Dark grout stained my light travertine [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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06-29-2004, 08:10 AM
My tiler (who is new to natural stone) goofed a GORGEOUS job by applying redwood grout to unsealed honey-colored travertine. Tearing it all out and retiling is out of the question...neither I nor the tiler can afford the time or materials. Do I have to learn to live with a redwood bathroom or is there something we can do to minimize the damage? Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions. :bang:

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Steven Hauser
06-29-2004, 10:08 AM
It will be tough.

I don't know what redwod grout is though.

I guess that if you guys can stand to grind and hone the floor the color can be restored.

You do need a professional for this though.


06-29-2004, 01:29 PM
Redwood is just the color of the grout, and yeah we're considering sanding it down, but I was hoping there might be some chemical solution...laquer thinner? Hydrogen Peroxide? Ammonia?

Steven Hauser
06-29-2004, 02:08 PM
You can try the hydrogen peroxide get the 30-40 % volume at beauty supply stores.

It might work. I am not worried about the travertine though, it is the "fill" in the large cavities that are susceptible to stain.


06-29-2004, 02:33 PM
White vinegar will disolve grout. Maybe someone else will confirm this for you if it's alright to use with travertine. Try a little spot in a corner or something first.
You let it sit on the surface for a few minutes then scrub and wipe off with a sponge. ;)

06-29-2004, 06:14 PM
Hi Ortis, Welcome! :)

Please don't use the vinegar solution at this point. It will etch your stone. Follow Steven's suggestion.

Is your travertine honed or polished?

The dye has probably entered the fill, and will be very difficult to remove. Can you post a picture?

06-29-2004, 06:23 PM
We worked at restoring a durango stone with safari brown sanded grout several months ago. After attempting several chemical remedies (including some acids) we had the most success with grinding down the stone past the stain and repolishing. It would have been much easier if the grout had been nonsanded....

06-29-2004, 08:25 PM
I see that the fill has indeed taken on the reddish pigment much more than the stone has. I think I can learn to live with that, especially since my eye always saw the fill as being a dyed portion of the surface anyway--less natural-looking than the colors in the stone itself.

What is most upsetting to me at this point is the general red haze over everything, which kills all the white and cream and honey colored highlights. The range of tones is gone. It goes from medium redwood to dark redwood. If I could only get some of the highlights back, I think I could come out of mourning. I will try the salon-strength Hydrogen Peroxide. How long after grouting should I wait until I try these tricks? It's just been 36 hours. I don't want to destroy the grout.

BTW, the grout in some places is now showing signs of a whitish crystallization that doesn't scratch off? Anyone know what's going on there?

Thanks for all the thoughtful replies. I'd be perfectly despondent without this forum. Will try to post a pic tomorrow.

Maurizio Bertoli
06-29-2004, 10:51 PM
Dear Ortis:
I believe I answered this one from another forum, and a privatre follow-up, too.
For my money?... It's Hydrogen Peroxide first. That sould work. I would consider grinding, honing and polishing as the last resort. It's gonna be very costly and it will involve the replacement of the filler that will come off over the first cut! :( :(
As for the cyrstallazing of your grout (efflorescence) I have no idea. Is it possible that you have moisture under those tiles?
Ciao and good luck,