Grout stained the tile

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  #1  
Old 08-01-01, 05:01 PM
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I just began putting a dark, sanded grout on my nicely laid out kitchen tile floor. And it is staining the tiles. They are 8"x8" light-colored glazed ceramic tiles, and I really didn't expect any problems. But there you go.

It appears that if I clean the grout up right away, the staining is less, but the tiles have even been stained by drops of dirty water from the bucket I used for my grout-clean-up-sponge.

HELP! Does anybody know if there is a way to clean up these grout stains?

I suppose I could replace the worst tiles, and then seal the rest before I grout, but then why did I buy GLAZED tiles, if they need to be sealed???

Thanks,
christian
 
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  #2  
Old 08-02-01, 05:37 PM
J
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Hi Christian,

First of all, don't panic. We'll get to the bottom of this, maybe.

All glazed tiles are not the same. Some are softer than others and cause the grout to dry rather rapidly.

If you don't have any actual deposits of grout on the floor, you can probably remove the blotches with grout cleaner, obtainable from a tile supply store.

Start with that, and see how it works.

John
 
  #3  
Old 08-03-01, 07:20 AM
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Hi John, thanks for the reply.

Well, the panic was first, of course. But at least I'd only completed about 15% of the floor.

Secondly I ran to the HW store and bought everything they had for tile cleaning. I tried first with a "Heavy-Duty" Cleaner & Stripper, which is supposed to remove light grout haze. It did help somewhat, but not on the really blotchy tiles. So I resorted to a Sulfamic Acid cleaner, which takes about 90% of the stain off.

I called the tile supplier, who was surprised that it was happening. Even so, these tiles have a "satin"-like finish--not a smooth, glassy one. And he told me the grout pigment is just *so* fine, like talcum powder, that maybe it will happen. "Wipe the grout off quickly," he said.

I put a sealer on the rest of the tiles, just to see if it would help, and did another 15% of the floor last night. We wiped off all the extra grout and haze IMMEDIATELY (a lot of work with dark grout) and it still left some pigment stains on the tile. These stains aren't as bad as the first time, though, when I had let the haze dry for 30 or so minutes. I just wish I could figure out how to avoid it happening in the first place.

Anyway, I think today I'm going to try a grout bag, hoping to seriously limit the mess. It can't be *that* much slower than wiping off as we go, I think...

I can't believe that, in my research for doing this project, I saw no warnings about dark grout staining light glazed tile. The top ten lists of mistakes people make don't say a thing about this possibility, and the grout packaging doesn't have so much as a word about testing for compatability with the tile. Grrrrrr. >:-(

Any other thoughts?

Thanks,
christian
 
  #4  
Old 08-03-01, 01:19 PM
J
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To tell you the truth, I haven't heard of anyone having the problem lately. I can't imagine what kind of tile you have. If it's porous, though, the glaze is probably a little soft. I would make a point of keeping it sealed on a peremanent basis.

Try grout release prior to grouting, and move around as little as possible on the grout (don't grind it in with your shoes and knee pads). The way to do it is in about three foot swaths that you can reach without actually getting on it.

John

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