LESLIE: Alright. Now I’ve got Sharon on the line who is dealing with a grouting issue. What’s going on there?
SHARON: Well, I have grout in my kitchen, around tiles. They’re about 5-inch tiles or so and …
LESLIE: Are they counter tiles or backsplash?
SHARON: Countertop and backsplash. And the problem, Leslie, is just the flat countertop.
SHARON: Since it’s so old, I don’t know if it will seal correctly. It’s kind of stained and dirty and I was wondering the best way to clean it out. Would you have to chip it all out or can you clean it with something and then regrout it and reseal it? What can I do?
TOM: Yeah. Well, yes and yes. So, you can try cleaning it and what you might want to try is a grout stripper, not a grout cleaner. It’s a little more aggressive in terms of its ability to pull out stains. However, if that doesn’t work to your satisfaction, you can get a grout knife and – or a grout saw, I should say – and cut out the grout that’s there and then simply put in some new grout, which is a very easy home improvement project to do.
SHARON: OK. And then, how do you go about – once you put the grout in, how do you go about sealing it?
LESLIE: Well, you want to let it dry – cure – really well and before it actually cures, you want to clean the tile surface very well. You want to sponge away any of that clouding that you see from the grout because once that sets, you’ll never get it off of the tile. So really do a good job of cleaning off your tile. Let that grout properly cure and then you need to get a grout sealer and apply it.
And the best way is they sell these little applicators. They look almost like small squeezy bottles and they have a little, foam roller-top or a little nail-polish brush. And that helps you just apply it right to the grout. And then put that sealer on and that’ll really do a good job of helping you keep that grout looking clean for a while.
SHARON: OK. So do you have any suggestions on how to keep it looking good? I mean is the sealer going to keep all of that nasty stuff out or do you just kind of scrub it a little gently after you’ve sealed it, once it’s sealed?
TOM: Well, there’s two kinds of grout: there’s sand grout and epoxy grout. And if you use the epoxy grout, it’s a lot harder to install but it does stay stain-free a lot longer. So that’s another option for you, too.
SHARON: OK, OK. Very good. And I like your zippy hold music. It makes you want to do aerobics.
TOM: Alright. Well, we hope it’s a tune for you to work by.
SHARON: Yes, wonderful.
SHARON: Thank you so much for your help and have a wonderful day.
TOM: You’re very welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks again for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.