Whether replacing an old, cracked tile, or simply re-grouting your bathroom floor for aesthetic purposes, tile and grout replacement is an excellent beginners project. Tile and grout replacement is also a fabulous way to save money on home repairs, as a do-it-yourself job is not only affordable, but relatively simple as well!
The first step in tile and grout replacement is quite obvious. You must first replace any broken or loose tiles before re-grouting any surface. To remove these damaged tiles complete the following steps:
1.) Use a grout saw to remove any grout around the tile. Scrape the grout out carefully, and with precision. Next, in order to get under the broken or loose tile, break it up with a hammer. Once broken, get under the broken pieces with a cold chisel and begin breaking away the damaged tile.
2.) Use your chisel or other tool (such as a putty knife) to remove all loose pieces of tile, and scrape the surface (preferably with a paint scraper) to remove any remaining adhesive.
3.) Once clean and level, wipe the surface clean and make sure the area is completely dry. Spread a thin amount of tile adhesive on the back of your replacement tile and scrape off any adhesive that is within ¼ of an inch of the perimeter of the tile. Any adhesive that is within this area of the tile will fill the grout joint, and this is NOT something you want to happen!
4.) Position the tile carefully, and press into place. Make sure your tile is level with the surrounding tiles and allow it to set overnight to insure adequate drying. Do not re-grout your tile until it is completely dry.
Grouting your Tile
Once you have completed the first steps of tile replacement, its time to venture into replacing the grout. Tile and grout replacement is a fairly simple procedure, but does require adequate drying time, so do not rush this project. Also, please consider the possibility that your grout (and ultimately tile) damage is the result of something more serious, such as a water leak near the shower or toilet. Hopefully, the damage to your grout is simply wear and tear, and the following steps will do the trick:
1.) If your project only entailed a small surface area, (such as one or two tiles), you wont need much of anything except grout, your fingertip and a soft cloth to wipe away excess. Mix the grout according to package directions, and spread evenly into the grout joint, wiping away excess grout from the tile once it has dried.
2.) If dealing with a larger project, such as all of the grout on your tiled surface, consider investing in a tool specifically designed for grout removal. Tools for manual grout removal are available if you are either handling a small area, or simply do not want to invest in a more expensive item. Use your tool of choice to remove all grout on your surface, and vacuum the area to remove all grout particles.
3.) Mix your grout according to package directions, and using a rubber or wooden trowel, force the grout into the grout channels, and wipe the area with a damp sponge as it begins to set and dry.
4.) Allow your grout to dry at least overnight before allowing any foot traffic.
Do-it-yourself tile and grout replacement is an inexpensive alternative to hiring a professional. Make an old space look like new, and save a few dollars in the process.