LESLIE: Next up, we’re going to take a call from Tom in Florida who has a tiling situation. He needs to replace some tiles but how do you match the grout.
Tom, what can we do for you?
TOM IN FLORIDA: I have cracked floor tiles.
TOM IN FLORIDA: And although I know what to do about the ceramic floor tiles – I have to take them up and I have to patch the floor underneath – my problem is once I do that, how am I ever going to match the color of the grout.
TOM: That’s a tricky one. That is a big – that’s a tricky one. Do you have the original grout, by any chance?
TOM IN FLORIDA: No, I do not. All I have is the original tiles.
LESLIE: And what color is the grout that’s currently there?
TOM IN FLORIDA: It’s kind of a gray color with maybe a touch of brown in it. It’s very hard to describe.
TOM: Now Leslie, here’s an idea. You know a little bit about dying concrete.
LESLIE: Yeah. They make a concrete tint which comes in like a powdered form or a liquid form. You can get it in your home improvement center in the concrete and in the paint aisle even. And maybe what you do is you match the gray and then add a brown or a black to it to give it the aged feeling. Because as grout ages, it holds onto that dirt; so it’s going to really keep whatever color that it’s grown to over the years and it’s going to stay that way. No cleaning will get you back to the original color.
TOM IN FLORIDA: That’s true. OK, so I wouldn’t want to put the original color down anyway because it would be faded.
LESLIE: Yeah, it would be …
TOM IN FLORIDA: Or some sort of a different color.
TOM: Well, my thought was that you get as close as you can and I was wondering kind of to myself whether or not you could dye all of the grout on the whole floor – say a slightly darker color – so now it all matches perfectly; even the dirty stuff, the new stuff; you know, make it all the same color. Because you can dye concrete. Why couldn’t you dye grout?
LESLIE: Yeah, but when you dye concrete, isn’t that done in the pre-installation phase while it’s still wet and you’re pouring it?
TOM: Yeah, but they have liquid concrete dyes that can be applied after the sidewalk hardens or after the patio hardens, so that’s what I was thinking about.
LESLIE: Hmm, those are two options, two ideas.
TOM: Yeah, see that? Well, there you go. There’s two more options than you had before you called. (Leslie chuckles)
TOM IN FLORIDA: That’s true.
TOM: I’d quit while you were ahead if I were you. (chuckles), OK, Tom?
TOM IN FLORIDA: OK, thanks a lot.
TOM: Alright, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.