Remove Excess Grout from Tile
LESLIE: Pat in Oklahoma has a question about bathroom flooring. What can we help you with?
PAT: Yes, I have inherited a tile job on my daughter’s bathroom and …
LESLIE: (chuckling) OK.
TOM: You inherited it, huh?
TOM: You could have inherited some money but no; he inherited the tile job. (chuckling)
PAT: Yeah, you win some; you lose some. (Leslie chuckles)
TOM: Alright. How can we help, Pat?
PAT: Well, this floor and – it’s both a floor and a shower …
PAT: … grouted about one to two months ago.
PAT: And some of – the grout wasn’t cleaned off of the tile very good. Now the grout lines look good. But it’s six-inch porcelain tile and it’s kind of rough and has some indentations in it and it has some grout in those indentations and just trying to figure out an easy way to clean off the excess grout without ruining the grout line.
TOM: I have never had a lot of success taking dried grout off, have you Leslie?
LESLIE: No. I mean especially at this stage. You know, at one point, if it were just the clouding or the hazing, that’s fixable.
LESLIE: But at this point, you know, it’s pretty on there.
TOM: It’s got a porcelain finish to it?
PAT: It’s actually porcelain tile.
TOM: Well, you might be able to buff some of it out if you used a buffing wheel and some very, very fine abrasive.
TOM: That’s the only idea I have. I’m thinking of the type of abrasive that you use on a car finish. Rubbing compound.
PAT: Yep. OK.
LESLIE: It might be gritty enough.
TOM: Yeah, it might just be gritty enough. I don’t want to use too much and, you know, I would try it very, very slowly. If it’s nice in the joints of the tile itself, then you can leave it alone. If it’s too much in the joints there’s a grout saw that’s available to take excess grout out of the joints in the tile.
PAT: Really? OK.
TOM: And so, if the joints are a little bit sloppy you could use a grout saw to try to pull some of that out. But if it’s the tile surface itself, you might want to try to buff that out; perhaps with some rubbing compound and a buffing wheel.
PAT: OK. I hadn’t thought about rubbing compound.
TOM: Give it a try. Might work.
LESLIE: It’s worth a shot.
TOM: If it doesn’t work, don’t call us back, OK? (Tom and Leslie laugh)
PAT: I appreciate it. Thank you very much.