According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary grout is a thin mortar that is used for filling spaces as the joints in masonry or ceramic tile); also: any number of various other materials (as a mixture of cement and water or chemicals that solidify) used for a similar purpose. Grout is a building material.
What Materials You Will Need:
Grout comes in two basic types: sanded and unsanded. To determine which grout type you will require, you will first need to determine the width of the joint between the tiles. If 1/8” or less, use unsanded, but if more than 1/8” use sanded grout. Both types come in premixed and powdered form.
In addition to the grout mixture you will need to invest in a bucket (for water if using powdered grout), a grout spreader (a kitchen spatula works just as well), a sponge, a grout shaper, a dry cloth, a caulking gun and some quality grout sealer along with caulk in order to complete this project.
6 Steps to the Perfect Grout Tile Lines
If you are using powdered grout, mix it up according to manufacturer’s recommendations, prior to proceeding to the next step. It is recommend that you add the powder to the water, rather than adding the water to the powder. You should aim for a thick, creamy texture, much like toothpaste.
Using the grout spreader at a 45 degree angle spread a generous amount of the material over the entire tiled surface in long, upward, diagonal strokes. Press the material firmly into the joints to completely fill them. Work in small areas at a time but take care to install the grout in other areas in the same fashion.
Using a damp cloth or sponge, carefully sweep it diagonally across the tiles, so that you can wipe away any excess grout. Take care not to remove any grout from the tile’s edges. Don’t scrub or use too much water! Rinse cloth or sponge and repeat as needed.
Once the grout has had a chance to harden slightly, use a grout shaper to neaten up the joints. You can also gently remove some of the grout from the corners and around the tub to make room for caulk. Caulk is used at corners instead of grout because of its flexibility.
Let the grout dry per the manufacturer’s recommendations prior to apply sealer. Once dry, apply a thin coat of sealer using either a paintbrush, spray bottle or sealer applicator. Follow all recommendations on the sealant’s label. Quickly wipe away any excess sealer with a clean cloth to avoid puddles.
Let dry for 24 hours before walking on newly grouted tiles – or taking a shower/bath in your newly grouted tub or shower. If you have any questions, or don’t feel up to the job of DIY grouting, please feel free to contact any one of our chapter members.
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