is grout sealer necessary?


  #1  
Old 07-25-03, 09:43 AM
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is grout sealer necessary?

Hi,

I just installed tile in a small, daily-use bathroom--floor, walls in tub surround, etc.--and used white grout (Custom). Some things that I read suggest using grout sealer to prevent stains, mildew, etc. I've also heard opinions that grout sealer is more of a gimmick to play on fears about stained grout and that it either doesn't work or is not necessary in most situations.

Would anyone be willing to share their professional opinion about this issue? I see that the cost of the stuff is up around 75$ for a gallon and I'll likely only need a pint or so. I don't mind spending the money and time on it if it works, but just wanted to see what others think about it before buying something that some pros seem to think is a waste of time and money.

Thanks!
 
  #2  
Old 07-25-03, 04:34 PM
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If it were my home I'd seal it.
 
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Old 07-26-03, 01:18 PM
floorman
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yea,ya know it does help retard the water and anything that may want to seep into the tile or grout,alot of sealers are the kind that sit on top and wear away over time,then there are penetrating sealers that seep into the grout or tile and last alot longer which is the type that costs $75 a bottle it is money well spent
 
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Old 07-30-03, 11:32 PM
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THANKS!

Gentlemen,

Thanks very much for getting back to me about this. Since the response is pretty much unanimous (with a sample size of 2), I'm giong to go ahead and get some of the sealer.

Currently, the grout has been drying for about 3 days. I'm going to wait until next week (Wednesday will be 10 days; I'm writing this on the Wednesday before) to seal. I finally found the contaners o the Tile Lab stuff in sizes smaller than a gallon (I think that they're a quart for about $30). I read over in the John Bridge forums that aquamix might be better than the high end Tile Lab stuff. Is this correct...should I track down the aquamix?

My plan is to get some cheap white towels and swab the stuff on 2-3 times over a series of 3 days.

I was wondering....does this type of sealer stain the existing tile? That is, I saw a "grout sealer applicator" which was a felt wheel to be attached to the top of an 8 oz container (you roll the wheel along a grout line a dispenses the sealer from the 8 oz reservoir). Personally, I prefer the rag method. But, if the sealer is going to put some yellow haze over my tile or grout (bright white), then I'll suck it up and figure out a way to do something else.

Thanks again!

==e
 

Last edited by newt123; 07-30-03 at 11:49 PM.
  #5  
Old 08-02-03, 03:45 AM
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Hey Newt......

Ref. the tile sealer applicator bottle........ I bought one and used it only a few times. Mine came with two hardened (ceramic or something) wheels. One, 1/4" and one, 1/8". Easily changeable.

The problem I had using that applicator is that when you roll the wheel and squeeze the bottle to get more "sealer", the stuff comes out all over the place and floods the entire tile area. Makes a pretty good mess to clean up.

If your applicator bottle came with a felt type wheel, that might work a lot better than the hard wheels mine came with.

Dave
 
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Old 08-02-03, 09:54 AM
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Floors are easy because gravity is working in your favor. Almost anything will work well. I prefer just a artist's paint brush and a cup. I'm still looking for the perfect answer for walls.
 
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Old 08-02-03, 02:17 PM
floorman
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read the back of the container,but most sealers now days are of the water based type and can be applied over the entire surface,others ,the chemical based sealers are the ones you need to "paint" the joints with
 
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Old 08-02-03, 07:01 PM
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Gee, guess I showed up in a nick of time. I've recommended the Aquamix product for years, and I still do. There is a better product; It's called Stone Armor.


The new breed of tile sealers are called "impregnators." They are water-base and settle just below the surface to form a semi-waterproof barrier there. They are vapor transmissible, though, and allow moisture the might get below the surface to evaporate. I must repeat that Stone Armor is the absolute best. Aquamix Sealer's Choice 15 Gold is right up there also. I'm afraid Tile Lab is down the list a bit.

===============

This post as been edit because ot its Advertisement content.

Advertisements in the forums is not allowed.
 

Last edited by Forums; 08-04-03 at 12:32 PM.
  #9  
Old 08-14-03, 10:38 AM
Peter Poon
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Applying sealer is not as easy as mentioned in the instructions. I've learned it the hard way. I used it to seal the back splash of my kitchen.

First of all the instruction said you should apply it and waite 2-3 minutes before wipping it off. The sealer dried in less than 1 minute and cannot be removed. The next section I was temped to wipe it off immediately with a damp cloth but was afraid that I will removed the sealer from the grout.

After it dried completely, it seems nothing can remove it. I tried water, alcohol, paint thinner. One thing I don't want to use is grout cleaner because of the fact that I have to rinse it with water later. The last thing I tried and it worked is that cleaner made from orange peel. But you need a lot of elbow grease.

My next project with the kitchen floor I will use a much smaller artist brush to carefully apply the sealer, and like someone said gravity will be on my side.

Thanks.
 
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Old 08-16-03, 05:10 PM
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It's not really an advertisement. We don't need the sale, and I recommend products made by other companies also. The point is that Tile Lab sealers made by Custom Building Products are not the best. I do recommend their thin set products, though.

Peter,

I think you will find in the directions that you should not allow the material to dry on the surface. If you work small areas at a time, you'll be fine. On a floor you can use a foam applicator and keep a damp rag or sponge handy to wipe the material off the edges of the tiles as you go. Using the artist brush becomes a bit tedious.
 
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Old 08-17-03, 02:43 AM
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How do the professional contractors apply grout sealer on very large areas? Certainly they don't use a small foam brush when having to seal an area 1000-2000 sq. ft. It's got to take forever.

On my 450 sq. ft. floor, it was tedious enough.

Dave
 
 

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