So you’re remodeling the bathroom, and you’ve picked out the perfect Subway Tile pattern from Daltile or American Olean. The tiles are up and in place. Now, it’s time to get grouting. Applying grout to the gaps between tiles is a crucial part of a successful tile install, but all it takes is one misstep, and you might end up with grimey grout stuck forever in a place where it doesn’t belong. Here are a few quick tips and tricks to help you complete a successful DIY grout job.
To show you the proper grouting techniques First you will need to assemble all of the necessary tools. This includes the grout powder, a bucket and a stirring rod for mixing, a grout float for applying the mixture to the tile, tape, rubber gloves to protect the hands, a wet sponge, and copious amounts of paper towels for cleanup.
Next, clean all of the tile joints thoroughly, and use the tape to cover the areas where grout might spill over during application. Follow the manufacturer’s specifications to mix the grout powder with water until it reaches the proper consistency. Slip on the gloves, grab the grout float, and apply the grout mixture at a 45 degree angle to the grout joints. Use the empty float to scrape off the excess grout at a 90 degree angle – diagonally – so no grout is pulled out of the joints. After about 10 minutes, use the damp sponge to wipe away the excess grout that builds up across the tile faces. This may take several applications, and it is a good idea to wait a minute or two between sponge applications to allow the grout in the joints to dry. Finally, use the paper towels to wipe off any excess grout that remains on the tile face.
These steps seem fairly simple, but it is important to remember that although the grout mixture is water-based, once it dries, it will NEVER come off. Be sure to use the dry paper towels to remove every bit of excess grout before it dries, otherwise, you’ll have to look at for as long as you own the home. It’s a good idea to prepare only enough grout mixture for the area you intend to grout. The mixture in the bucket can dry in as little as two hours, so if you planned an epic 12 hour groutathon, be prepared to remix. After the work is done and the excess is all cleaned, the grout should be allowed to set for 48-72 hours. If you absolutely have to walk across it before that time, be sure to lay a thick plywood sheet across the floor to evenly distribute the weight. Then, in a few days, enjoy your work!