasatch Front and Back. 

Contact New Concepts Glass Design today to schedule your free estimate.