Fixing Cracked Grout in a Kitchen Countertop
LESLIE: Carol in Nebraska finds The Money Pit at KFOR and you’ve tiled the countertop yourself. Well done!
CAROL: Thank you. Actually, I can’t compare it (ph) with my husband but …
TOM: (chuckling) Okay.
CAROL: … it’s a beautiful, beautiful job and I couldn’t be more pleased. It was just easier than we thought and cheaper than we thought and just the greatest. And we couldn’t have done it without your help.
TOM: That’s great to hear because we’re always advocating people do these jobs themselves. And I think tile is something that people are afraid of tackling but it’s really not that hard to do. I always say if you can put a puzzle together, you can do tile.
LESLIE: Yeah, and with innovations on like wet (ph) tile cutter’s blades, where you can accidentally run your finger across certain ones and they won’t cut you. I think people are feeling more capable. So good for you.
CAROL: It’s … and we did it over a laminate, which people said – some people said you could, some people said you couldn’t. We went ahead and did it and it worked great.
CAROL: So you don’t even have to pull that out. It just was fabulous. Our only problem is – because, of course, there would be one little problem (laughing) …
LESLIE: Of course.
CAROL: The bull nose that we ran along the edge – right above the dishwasher – there’s a very fine line crack in the grout. And we were wondering if it’s somehow heat related from the heat escaping from the dishwasher and … or is it when we reset the new sink in, did we maybe put so much pressure on that it created that crack? And, mainly, what should we do?
TOM: Well, it is a good point that there’s heat above the dishwasher. You get steam that comes out there and you could have, potentially, a little more expansion and contraction going on there as well that the grout’s not very elastic.
TOM: If it’s just a fine line I wouldn’t worry about it. By the way, did you seal that grout after you put it down?
CAROL: We didn’t because we were told we didn’t have to.
LESLIE: Yeah, but if you seal it, it won’t stain as easily and it will last longer.
CAROL: Okay. So … and it’s not … we just finished it, maybe, a month ago; so it’s not too late to seal it?
TOM: No, no. Do it now before you … before you get it pretty dirty.
TOM: Yeah, if you …
LESLIE: And get the applicator; it’s like a little squeezie bottle that has almost like … either a roller tip or like a nail polish brush on it …
LESLIE: … because it really allows you to get in there really neatly and put it exactly where it needs to go; which is on the grout, not the tile.
CAROL: Okay. And that … and so that’s just … you look for grout sealer?
LESLIE: It’s right in the tiling section; you cannot miss it.
CAROL: Okay. And then would that probably help the next time? Because we’ll probably end up … we seem to be increasing a little bit (audio gap) crack. So we may end up pulling this up and redoing that section.
TOM: Well, what you want to do is get a grout saw – which is like a little tool that is designed to scrape grout out – and scrape the grout out. And it’s good that it’s still pretty new because you don’t have to worry about a color issue. And you could mix up a little bit of grout and then regrout that and then seal it all together at the same time. And hopefully, that will stand up the next time and it won’t shrink again.
CAROL: So the grout saw …?
TOM: A great saw, right.
CAROL: … and the sealer with the little nail polish thing?
TOM: There you go. On your way.
CAROL: (overlapping) Thank you so much.
TOM: Okay, you’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 1-888-MONEY-PIT end_of_the_skype_highlighting. It’s so rewarding to hear that people are tackling the home improvement projects that we recommend and they’re coming out great.
LESLIE: Yeah, and tiling a countertop … it’s just … it’s so surprisingly simple – just like Carol said – and you really can have just a beautiful and original countertop that’s all your own. So don’t be afraid of it.
TOM: Tackle it. 1-888-MONEY-PIT begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 1-888-MONEY-PIT end_of_the_skype_highlighting. Let us show you how. Call us now.