Sealing grout is a relatively easy process but it needs to be done correctly . Knowing how to properly seal grout can save your tile and grout from hazing, streaking and many other potential problems you may encounter when you don't properly seal your grout. |
It is important to properly seal tile and grout using a professional grade sealer to keep it clean, stain free and sanitary. Grout is an extremely porous material that can harbor dirt, mold, mildew and bacteria. Sealing your grout will protect it from these contaminates and keep your grout sanitary and clean. You should seal your grout 72 hours after it has been installed and you should also seal your grout periodically for the life of your tile installation. Also most stone tile surfaces should be sealed as well. This includes porous stones like travertine, limestone, marble and sandstone. You can read here about the various tile sealing options available to you.
Deep cleaning your grout with strong alkaline and acidic cleaners can break down the sealers in your grout so you should always reseal your grout after you deep clean your tile and grout. Grout sealers will also break down over time so you should try to seal your grout at least every 3-5 years. You should always thoroughly clean your grout before you seal your grout. You do not want to seal in any dirt and contaminates in your grout that will make this dirt even more difficult to clean if it is sealed in the grout. You can read about how to clean grout on our grout cleaning information page.
Shower grout gets a lot of abuse so you should seal your shower grout at least once a year. The wet grout in showers is a perfect place for dangerous mold including toxic to live and breed. You do not want the mold to grow in your grout and get into your homes walls. Mold in your homes walls can release dangerous mold spores that can be harmful to your health. This makes sealing shower grout extremely important.
There are two main types of applicators that can be used to seal your grout; the brush tipped applicator and the roller tipped applicator. The brush tipped applicator is convenient for small grout joints and for sealing vertical surfaces. The roller type applicator will store more sealer and it will apply more sealer quickly and is best for floor tiles in large areas with sanded grout. The concepts for sealing your grout work the same when using either of these grout sealer applicator devices.
You should seal your grout when it is not too hot and you do not want to seal the grout in direct sunlight. It is important that the sealer does not dry on the tile surface. If it is a hot summer day try to seal in the morning or evening when it is the coolest. You also do not want to seal in freezing cold temperatures. You should read the grout sealer manufactures instructions about the proper temperatures allowed for using their grout sealer.
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