After several years, the grout in the tile porch may look worn, get crumbled or get damaged. This is due to prolonged exposure to heat and moisture. However, other factors also play a role, such as the type of grout used, its consistency during installation, or the experience of the installer. Replace the crumbled or damaged grout to prolong the usability of the tile porch. Here’s how.
Tools and Materials
- Grout saw
- Sanded grout
- Rubber float
- Spray bottle
- Stiff brush
- Vacuum cleaner
- Damp cloth
Step 1 – Prep the Porch
Clean the surface of the porch especially if it is dirty and grimy. Wet the surface and brush it to remove any grime sticking onto the tiles. Wipe it off with a clean dry rag or cloth. Prepare all needed materials.
Step 2 – Remove the Old Grout
Use a grout saw to cut through the grouting material. Run the tool over every joint in between the tiles. This may require going over the same area until every last bit of the crumbled material has been removed. Be careful not to chip the tiles. Try not to touch the tiles with the blade of the tool. Use a vacuum cleaner to suck off the debris away from the joints. Use a stiff brush to remove any leftover debris inside the channels.
Step 3 – Mix the Grout
Mix the material with water in a bucket. Pay particular attention to the correct ratio of water and powder as instructed in the package. Use a trowel for mixing. The resulting consistency should be like that of mashed potatoes – not too thick and not too thin.
Step 4 – Apply the Mixture
Consider dividing the whole area into sections of 5x5 square foot if the entire surface area is wide. It is best to work one section at a time. Use the rubber float to press the mixture into the spaces in between the porch tiles. Press the float firmly so that the material will squeeze in and fill every gap without leaving any air spaces. Work the tool in organized one-directional strokes. A 45-degree angle is probably the best way to go. Do not worry if some of the grouting material smears the tiles.
Step 5 – Wipe Off Excess Grout
Leave the mixture to set for about 20 minutes. Wipe off the excess grout on the tiles with a damp cloth. Run the damp cloth onto the grouted channels as well to create slightly concave surfaces on the lines. Do not allow the cloth to remove too much though. Just a thin layer will do as long as it makes the surface smoother. Let the material cure for 24 hours.
Step 6 – Apply Sealant
Use a paint brush to apply the sealant over the grout lines according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This will keep the channels resistant to moisture damage, thus allowing the installation to last for several years to come. Leave the sealant to dry for about 24 hours before stepping onto the porch floor.