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speedster1 04-25-2010 06:22 AM

First tiling project. Time to grout and seal.
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Just dove into my first tiling project in a remodeled bath. I laid about 50 sq' of porceline 12" tile. The tiles are laid and have been drying for about 20 hours now. I've impressed myself :) I'm heading out soon to pick out some grout and sealer. I used Mapei thinset on top of hardi backer and plan to get mapei grout. I've been watching numerous do-it-yourself videos online on how to properly grout tile. I don't expect to have any problems. But I do have a few questions concerning grouting and sealing.

The tiles are porceline and located in a bathroom. After grouting the tiles how long do I need to wait before putting sealer on the tiles? Considering I put porceline down instead of natural stone I assume I need to just put grout sealer on the joints themselves rather than over the entire tile. Is this true? Also, how many coats of sealer should I put on? How long will the sealer need to dry before I can reinstall the toilet and vanity?

Lastly, what color of grout do you recommend for the tile I installed. The tile store had them on disply with grey grout and it looked nice. I wouldn't have ever picked grey if I had't seeen it on display. My first guess would've been some type of beige color. What do you think?

Heres a pic.

Russman 04-25-2010 09:11 AM

First you have to find out if the tile is glazed or not. If it is glazed, that means it has a finish on top of the tile already. Do not put any sealer on the tile itself if this is the case. Only the grout. You need to wait about 3 days for the grout to cure (reach its hardness)before you can apply sealer on grout.

If the tile is unglazed, you need to put sealer on both tile and grout.

Colour is a matter of opinion. The most common way to pick grout is to go one colour lighter than the tile. Any neutral beige would be fine with this colour. You dont want to take away from the tile look, so grout should just blend in....

speedster1 04-26-2010 04:57 AM

I believe this porceline tile is glazed. How can I tell for sure. It seems to have a pretty good sheen to it. What type of sealer do you recommend? If all I need to seal are the grout lines are those roller type products the way to go?

BTW, I waited 24 hours and grouted yesterday with Laticrete 1500 and used the grout enhancer. I chose Natural grey as the color and this morning I looked at it and I think it looks great. The grey has lightened as it dries and seems to really compliment the tile.

All in all, the grouting was much easier than the cutting and laying of the tile. well actually, laying the tile wasn't too bad but cutting was not as easy. We had some chipouts and some complicated cuts that border my bathtub that weren't the easist to make. In the end I think it will look great and is definately a step up from the vinyl flooring that was in the original bath.

oh'mike 04-26-2010 05:24 AM

Glad to hear the grouting went fine!

As to the sealer---The grout you chose is loaded with latex --so sealing is optional.

Sealers vary--read the directions and follow them as to time between coats.

Do not---Ever---Get that sealer on the face of the tiles!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The sealer will leave a shiny streak that you will not like. Use a shallow bowl and a sponge paint brush to apply.

Caulk the joint at the tub and tile with silicone caulk when all work is complete.

If you want or need a tip or two on neat caulking,just ask.--Mike--

speedster1 04-26-2010 06:04 AM

Thanks for the info. When I chose the Natural grey grout from laticrete they also sold a sanded siliconized acrylic latex caulk in the same color. I planned to use that beteeen my tub and tile. I didn't realize sealing was optional with the product I chose :confused1:

Think I'll stop by my tile store and see if they sell Stonetech or 511 sealers.

oh'mike 04-26-2010 06:28 AM

I worked for a tile store many long years ago---We got an extra big commission on sealers---

Most modern grouts don't need them, Installer can earn a few extra bucks applying it--the stores make a few extra dollars on the tile sale---

Seriously,do you think the counter guys at the local tile store are truly knowledgeable?
The only requirement when I was hired at the tile store was--will you work for what we can afford to pay you?

I use epoxy grout--saves me the argument---

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