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Home » Blog » How To Clean Your Shower Head (With The Help Of Vinegar!)

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By: Rain City Maids
Sep 05, 2022

Maybe you are here because the limescale on your shower head makes it look like a crumb-coated cake, or the water stream is more like a drip. But one way or another, your shower head could use a good cleaning.

However, as you may already know, limescale is not that easy to remove. This problem happens because limescale is composed of hardened minerals left behind after the water dries. 

But don't worry; getting rid of the buildup on your shower head is possible. Keep reading to find out how!

How to clean your shower head using vinegar

Dealing with mineral buildup can seem more challenging if you don't use the right product. Thankfully, all you need is already in your kitchen—the acidic properties of white vinegar are perfect for breaking down the structure of the hardened minerals.

Step #1. Get the vinegar ready

You won't need much more than a bag with vinegar to remove the limescale from your shower head. First, grab a bag big enough to fit the fixture in. Then, fill the bag with vinegar (just the right amount to cover the nozzle completely).

Step #2. Submerge your shower head

It's time for your shower head to take a beauty bath. Pick the bag filled with vinegar and cover the fixture until fully immersed (be careful not to spill). To keep the bag in place, secure it with a rubber band, a zip tie, or anything tight enough to hold its weight.

Step #3. Let the vinegar work its magic

The longer you let your shower head soak in the vinegar, the better. So, if your shower head is particularly dirty (or you just want to make things easier), leave it submerged for around two hours. If not, one hour will be enough.

Warning: If your shower head is made of brass, gold, or has nickel-coating, don't soak it for more than 30 minutes.

Step #4. Finishing touches

For the final part, remove the bag carefully and pour the now dirty vinegar into the drain. Then, grab a soft toothbrush and scrub any remaining flakes off your shower head.

After brushing off all the stains, rinse your shower head with warm water, then dry it with a clean cloth to prevent more buildup from forming. That's it; now you can enjoy a nice shower again!

How to clean your shower head thoroughly

Does your shower head have water pressure problems? If so, you might need to disassemble it to carry on a deep cleaning treatment. To get the job done, you'll need the following tools:

  • An adjustable wrench
  • Pliers
  • A needle or paperclip
  • A thick rag
  • White vinegar
  • A bowl
  • Plumber's tape

Once you get the proper tools, you can jump into action!

Step #1. Detach the shower head

First, you'll need to wrap a rag around the shower arm before trying to unscrew it. Otherwise, you'll expose your shower head to scratches, leaving it worse than before. Place the pliers around the rag and use them as leverage while unscrewing the fixture with the wrench.

Step #2. Give it a good cleaning

Once you've uninstalled your shower head, check into the threaded end and use a pair of thin pliers to remove the flow regulator. Now, you'll be able to reach the screen filter. Take the filter out to clean it with a toothbrush, then rinse it. Before continuing, return the pieces to their place.

Now, you're going to do something similar to the bag method. However, since the shower head is now detached from the wall, you can simply fill a bowl with vinegar and put the fixture in it. Let your shower head soak for about eight hours this time.

After time's up, take out the shower head and scrub it with a soft brush to remove any residue. Do you remember the paperclip? Use it to poke the water holes and break down the buildup inside. Don't forget to rinse your fixture before screwing it back in place.

Warning: For plated brass, nickel, or gold shower heads, soak them for 30-minute intervals. Any longer than that will damage the material.

Step #3. Reconnect your shower head

You're almost done! What's left to do is to reattach your shower head. But before that, wrap some plumber's tape around the threads of the shower arm to prevent water leaks.

After screwing back the nozzle, turn on your shower to the hottest temperature and let it run for a few minutes. That way, the broken-down minerals inside the water holes will be ejected. Finally, dry your shower head with a clean cloth.

Extra tip: If you notice low water pressure, turn off your shower and poke the clogged holes again with the paperclip.

How to prevent limescale on your shower head

If you are tired of dealing with poor water pressure and a shower head looking like a Christmas prop, you may appreciate these tips:

  1. Clean it regularly. Every time you use your shower (especially after a hot shower), wipe and dry the nozzle before getting out. This way, you won't let minerals stick to the shower head surface.
  2. Use a lemon. When you notice signs of hardened minerals in your shower head (a thin white film, for example), rub a lemon half all around it. Then, wipe and dry.
  3. Press the tiny water holes. If your shower head has rubber pores, you can use your finger to rub them firmly. The movement will help to detach recently formed buildup inside the tiny holes.
  4. Make a vinegar solution. Once a week, you can spray your nozzle with a solution made of equal parts vinegar and warm water. After spraying it, wipe it with a microfiber cloth and dry it with a clean rag.

Do you have pending chores? We can help you!

If cleaning your shower head leaves you little time to do your other chores, you can let Rain City Maids take care of them! Whether you choose a standard or deep cleaning package, our skilled and thoroughly vetted cleaners will leave your house spotless. Get your free quote now! 

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