LESLIE: Grouting in Georgia, that’s what Kim’s doing. How can we help you?
KIM: Yes, we have some tile that was put down about a year ago. And our grout is coming up and I have little holes in it. And I was wanting to know can you grout over that?
TOM: Is it floor tile or a wall tile?
KIM: It’s floor tile.
LESLIE: That sounds like the subfloor is off kilter. Because that seems to be like there’s a lot of movement.
TOM: Yeah, the floor surface is moving. Is it over a wood floor? Was it installed over wood?
KIM: It was wood and then they put some backer board down.
KIM: But I think the person who installed it didn’t let it sit because he did it all in one day.
TOM: Well, that might not be the – it might not be that he didn’t let it sit but it definitely sounds like it doesn’t have any kind of a mud base to it. It’s basically – the reason you’re getting grout that’s breaking is because you have movement in the floor as you walk over it and stuff. So the grout is – basically, it doesn’t bend; it breaks.
LESLIE: I mean you’re lucky it’s not breaking the tiles.
TOM: Yeah. Are these …
TOM: … big, wide tiles or are they smaller tiles?
KIM: They’re the 12x12.
TOM: Well you’re lucky because tiles don’t bend. They crack. So you’re fortunate …
LESLIE: So the movement just seems to be really affecting grout …
LESLIE: … but it’s possible that it could affect the tile and start snapping things.
KIM: Oh, no.
TOM: I’ll give you a solution. Now, this may involve removing all of the grout. Well now, actually I’m going to back out. You know what I was thinking, Leslie? There is a – there’s a tile product that is called Edge Flooring and it’s sold in Lowe’s. And it’s basically tile on a fiberboard backer. And what’s cool about the system is that the grout that you put in, it comes in a can that looks like a Cheez Whiz can. So that when you squeeze …
LESLIE: Plus you squeeze it right in.
TOM: You squeeze it in there and it remains just a little bit flexible. But if I had a floor with a lot of movement, that would be a possible solution. But in this case, Kim, I suspect that the – that the floor was not prepped properly. This may be a problem that is like ongoing. And so the best short term solution for you is just to get some grout mix – hopefully find the same color – and continually patch it. Because I’m afraid that even if you do pull it out, it’s just going to happen again. You may just have to stay on top of it. Hopefully, it’s not a lot that’s coming out; just a little bit coming out.
KIM: I really appreciate your answer.
TOM: Alright, Kim. Good luck with that project and thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.