Laying ceramic tile can make any room a little classier. The best part about ceramic tile floors is that they are stylish, yet durable and easy to maintain. The most common problems with tile floors occur in and around the grout lines. These problems usually arise due to improper grout installation. This article explains the best way to install grout on the tile floor.
Wait Until the Tile Mortar is Dry
Some people make the mistake of grouting their tile before the thinset mortar is even completely dry. This can lead to serious problems if the tiles shift and create uneven grout lines. This is why it is best to be safe and wait at least 24 hours before you apply the grout.
Using the Right Grout
The best way to ensure you get a solid grout line is to use the right tools and techniques. You can buy premixed or powdered grout. Premixed grout is easier to use but it is much more expensive. It is really only practical when grouting a small area. If you do use a grout mix, make sure that you mix it well. It is best to use a power drill with a mixing attachment. It is also important that you keep the mix plenty moist throughout the process. Towards the end of using a batch of mix, you'll notice that the grout will start to dry out. If the grout is too dry, it will not be adhesive. Just add a little bit of water and remix it to avoid any problems.
Using a Grout Float and Sponges
One of the most important tools you will need is a grout float. The grout float is similar to a handheld trowel, except it has a soft bottom. Use the float to take large scoops of grout and spread it over the grout lines. The key is to be very liberal when it comes to applying the grout. Don't worry if the ground gets all over the tile, because you will be able to easily clean it off later with a wet sponge. Buy large grounding sponges from a home improvement store. Do not try to get away with using cheap household cleaning sponges. These are too porous and they will lead to problems when it comes to the final texture of the grout. It is also important that you have several sponges because they will be quickly clogged with grout and less effective. Keeping them clean will ensure that you leave behind smoother grout lines.
If you follow these steps, you will be able to enjoy ceramic tiles that will last for a very long time.