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Re-grout Instead of Replacing Tile

 

If you are planning to replace your tile, you might want to consider re-grouting first. Many times, old, dirty or damaged grout detracts from the appearance of tile. Your tile may not need to be replaced at all.

Re-grouting is not as difficult as you might think. It is obviously easier and much less expensive than replacing tile.

Clean the Tile and the Grout

Start by cleaning the tile and grout. Scrubbing with a toothbrush works great. If there is mold or mildew, spray the area with bleach, let it set for an hour or two, scrub, and rinse thoroughly. It is okay to leave the grout damp when beginning this project. If there are any badly damaged or really dirty areas of grout, scrape those sections away with a putty knife or paint scraper. After a good cleaning, you may decide that re-grouting isn't necessary. If it is, continue with the following steps:

Choose the Right Product and Prepare it Correctly

Make sure the grout you choose is the proper type for you project. There are different types for walls, floors, showers, etc. Consult with a service person from your local home improvement center if necessary. You don't have to use the same color as the original grout, but make sure you choose a color that works with your tile and with the rest of your decor. Mix the grout precisely according to the package directions.

Apply Grout

Smooth the grout on generously with a trowel. Be sure to work it into crevices carefully. Check for air bubbles or holes and go over these areas until the joints between the tiles are completely filled. As the grout begins to dry, wipe excess grout from the tiles with a damp sponge and continue until tile is completely clean. Allow the grout to cure completely before using the tiled area. Apply grout sealer for protection. It will help your grout stay looking fresher and cleaner for about a year. After that time, clean grout thoroughly and reapply sealer.