Putting in a new tile or stone floor is not cheap, between the purchase of the tile and labor you are likely spending a lot of money. It makes sense you would want to protect your investment as good as possible so you me be wondering do you have to seal grout?
Grout is very porous so liquid spilled will be soaked up by the grout like a sponge and cause it to stain. Now there are grouts that are stain proof and stain resistant and if you want to fork out the extra money for them then by all means go for it. For the sake of this article we will be talking about regular sanded or non sanded grout.
Why Do You Need To Seal Grout?
Grout is basically made up of sand, cement and water mixed together. Once the grout dries it is very porous and will suck up and hold any fluids spilled. Along with the fluids spilled it will absorb bacteria and stains leaving your dirty and blemished.
When you seal your grout you are causing your grout to become water resistant, and instead of absorbing spills it will repel moisture.
Grout sealer will also extend the life of your grouts appearance and will also resist the growth of any mildew or mold.
When Should You Apply The Sealer?
Before you apply the sealer you need to allow the grout to fully dry and cure. This process will usually take 48-72 hours and it is crucial you do not skip this step. Inspect your grout and make sure it is dry, clean, and free of any blemishes before proceeding.
If all these criteria are met then your good to proceed.
This is where you need to be careful, remember you are only sealing the grout unless you have a stone floor. So lets just assume you have just installed a porcelain tile floor and you are only going to need to seal the grout as porcelain tile cannot be sealed.
Do not spend a ton of money on the sealer, they will likely try to sell you some fancy expensive sealer but you do not need it since you are only sealing the grout. We really like Miracle’s 511 Impregnator Sealer for grout, it is inexpensive and will deliver long-lasting performance you are sure to be happy with.
There other sealers that will work too just stay away from the expensive enhancers and things like that it, it is a waste of money for what you need it for.
Can I Apply The Sealer Myself?
It is 100% something you can do yourself with zero experience and minimal tools. As a matter of fact we usually tell our customers when they ask us to seal their floors that we will gladly do it for them but that they could save money just doing it themselves.
- Small Bucket
- Terry Towels
- Knee Pads
You being by putting on your gloves and pouring the sealer into the small bucket. Place a terry towel into the bucket to soak up some sealer and then apply to the grout lines only, you will get some on the tile but don’t freak out. Do a section no bigger than 100ft at time and allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes. The grout will soak it up almost immediately.
After you have waited 5-10 minutes get a larger towel or some of your dry terry towels and clean all excess sealer off your tile, do not let it dry fully on the tile. If it is allowed to dry it will leave what looks like water spots or streaks on your tile.
Repeat this process until the whole floor has been done. If you want to really go overboard you can even add a second coat of the sealer but we do not feel this is necessary with grout only.
Another option is a product on the market called Grout Shield that you mix into the grout instead of water. One jug of this product is good for 1 25lb bag of grout. You apply the grout the same way and then wipe clean with water. This seals your grout from top to bottom without having to come back and seal later.
Protect Your Investment
A home improvement project like new tile floors is an expensive investment to make. If you are going to spend the money to make your floors amazing then why not spend just a little more to protect it long term.
Grout is the one thing about tile that people dislike saying it gets dirty easy and is hard to clean. Adding a sealer to the grout solves that problem and keeps your grout dirt, stain, moisture, bacteria and mildew free.
So don’t cut corners here as we have show you it is possible to do it yourself fairly easily so all you really need to buy is the sealer itself and your grout will remain looking nice for years to come.