Is there any real reason why a home owner shouldnt use 100% silicone on things like this? Aside from it costing a little more, I find it a far superior product as far as its strength and lifespan compared to caulk which I have had trouble with peeling and discoloring
Just curious, any reason why dhue couldnt use silicone in this instance? More curious if theres ever a place NOT to use it
Kevin: A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
The primary reason why experienced DIY'ers are reluctant to use silicone caulk is because it is so hard to remove. Yes you can take a utility knife and get MOST of it out easily, but that's not good enough. The internet's DIY Q&A forums are full of newbie homeowners asking how to get the replacement silicone caulk they want to put around their bathtub to STICK.
The problem is that NOTHING sticks to silicone caulk, not even silicone caulk. So, even a microscopically thin film of silicone caulk over the glazed tiles around a bathtub or on the tub itself (or both) will be sufficient to prevent the new silicone caulk from sticking.
DAP (Dow's consumer products division) makes a product called "Silicone-Be-Gone" which is really nothing more than gelled mineral spirits. SBG doesn't dissolve the old silicone caulk, it just causes the old silicone to swell up and get softer so that it can be more easily removed by mechanical means like scraping, scrubbing or brushing.
When I remove old silicone caulk around bathtubs, I use Silicone-Be-Gone. After I think I've removed all of the old silicone caulk, I wash off that SBG with water, dry with a paper towel and then paint a very fine abrasive powder on (like portland cement or cement based floor leveler compound) with a small artist's paint brush. If any soft residual silicone remains, the powder will become stuck to it. Otherwise, it'll wipe off the surface of the tub and tiles easily. In this way I can locate and remove any remaining silicone caulk so that I can be sure I've removed the old silicone COMPLETELY. Only then will the new silicone caulk stick properly everywhere it should.
Now, think about what kind of problems you're going to face if you've used silicone caulk around all your doorways, windows, counter tops, etc. You've got tons of work to remove that silicone caulk (if needed) in order to use something that's not so difficult to remove (if needed).
I very much like a caulk made in the USA by the Henry Company called Kop-R-Lastic. It's cohesive strength is even higher than it's adhesive strength, which means it sticks to itself even better than it sticks to common construction materials. That means that if you ever want to remove it, you just get one end started and it pulls CLEANLY off your window or door like a rubber rope. It has about the same strength and elasticity as silicone and it's paintable. I have 66 windows in my apartment block, and I won't use any other caulk on them.