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Old 05-20-2003, 11:32 AM   #1
BarbFreda
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Question Grout question and Backsplash EDGING question

First is about my black grout...it's only dark gray...I'm awaiting the cleaner I ordered here and hoping it's just some haze left over, but should I color it if it doesn't get blacker (I grouted last Thursday.)...As soon as I clean it, I'll be sealing it with the Aquamix low sheen sealant.

Second is about the backsplash--I'm looking for recommendations on how to finish two vertical edges, each about 16 to 18 inches tall. There is 1/4-inch backer board covering the backsplash space--neither of the ends butts up against a wall, so I have to finish them somehow. After I add the tile, the backsplash will be anywhere from 1/2 to almost 5/8's inches thick (I haven't picked the tile yet)...What can I do to the ends? I won't use the metal. I am considering tumbled stone. I could cut tiles to finish or I could use some leftover cherry trim strips...any other ideas/suggestions...Any comments on tiles?

In the meantime, I have plenty to keep me busy--finishing the ceiling paint, installing a wallpaper border, installing quarter round (yuk)...but I need to turn my sights to this backsplash...
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Old 05-20-2003, 12:00 PM   #2
doitright
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Hi Barb!

Grout: It could be that some of the pigment was removed while washing the grout (common problem depending on tecnique). It's been suggested here to try a vinegar & water solution to expose fresh grout. Is it black or acceptable when wet? After cleaning try a small sample area with your enhancer. If the results aren't acceptable, don't seal the grout. Otherwise you won't be able to use a grout colorant, without stripping the sealer 1st.

Edging: I commonly make my own trim from the tumbled marble.
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Old 05-20-2003, 04:30 PM   #3
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I'll bet John's right. Scratch the surface of a grout joint. Bet you find darker grout underneath.

Our cleaner won't do that job. You will need something acidic, and white vinigar is the first step. It should not harm the slate. Try it on a scrap, though, just to be safe.
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Old 05-21-2003, 01:47 AM   #4
Art in Stone
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Use the tumbled stone for backsplash, put some inserts of the granite in there, and finish with the wood.
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Old 05-21-2003, 03:54 AM   #5
BarbFreda
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The grout is def. black when wet--

I'll try the vinegar and the colorant, then I'll seal it. And I won't seal the slate until I resolve the grout problem

Doitright, can you elaborate on what I might have done to remove the pigment when washing? Just curious (yeah, right, for the NEXT slate counter I do...no, really, as I said elsewhere I'm eying the bathroom floor, so if I can learn from mistakes...)

Thanks.

B
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Old 05-21-2003, 08:29 PM   #6
doitright
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Hi Barb,

1st try cleaning the grout. Don't use grout colorant, then sealer. It's not necessary. Clean the grout, let dry, then sample a small area with your Aqua Mix low sheen sealer. If this is satisfactory, seal the grout and slate together.

As far as the pigment removal: It's better if you tell us what your grout consistancy was while grouting? How much did you let the grout set up before washing? How wet was your sponge during cleanup? These are all factors. When we have the answers to these questions, we can help with suggestions for the future.

What did you decide on the backsplash?
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Old 05-22-2003, 05:04 AM   #7
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Thanks, doitright...the grout probably set up at least 10 min. after application, probably a bit longer. I kept my sponge as dry as possible, although I did go over it several times, in an effort to keep my buffing work to a minimum.

The grout was thick. I followed the measurements as instructed on the carton; let sit 10 min, then mixed again. Then I used it...It was easy to work with and a lovely, shiny black when it was wet.

Glad you're saying I (hopefully) don't need to color it...I'll give it a sealant test and let you guys know the results...I've cleaned a few lines with the vin/water solution...some improvement,, but still not BLACK black...
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Old 05-22-2003, 04:38 PM   #8
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Repeat. I think you need to clean the surface. I don't think you washed the color out. I think it's either efflorescense or latex migration. In either case, it's on the surface. I don't know how to get it off in a stone application. Can we use acid?
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Old 05-23-2003, 05:05 AM   #9
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John, I did try vinegar/water solution with a soft toothbrush. Black when wet, gray when dry. I also tried Aquamix's grout cleaner--same story.

I thought efflourescence would look more powdery, less evenly spread. There are no concentrations of the gray--it's very evenly colored...

Still trying...also, what's approx. deliv. time on that cleaner??? I eagerly await it!

B
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Old 05-23-2003, 06:11 AM   #10
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Barb,

There will be no cleaners, that I'm aware of that will cure this. As far as the vinegar solution, that is only mildly acidic. If you want to experiment with something stronger to break the top layer of grout, you'll need to have access to a masonry supply store, and procure one of the recommended stone cleaners. Prosoco's Surekleen Detergent 600 is excellent, but must be properly diluted! It won't harm the slate. IF that's NOT AVAILABLE muriatic acid might have to do (I didn't say that!) Dilute at least 10-15 parts water to 1 part muriatic. Prewet the surface, and test in the most inconspicuous spot you have. Rinse, Rinse, Rinse, and let dry. This stuff, if you apply strong enough, rub long enough, apply enough repeatedly, will literally remove your grout! Also USE SAFETY PROTECTION, such as Eye goggles, and Rubber Gloves!

Hope this helps! Did you try the enhancer yet? Did your leftover grout turn black, black?
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Old 05-23-2003, 06:30 AM   #11
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No, the cleaner won't do it. I would try to find the SureClean. I will not recommend you use muriatic. That stuff can mess up a lot of things including your clothes.

You could paint the joints with grout stain to make them darker.
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Old 05-23-2003, 07:18 AM   #12
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Sure Kleen 600 detergent is available at masonry supply houses Barb.(cement block/brick/misc )Its been very helpful in situations such as yours.Ive used it for many years. Todd
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Old 05-23-2003, 07:25 AM   #13
KChurch1
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Have you thought about using an enhancer sealer? We have used Stone Tech Enhancer Pro impregnator sealer to darken black grout with success... it will also bring out the color in the stone... give the slate a "wet" look and protect against staining at the same time. Plus, you don't have to strip it off like you will topical treatments...
Something to think about
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Old 05-23-2003, 07:38 AM   #14
BarbFreda
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Thanks, all.

I won't go for muriatic acid; I think I will color it black then seal it and leave it at that..

Karen, with the slate, I have a pretty matte finish that I intend to keep, so I won't go the wet look route.

I'm going to one of Louisville's biggest tile supply stores later this morning (still searching for JUST the right backsplash)--I'll talk to them, too and let you all know what I end up doing (coloring it sounds easier than anything, frankly).

B

Ps. John, I do understand that the stone cleaner won't work for this; I'm just eager to use the stuff on the entire counter!
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Old 05-24-2003, 12:08 AM   #15
Art in Stone
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Do any of you guys ever try lemon juice? It works, especially on some more delicate stones.
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