Help! Grout on tumbled tile

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  #1  
Old 05-13-04, 06:28 AM
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lilredcorvette
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Help! Grout on tumbled tile

I've just been through the most horrific experience. My cousin (who told me he'd done hundreds of bathroom renos) renovated my bathroom and it's going to cost me THOUSANDS of dollars to fix it. Everything he did was wrong - including not plugging the drains when he tore down the walls so I had about 100 lbs of concrete stuck in my drainage system...cost me a couple of grand to fix. It's a horrific situation.

One thing he did was grout my tumbled tile and then walk away from it, not wiping it off. I now have grout settled on this really expensive tile. It's tumbled and rustic so it's not flat, there are so many crevaces where there's a layer - up to 1/4 inch) of grout, bonded to my tile.

Is there anything I can do to get this grout off? The tile cost me $2000, I'd like to salvage it. I bought a grout haze remover and it didn't do anything. Someone recommended a light acid with a nylon brush.

Can anyone help me and recommend something?

Thanks in advance!!!
 
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  #2  
Old 05-13-04, 03:23 PM
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I think at this point, you may have to use a razor scraper to remove the heavy areas of grout. Acid isn't a good idea...it will eat the surface of the marble. You should of course do a test area first ..but this is what you are looking for: http://www.cornerhardware.com/item_2...-Stripper.html

The pits and crevases in the marble should be filled with the grout anyway, so if you can get them flush with the surface it will look better. The scraper will scratch the surface of the marble so work away at it slowly....but since it has a matte finish they won't be too noticable....and the marble should have a coat of sealer on it also...this will also hide some of the scratchs. Again, you'll have to try and see what happens....do a small area just get an idea. Too bad you can't post a picture here...or can you?
 
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Old 05-13-04, 11:08 PM
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Grout on tile

Dried grout on tile is next to impossible to remove. You are talking about dried 'concrete.' A grout release product should have been used prior to grouting and wet grout should have been wiped off before it dried.

Lots of water and use of wood sticks to force grout off tile may be helpful. Plastic scrapers or scrubbies may also be helpful. Again, you are dealing with dried concrete, thus removable tends to be next to impossible.
 
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Old 05-14-04, 03:40 PM
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lilredcorvette
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Angry Here you go...

Here are some pics I took of the bathroom. I still feel like crying when I look at them.

http://photos.yahoo.com/lilredcorvettenyc
 
  #5  
Old 05-14-04, 04:04 PM
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Hi

Well....where to start? First off...you should remove your cousin from your Christmas card list. The grout isn't as bad as I thought it would be...but that could be the least of the problems. I noticed that behind the tile in the shower was green board..or water resistant drywall. It's not any good at all, and will probably only last a few years before it gets wet and causes a failure. And judging from the quality of the installation(including the tube of caulking in the corners) it will probably fall apart even sooner. The area outside the shower is ok with the green board...but in the shower it needs to be a cement board type product with thin set as the adhesive...not premixed mastic. Is there a waterproof liner under the sloped motar bed in the shower floor? ...and that looks like slate, which is easier to clean than marble. You might want to try SULFAMIC acid crystals.....it's acid that is in crytal form...it comes in a small jar that you mix in water. It will only desolve to a certian strength, so you can't mix it too strong. You can get it in the tile section of HOme Depot. IF you try it, you must first do a test on a spare peice of the tile...apply it and give it a scrub...and see what happens. You won't want to try it in the bath first...use a spare peice of tile. It's acid and acid on natural stone is not a good thing to do, but you may not have a choice if you want to remove the grout . Better yet, make your cousin do it.
 
  #6  
Old 05-15-04, 01:42 PM
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floorman
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Sorry to see that ,it's things like that ,that make it harder for guys like me to make a living,or maybe it's cause of guys like him that keep me working i'm not real sure which but needless to say i think you may be better ripping this out and starting over.It makes me want to cry as well .

I'd have to agree with my friend in the previous post and say that this may not last long at all with the cracks already forming and the out of place tile,and did he cut tile around the drain or did he just lay full tile around it and grout it?

You can try the sulfamic acid on this tumbled stone cause at this point if the acid eats the stone you won't be out much more than you already are gonna be or are for that matter,worst case is you would be tearing it out and redoing it,not too bad a thought after seeing what i saw.

It's a shame that there are people running around out there that willl mislead people this way and end up costing them three time swhat it would have cost to do it right the first time.Please let us know how you make out on this will ya?
 
  #7  
Old 05-15-04, 03:57 PM
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lilredcorvette
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Update

My realtor (did I mention that I *just* bought this house?) hooked me up with someone to fix the major problems, at least in the short term. He ripped up my shower floor and 1 tile up from the floor, he thought that needed the most serious attention. With the floor up, he saw that my cousin put down some plywood and tiled over it and used some 'adhesive' that he couldn't even recognize. He spooned some up to show me, it was like a white silly putty and still wasn't dry, one week after it was tiled. Dave (the fixer) said that it was probably never going to dry, which is why the grout cracked on the wall - the tiles were just falling. So he ripped up the floor and put down some concrete with mesh and then some thinset and then tiled it. He's coming back tomorrow to grout it so I can finally shower on Monday. He explained that this is a short term solution, until I can afford to get it redone properly.

My entire floor needs to be redone too. There's just a layer of plywood on 6 inch beams with tile on it, that grout started to crack almost immediately. Dave's going to rip that up too and put down cement board.

He's also going to re-grout my shower, and use sanded grout and not the non-sanded my cousin used.

Question: by ripping down the tile in the shower wall, will it all be ruined? Will I have to buy all new tile? I asked b/c it's such expensive tile, I'd like to salvage it if I could.

I left a voicemail on my cousin's phone telling him how much anguish and $$ he's costing me, of course I haven't heard from him.

Please keep sending good advice and karma...I need it so badly right now!!
 
  #8  
Old 05-15-04, 04:18 PM
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Hi

I do have some good news for you. Your cousin used Mastic(the white putty substance) and it will come off with water. So, if you want to salvage the tile you remove, you can. Just put all the tile into something that will hold water(laundy tub, pails.etc etc) and let them soak for a few days. The mastic will fall right off.

Your shower floor really needs a waterproof liner in it....either under the mortar bed, or on top of the motar bed. Your new tiler is correct...without it, his fix is just a short term solution. Keep us posted. And in case your interested, this is how the floor should be contructed.

http://www.ontariotile.com/showerfloormud1.html
 
  #9  
Old 05-16-04, 05:02 AM
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floorman
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Sounds like you found you someone who can fix the problem a little after the fact but a tleast you have him now.Don't loose this guys number and if he treats you right give it to everyone you know.The value of a good floorman is priceless as you are about to find out.

Good luck to ya red and let us know how things turn out will ya
 
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