How to clean a fiberglass shower base to look like NEW — my best product find yet

Ok, this is such a disgusting story — when you get to the “before” photos after the jump, you will see what I mean. I apologize. I endeavor to redeem my bad housekeeping by letting you see me look like an absolute fright in this silly video.

how to clean fiberglass

“Before”. See? OMG embarrassing.

This is the shower that my husband uses. I am — voluntarily — in charge of cleaning the fiberglass shower base (Swanstone). I am not very diligent about it. Obviously. Historically, I have used Lysol Basin Tub & Tile cleaner liquid in the spray bottle. It has “worked”, but it always took me like three applications, lots of letting it sit and soak, then wiping up over and over with a rag. It took forever and still there were always bits of scum left in the anti skid pattern of the fiberglass shower pan. Then the darn dirt would start building up again, fast and furious. So, you can see why I avoided the task: It was sisyphean.

“After.” All it took for me to become The Queen of Clean was The Right Tools.

But ha!, disgusting fiberglass days are over!

clean kohler tubWhen I bought a special cream cleanser — ROG1 — to clean the bathtub’s slip resistant bottom — which worked like a dream — see the photo ABOVE — I also received a second, general purpose solution — ROG3 — that said it would clean fiberglass. So I gave it a try and Yowza: This fiberglass shower pan also cleaned up like a dream — faster and better than anything I have ever tried before.

But, please note:

Disclaimer: Here on the blog, as homeowners ourselves, we may try new cleaning products aimed at solving our own cleaning problems; if we think we’ve found something promising to consider, we may write about it. But, we are not professional chemists or engineers or home economists. So, please: Do your own research into these products and their suitability for your projects before trying them. More info in Terms of Use.


rog3 for cleaning fiberglassWhat did I use to clean the fiberglass? The ROG3 — the bottle of blue solution on the right. It said on the instructions that it could be used for fiberglass. So I tried it. My process:

I wet down the shower base. I sprayed on the ROG3 pretty liberally, full strength. I let it sit for… like 5 minutes, probably more. I scrubbed with my Dobie. I rinsed. No photo, but watch the video: There was still a little bit of dirt around the drain — the area that always gets the dirtiest. For step two, I reapplied, focusing on this area. Waited. Scrubbed with the Dobie. Rinsed, and….

… I am telling you, this shower pan has not looked this clean since the day it was installed. Even when it was installed, my contractor commented how difficult it was to keep these things clean. Well. Those days are OVER.

Link: It’s expensive, but I think I will buy a lifetime supply this week, just in case — Where to buy your own stash of ROG3.… or, you can buy it from Amazon.

And note: I received no payment or anything to write this review; I discovered and paid for the product I tested myself.

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  1. Barb says

    The gel coat on fiberglass can be destroyed by abbrasives or MAGIC ERASERS. Over the yrs I have had new & older units that I have kept clean with vingar/water 1:1 solution sprayed on & wiped down after each use. The key is to do this after each use. Then on older units with any build up I have used vinegar/dawn 1:1 solution and a REGULAR sponge. Works great. Carnuba car wax keeps the shine. & gel coat in like new condition. DO NOT WAX FLOOR OF SHOWER – FALL HAZARD.

      • says

        Thank you for the input. Since I have a Maxx shower I have contacted them to double check the safety of vinegar. The tech told me ” vinegar is exactly what we recommend to clean our products. Even full strength vinegar sprayed on & wiped down”. I use Carnuba wax 3 – 4 times a yr on the walls & this keeps it shiny & new looking. If one has reservations they should always go with the products recommended by the company that made their unit.
        On previous units in older homes we have owned over the years; you could probably do no further damage to them if you used a wire brush & jack hammer LOL But all because others never cared for them properly & let them get that bad. That is what I want to avoid with a new shower. Keep it nice & clean to start with using the correct product that will not scratch or harm the surface.
        Happy cleaning to all & may your showers always be like new.
        Thanks again

  2. Miss V says

    I used a generic up & up brand “magic eraser” from target this morning and it worked great!!

    • Barb says

      Yes, in my past experience they worked well on old fiberglass. I did not know at the time I was removing the gel gloss. I just do not want to remove it from my new shower. I know you can run into units that are so neglected & so badly built up that you have to use what works. But never would I use it on a new shower I care about keeping. So for me; I use vinegar, or vinegar/Dawn solution & elbow grease. And everyone ALWAYS sprays it & wipes it down after each use. Helps alot.

  3. Toni says

    I used a product called Bartenders Friend. Great product works on all type of surfaces. A lot cheaper than some of the other products recommended. I purchased at Bed Bath & Beyond.

  4. JO says

    how do I clean residue from hard wood floors after removing
    stick on tile square

    how to I remove stick on tile squares

    • pam kueber says

      JO, you should consult with a properly licensed professional – including to ensure that none of these materials including adhesives contain vintage nastiness such as lead and asbestos…

  5. LaWanda says

    My son’s tub is a mess, I want try this cleaner. Wondering how strong the smell is. No ventilation in the room.

  6. Jodi says

    My husband is a machanic, so you can imagine what my shower looks like. It is SO hard to clean because its not just dirt but grease, oil and other mechanical chemicals. It’s hard to clean off of smoothe surfaces, let alone the textured shower floor. Grease and grime get stuck down in the tiny little grooves.

    I used to clean with baking soda (which didn’t appear to clean at all) and then I’d spray it with bleach and let sit then rinse. This helped turn it from black to medium grey..but I wanted it to look and feel clean and it didn’t.

    Lucky for me my grandma is a home cleaner. She always has some pretty cool tips and tricks.

    She suggested spraying Clorox Clean Up and letting sit for about 30 minutes. Then wiping up with a Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser.

    The first time I didn’t have Clorox Clean Up but I had some dollar store brand Magic Erasers. I went through 5 magic erasers but my shower was sparkling clean.

    Now, I use Clorox Clean Up first and I very rarely have to apply elbow grease. I don’t even use up a whole eraser!

    I think this is a pretty cost effective method and I’m sure it will have the same result!

    • pam kueber says

      Hi Jodi, sounds like it works — but I don’t know what it’s doing to the fiberglass long term….

  7. Kim says

    Our shower has a fiberglass floor and tile walls. The walls look great but the fiberglass must have been ruined by previous owner with cleaners because it looks like it is damaged and no way can I clean the grey and orange markings. Is there anything I can do to make it look somewhat presentable?

  8. Carla says

    I use Comet on my shower (I think mine is fiber glass) and it works like a dream!! So easy, too–it’s just a powder :) I think a whole jar is like $2.

    • pam kueber says

      Okay but Abrasives and acids will totally destroyed the finish of your fiberglass, that is the problem

  9. juju says

    hi! we have a tub from 1953 that is IMPOSSIBLE to clean completely. i have tried everything. probably why it is so impossible – everyone before me must have tried all the wrong things and made it that much harder to get clean… now we are going to sell our house and i need to get it as white as possible. i have no idea what it’s made of, but it’s white and i can tell it’s a bit rough on the surface where people have probably used abrasives they shouldn’t have (yes, probably including me). magic eraser takes the gunk off but only if i SCRUB so hard it falls apart. kaboom only worked the first time i tried it. then i never worked again. bleach doesn’t do anything. baking soda doesn’t do anything. method products are like a joke. how do i know what my tub is made of and what is safe for it when it’s so old and ruined? sorry for the long question!

  10. Connie says

    We just installed a new shower made of fiberglass, I’m looking for a cleaner that is easy to use and will not hurt the finish.

  11. Shellee says

    We had our tub reglazed when it was time to sell our house. It looked brand new again…but does cost about $250.

    • pam kueber says

      I have not heard good things about reglazing in terms of longterm durability…. best not to use abrasives and acids to begin with, so you don’t wreck the original finish.

      • says

        We bought a house with a reglazed tub 9 years ago. I only clean with ivory Dishwashing Liquid soap. I still looks good. I’m very happy with it and would recommend it even if it needed reglazing every decade.

  12. Susan says

    I used Dirtex that I got at Ace Hardware for about $4 and a regular scrubbie sponge, and it worked beautifully!!! When I sprinkled the Dirtex on the shower floor and scrubbed with a wet sponge, it immediately started to work. But I decided to generously sprinkle the entire floor pan with the Dirtex, add enough water to turn it into a paste, and waited an hour or two. It looks like new! I don’t know if the way I did it was necessary, but try it!! I’ve tried a lot of other things, and was never able to make a dent in the grunge. This works!!

    • pam kueber says

      I don’t know. I looked this one up and the manufacturer says for: glass, chrome, porcelain, ceramic tile, appliance enamels

      No mention of fiberglass.

      I *think* the issue re whatever you use with fiberglass is that you don’t want to take off or etch (abrade) the fiberglass gel coat – it is protective and makes the fiberglass easier to keep clean. Harsh cleaners will make a surface “look” clean, and it will be — but the protective coating will be wrecked. It will just keep getting dirtier faster if you take off that gelcoat, whereas if you protect the gelcoat your fiberglass shower pan should last… forever.

      I am not an expert – perhaps on Dirtex, best to contact the maker and ask about its use on fiberglass… And/or, ask the maker of your fiberglass shower pan what they recommend.

  13. Jo says

    I am desperately looking for a cleaner for my one person shower enclosure and I think it is fiberglass. I would love to try this product, but my problem is there is very little ventilation in this bathroom and no window and I am pretty sensitive to chemical odors. Can you let me know if this has any odors that eminate while you are waiting for the 5 minutes to soak? Thank you.

    • Gracie Rugile says

      I use cheap shampoo (vo 5) or sauve…and a wash cloth. Use a lot, It cleans beautifully…pretty smell.

  14. Erin says

    Cleaner Recommendation? Anyone use EdFred? I was considering ordering but wanted to give a vinegar solution a try first.
    Congrats on the mislabeling discovery! They should send you a few free bottles for that one! :o)