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How to Get Water Spots Off Glass Shower Doors

By February 26, 2021Home maintenance
How to get water spots off glass shower doors

Most homeowners love having glass shower doors.  It adds class to a bathroom and makes the room look nice and inviting.  However, after you shower, there are water drops left on the glass shower doors.  If not removed right away, they become water spots on the glass.  They aren’t just from the water but also from the soap.

Wondering how to get water spots off glass shower doors? There are different things to try such as vinegar, baking soda paste, lemon juice, and magic eraser.  We will go over why this is important, what causes the water spots, what to use, other suggestions, and maintenance. 

Why This is Important

Keeping the glass shower doors clean is important.  If not, the water spots will build up on the glass shower doors and that can be hard to remove. It also is not appealing.

Causes of the Water Spots on Glass Shower Doors

Causes of the Water Spots on Glass Shower Doors

The water spots are caused by a combination of things: soap scum and also hard water.  Soap scum is made up of body oils, soap, and shampoo in the shower. Water has calcium and magnesium in it and when it mixes with the fatty acids in the soap, it dries.  When it dries, it leaves a crusty film. 

Hard water has high mineral content and leaves spots that are often called limescale. Then, the residue from soap sticks to it and creates more of a problem. Homes that have hard water may notice that the soap doesn’t foam up well and makes it harder to get the body clean. 

On the other hand, homes with softer water will have suds from the soap and water and the grime will come right off the glass. Before you look into getting a water softener, there are some methods to try.

How to Get Water Spots Off Glass Shower Doors

White Vinegar

Why does white vinegar work?  It has acid that will break down the substance.  One method is to take the white vinegar from your pantry and put it on a wet sponge.  Wipe down the shower doors with this concoction. 

Keep applying the vinegar to the door for 5 minutes and then it should start to dry.  Once it starts to dry, it should start to flake off.  However, if it is layers and layers of soap scum, it may take elbow grease to remove it. Use a clean sponge and wipe it down and see if the scum starts to fall off.

Another method with vinegar is to take ½ cup of warm white distilled vinegar with ½ cup of dish soap and put it in a spray bottle.  Mix it together. Spray it on the glass and then wipe it off with a sponge or soft cloth.

Baking Soda Paste

This is made by using a ½ cup of baking soda and adding water and mixing it to make a paste. Rub it onto the glass with a soft cloth.  You may need more if you have a large glass shower enclosure.  Put vinegar in a spray bottle so you can rinse it off.  However, if you have a stone or travertine shower, don’t use vinegar.

You can also try mixing ½ cup of baking soda and vinegar together to make a paste and then apply it to the shower doors. Leave it for 20 minutes and then rinse off.

Lemon Juice

Not sure you like the smell of vinegar or the smell bothers you?  You can use lemon juice to clean the glass shower door.  This can be done by mixing the juice of three lemons and a cup of distilled water in a spray bottle.  Wait 5 minutes. Use a microfiber cloth that is clean and wipe the surface.



If you have kids, you probably have Borax sitting around the house as it is used to make slime.  However, it is also used to clean glass shower doors.  Just like baking soda, mix enough with water to make a thick paste.

Put it on a damp sponge and rub it onto the glass.  Use distilled water to rinse it. This should remove the water spots. Not sure where to find Borax at the store?  It is usually in the laundry aisle.

Magic Eraser

Magic eraser is good for cleaning in various areas of the home.  It has cleaning agents in it already.  When you are done with the shower, use the magic eraser to clean the glass door right away.  The warm air and the water will help the soap scum and dirt loosen for easy wiping.

Other suggestions: Use Bar Keepers and a scotch sponge and then clean it off with a mixture of ½ cup vinegar and ½ cup dishwashing liquid

If Nothing Else Works Use Ammonia

You can use ammonia, but we recommend only after you have tried the other natural remedies above.  This is because ammonia is a chemical that you don’t want to breathe in and you need to have an open door or window to let the chemicals out.  Make sure you wear gloves and a mask when using this.

You can mix together three parts water and one part ammonia in a spray bottle.  Be sure you are not using bleach or any other cleaning agents at the same time as this can cause toxic fumes in the air. Spray the glass that has the soap scum and scrub the surface with a brush while it is still damp.  Rinse with water and dry the surface.

Maintenance to Keep the Glass Shower Doors Clean

Maintenance to Keep the Glass Shower Doors Clean

Spray Daily With a Daily Shower Cleaner

You can buy a daily shower cleaner, however, making your own is less expensive and better for your health. To do this, take 1 cup distilled water, ½ cup of white vinegar, few drops of liquid dish soap, and 10-20 drops of essential oils. The essential oils just add a nice fragrance and not required to be used.

Mix this concoction in a spray bottle.  After your shower, dry the glass thoroughly and then spray it in your shower and leave it.  You can use it daily in your shower to clean the glass.  However, if you have stone on the floor or walls, this is not safe to use. You will want to research products that are safe to use on stone.

Switch Soaps

If you use bar soap and notice the scum is building up, switch to a soap that has talc to alleviate this problem. The other alternative is to use body wash or liquid soap as they have the ingredients to help fight off the soap scum.

Soften Your Water

If you have hard water, you may want to look into a whole home water softener.  Now, this is expensive so unless you are having issues in other places of the home such as maintaining plumbing or cleaning clothes, then you may not want to add the extra expense and use one of the other maintenance methods.

Air Out the Shower

Air Out the Shower

After taking a shower, leave the door open to the bathroom and let the room air out.  This is important so the water dries naturally and hopefully doesn’t leave water spots on the glass door. Run the vent in the bathroom for 20-30 minutes after the shower and this can also help with preventing mold in the bathroom .

Actually, all of the ideas presented here for cleaning the glass shower doors can be used to clean the entire bathroom!

Dry Off the Glass Shower Doors With a Shower Squeegee

Dry Off the Glass Shower Doors With a Shower Squeegee

Using the squeegee after the shower is a good idea and teach the family how to use it as well.  It is an inexpensive day to get the water off the glass shower doors.  Once you use the squeegee, clean off the rubber blade.  Then, leave the shower door open so that the glass can dry and the moisture can evaporate.

Use a Microfiber Cloth to Get Water Spots Off the Glass Shower Doors

If you like the idea of a microfiber cloth instead to get water off glass shower doors, you can use that to clean after each shower.  Make sure to squeeze out the cloth and let it dry when finished.  You will need to launder these as well at least once a week.

Other Areas to Check in the Bathroom

Other Areas to Check in the Bathroom

Jacuzzi Tub

When you are in your bathroom or cleaning it,  take a look at other areas in there.  Maybe you have a Jacuzzi tub and are starting to see black stuff coming out of the jets.

Oils from the body and the soap and other products can cause build-up in the pipes.  If you don’t have time to clean it each week, at least once a month is a good idea.

Shower and Sink

Is there a sewage smell? It could be a number of things such as the P trap is missing, leaking, or dirty in the sink or shower, or vents to the plumbing could be blocked or there is a leaky pipe or biofilm

Water From the Sink

Also, check the sink to see what the water looks like coming out of the faucet.  Is the tap water cloudy?  If it is, it could be a number of things like the change in temperature or you may need a sediment filter to name a few.



Take a look around the toilet.  Is there any water on the floor near the toilet base?  Checking the tank lid, T-bolts and the wax ring are areas of importance.

Staying on top of the maintenance of the entire bathroom will help you avoid major expenses down the road.

When to Call a Professional

Call a professional if you notice there is an issue with your glass shower doors or if you find any of the other issues mentioned above and need assistance.


Glass shower doors make a bathroom look nice and keep water inside the enclosure.  However, hard water and products that leave soap scum can make them hard to clean.  In addition, doing maintenance through the year can help you find any other issues and hopefully catch them early.  We can inspect your well in Houston, TX and surrounding areas. Have questions for us?  Leave us a reply below!

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