Hacking Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner

img_2757Like many, I enjoy a clean house.  There are plenty of gadgets out there that help you keep on top of the various cleaning duties – Scrubbing Bubbles: Automatic Shower Cleaner being one of them.  While some of the gadgets you pick up are really gimmicky, this one seems to help reduce some of the heavy cleaning the shower needs with minimal effort.

Now this doesn’t eliminate the need to clean the shower, and I should be honest here – when it does need cleaning I manage to neatly avoid doing the dirty work, but I can say that the Scrubbing Bubbles cleaner seems to lengthen the time between shower cleanings.

The only bummer is that the bottles are not refillable.  We stretch ours out by only using it every 2nd day or so (instead of every day as is recommended).  It still would be nice to be able to refill with a concentrate and dilute with water.  The catch is – the caps do not screw off, so you can’t open the bottles.

Let’s take a look at how the cap works:


So on the left you can see a close-up of the threaded part of the bottle. Very sneaky, they’ve put a pair of small ‘ratchet’ nubs – there is another pair on the other side as well.  Looking at the cap, you can see the corresponding teeth.  Once tightened down, the cap is very solidly locked onto the bottle.

To hack this – you’ll need two of the scrubbing bubbles empty containers.  From one you will recover a cap, from the other the bottle.  To remove (destroy) the cap, I used a pair of wire cutters and a pair of needle nose pliers.  I started a cut up the side of the cap, then grabbed the edge of the cut with the pliers and peeled it back.  I used 2 or three cuts until I managed to free the cap from the bottle.  Removing (destroying) the bottle to recover a cap was easier, but I used the same basic approach: a small cut, followed by the pliers to twist the material away.  Go slow (and carefully with sharp tools!) since you want to avoid any damage to the part you are trying to keep.


The bottle must be modified to removing the nubs.  The plastic is a hard plastic which seemed to respond nicely to a coarse file I had in my workshop.  A few minutes of work and I had smoothed over the two pairs of nubs – the cap now opens and closes easily.  Now we’ve got a refillable container.

3 thoughts on “Hacking Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner”

  1. I made mine reusable by cutting a hole in the top. I fill it with vinegar to use daily. It does leave a vinegar smell in the bathroom. I think my next step is to fashion a cork to put in the hole hopefully eliminating the smell from the vinegr.

  2. Hey,
    You can also use vice grips and just remove the cap that way. It screws back on and you can refill the container with any solution you desire. Also works on Swiffer mop too.

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