Removing Silicone in Shower

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Old 07-02-20, 07:11 PM
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Removing Silicone in Shower

I've recently tried re-caulking my shower using silicone, but it has turned into a disaster. I couldn't resist going back over the bead and ended up having to remove everything. Now I am realizing how impossible it is to scrape silicone from under the tiles. Basically, I am at the point where if you stand in the shower and look down, it looks ready to be re-caulked - there is no remaining silicone on the outer parts - but if you crouch and look under the tiles, there is still quite a bit left. I've tried plastic, wood, a utility knife, a retractable blade, the hair dryer method, it's not coming out.

1. Can I go ahead and re-caulk?
2. If everything must come out, can you please recommend a method? The seam is not tall but it's pretty deep and unfortunately, I used tons of silicone (porcelain tiles over cast iron pan).
3. Can you recommend a product to use instead of silicone? Something not to difficult to apply or remove... I was going to use DAP 3.0 but it doesn't seem to have good reviews.

Thank you.
 
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Old 07-02-20, 08:01 PM
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If the way it looked is the only reason why you had to start over, I would say that now that you have it cleaned up, you should use silicone again. Silicone will stick to silicone. Other caulks may not if you don't have it all cleaned off of the 2 main surfaces. (What you have in the crack doesnt matter, so dont worry about it).

One good way to caulk is to use painters tape to confine the caulk to only where it needs to go. If you mask off the tile with painters tape... 1/4" or so above the tub, then mask off the tub, 1/4" away from the tile, it limits where the caulk will go when you tool it, making a nice 3/8" wide bead that you can tool. If you arent good with a caulk gun the tape really helps.

And one secret trick that you can use with silicone that you cant with other types of caulk, is to spritz it with a spray bottle of rubbing alcohol immediately after you caulk it, getting it all wet.

Then have a roll of paper towels and tool it with your finger, a widget, or a tool specifically made for tooling caulk. Wipe off the excess as you tool, spritz it with more rubbing alcohol as needed, because silicone wont stick to anything wet with rubbing alcohol.

Then carefully remove the tape once you have it all tooled. You need to be careful as you pull it off so it doesnt touch anything... it should go right in a trash bag. If taking the tape off raised the edge of the silicone, spritz it again and tool it one last time. I think you will be amazed at the results.

And one last thing, hopefully you are using a bathroom silicone that contains mildewicide.

If you just say no, that silicone is OUT, I would probably recommend you use a grout caulk that is the color and texture of your tile grout. You can buy that in the tile aisle of the box store. It comes in many colors to match grout, and you can pick sanded or unsanded, depending on what sort of grout you have... smooth or sanded.

I'm not a fan of many Dap products but I do occasionally use Dap QuickSeal Plus with Microban when I need to use a white sealant in a bathroom, like around a sink or toilet. And with a latex product you can use water in the spray bottle and spritz it a little as you tool it. But not too much as you dont want to dilute and thin the caulking. Often a wet finger and a glass of water to dip it in is all that is needed.
 
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Old 07-02-20, 11:56 PM
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This is a perfect reason to never use silicone in a shower, it's just nasty material when it gets old and is an absolute PITA to remove. Noting worse than someone who used clear silicone that has mold growing underneath.

There are much better products today, siliconiced latex bath caulks with Micro ban, go down easy, stay clean for years and will never look like old silicon caulk again.

Now the problem is your going to have to spend a nice weekend cleaning all that crud out of the shower but once done you will appreciate the effort!
 
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Old 07-03-20, 09:38 AM
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Thank you Xsleeper. I did use silicone designed for bathrooms (DAP Silicone Supreme Kitchen and Bathroom) and tape, but I was a beginner with both silicone and caulking guns and couldn't resist going over and over again...
 
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Old 07-03-20, 09:43 AM
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Thank you Marq1. Can you recommend a product?
 
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Old 07-03-20, 01:49 PM
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DAP KWIK SEAL ULTRA or QuickSeal Plus
 
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Old 07-03-20, 05:39 PM
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Thank you very much. Happy 4th of July!
 
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Old 07-04-20, 10:55 AM
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Years ago (over 26 years, to be exact) DAP products were at the bottom of the cheap-priced caulk price lists and had a quality factor to match. Now DAP is just about all I can find at the box stores.
And today the product, IMHO, is still the cheapest (quality-wise) product. Can anyone tell me why?
 
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Old 07-04-20, 11:01 AM
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I dont know, but I rarely use Dap products. I assume like almost any industry, they try to make things as cheaply as they can so as to improve their bottom line. Trying to be careful not to bash any products, since that is discouraged.
 
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Old 07-06-20, 08:10 AM
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>>Trying to be careful not to bash any products, since that is discouraged.<<
Just calling a spade a spade, but let me rephrase:
I would try all other brands that are on the shelf before I would use a DAP product.
 
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