Grouting the Space Between Tiles on Floors

After the painstaking job of cutting, fitting, and setting ceramic tile, all that's left is grouting the space between tiles on floors you've proudly installed yourself. Read on to find out all about this piece de resistance of the ceramic tile job and know your masterpiece is almost complete!

You'll need to wait at least a day before grouting the space between tiles on floors to give plenty of time for the adhesive to work its magic. Nothing could be more disheartening as to begin the process only to have those expensive tiles you've so carefully and meticulously laid slipping and sliding around as you work. Even very slight movement can totally throw off your measurements and cause the lines between tiles to shift with some being thicker than others or possibly even cause tiles to butt up against one another at the end of a row.

Go With What the Pros Use

The product used for grouting the space between tiles on floors comes in two different forms: One is pre-mixed and ready to spread, and usually comes in a small bucket-type container. The other comes dry in a large bag. This type of grout has to be mixed with water to the proper consistency.

Many people new to the art of grouting tile assume the first type, the pre-mixed grout, is the better purchase. After all, professionals who presumably know what they're doing have already mixed it for you, plus, you reason, it's more expensive than the dry kind you have to mix yourself. (If it costs more, it must be better, right?)

Don't let the old perceived value trick throw you off when grouting the space between tiles on floors! Professionals know that pre-mixed grout comes too thin and watery for most jobs and so, instead, invariably go with the type of grout one has to mix one's self.

Properly grouting the space between tiles on floors involves correctly mixing the grout to the proper consistency. This rules as one of the most important nuggets of knowledge to those wishing to properly grout ceramic tile. The best way to learn how to do this is to watch a professional. In lieu of this (most people don't have this option!), know that the secret lies in not mixing it too wet; nor too dry! It must be somewhere close to the neighborhood of being wet enough to apply with a float, yet dry enough to not drip or fall off the float during application.

It's All in the Tool, the Timing, and the Angle

The next big secret to grouting the space between tiles on floors lies in application technique. Using a float, hold it at a 40-degree angle to ensure complete coverage and to be able to get the grout securely in between the tile joints.

Work quickly and in small sections, say, an area of two square feet. This allows you to go over the area in which you've grouted with a damp sponge to clean off any grout that has oozed from between the tiles or that you've inadvertently splattered on it before it's had a chance to harden. Removing hardened grout can be difficult in addition to increasing the risk of breaking or chipping tiles.

So that's it in a nutshell: Mix the grout correctly and spread it properly. Sounds easy, right? Grouting the space between tiles on floors IS easy, once you know what you're doing. With that said, go for it! Grout that tile! You can do it.

See Also:

How to Clean Grout