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Old 07-12-2010, 10:51 AM   #1
junky99
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Tile/Grout Job Gone Wrong?!?

Hi everyone....

What went wrong with this tile/grout job? From the picture, you can see the grout through the edges of the glass tiles. Is it supposed to look like this?

What are my options to fix or does it even need fixing?? Looking for some advice... Thanks.
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Old 07-12-2010, 12:53 PM   #2
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Matt, I'm just guessing, but it looks like the thinset was combed onto the wall, but not flattened before the tiles were set. It needs to be fixed if you don't like the look. I know I'm not crazy about it, and I would not be happy with my installer if I were paying for it.

You did say this was after grout? It looks like gray grout and white thinset. You probably wouldn't be seeing this if the grout was white.
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Old 07-12-2010, 01:48 PM   #3
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I'm not too familiar with this problem but out of curiosity, you mention this might not have happened with white grout, could it have also been avoided if he used gray thinset?
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Old 07-13-2010, 04:32 AM   #4
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I dunno. If the thinset and grout matched, then there would be no changes in colors due to the thinset/grout interface at the bottom of the tile. Besides, I was just groping for a solution. Let's hope Matt comes back to talk about what happened.
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:01 AM   #5
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UDPATE:

So... I talked to the tile manufacturer and they said that because I used white mastic and grey grout that is the outcome. I should have used either gray mastic or white grout. The colors have to be the same!! Well... I guess that is an expensive lesson learned.

No way to fix, so I have to tear it all down, drywall and all! Really not looking forward to it, but it's gotta be done. Maybe this time around I'll go with granite or stainless steel tile. Thanks for all the replies. Wish me luck!!
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:04 AM   #6
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I don't suppose you could re-grout it with white grout?
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:44 AM   #7
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I tried removing some of the grout, it was fairly easy since it was so new, but it would be an absolute pain trying to get it off every 1x1 tile. Plus, we aren't fond of white grout.... so... i'm choosing the lesser of two evils!! ha!
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:12 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt
So... I talked to the tile manufacturer and they said that because I used white mastic and grey grout that is the outcome. I should have used either gray mastic or white grout. The colors have to be the same!!
I can't believe that the manufacturer said mastic was O.K. Seems most glass manufacturers want some specialized highly modified thinset.

Checking CPB data sheet for their "thinset in a bucket" says not for use with glass tile. Mapei's Ker909 doesn't exclude glass specifically but doesn't include it either. (It oes exclude natural stone.)

I think if I were going to the trouble of redoing the entire installation I would see if the glass tile you are using would be a candidate for the Laticrete "one-step" method.

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Old 07-13-2010, 09:27 AM   #9
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I think Matt was mis-using the nomenclature, Brian. OTOH, I hope not. Mastic may be easier to remove and clean off the glass.
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Old 07-13-2010, 02:30 PM   #10
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I install a ton of glass tiles. Those lines are clearly from the trowel used to apply the thinset / mastic The thinset should have been flattened before the tiles were installed. To avoid similar looking air pockets, the grout reallllllly has to be worked into the joints.
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Old 07-13-2010, 04:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
I should have used either gray mastic
I have honestly never seen gray mastic.
you sure you didnt mishear the guy ?
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:25 PM   #12
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So the thinset & grout need to be the same color?
What do you do if you want the grout to be a tan shade?
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:29 PM   #13
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No, the thinset and the grout do not need to be the same color. For glass installs I like to use Laticrete 253 or 254 for thinset, usually always white. The key is to flatten out the trowel ridges after combing on the thinset, so the trowel ridges don't show through the tiles or in between.

Grout selection is up to you.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:51 PM   #14
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Ok, smoothing out the trowel ridges makes perfect sense. As does using white thinset.

I was/am confused by the OP, Matt / Junky99 post #5
"So... I talked to the tile manufacturer and they said that because I used white mastic and grey grout that is the outcome. I should have used either gray mastic or white grout. The colors have to be the same!!"
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:58 PM   #15
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Sales people, bless their hearts. I have met very few who have actually installed a tile.

If the sales people used the word 'mastic' even by mistake, its a huge red flag telling me they need a flashlight and both hands to .... well you get the idea. I don't know of anyone who installs glass tiles with mastic. It would take months to cure if ever. The mastic turns colors (usually to a browner shade) when it dries so that would be seen in the grout joints and the stuff shrinks when it dries. That's great for pulling the tiles closer in, but bad for leaving voids which can be seen through the edges of the tiles.

I'd take advice from the people who actually have done this many times successfully.
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