Grout Haze Gone! Here's my best method [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


View Full Version : Grout Haze Gone! Here's my best method

10-09-2002, 07:40 PM
It was a tough job, but somebody had to do it!

Thanks to all your sage advice and a little experimenting on my own, I found this to be the least painful way to get the haze off. (not that it was fun...)

1. Put the 50/50 vinegar-water mix in one of those garden sprayers. The kind that you pump up and it shoots a fine mist.

2. Mist a section of floor no wider than 36" but as long as you want. (the 36" is because if you go any wider, you'll be crawling around on clean tile. Your arms should reach the 36" ok when you're drying it in step 4.)

3. Take a hand towel (I used a Miracle Cloth) and hook it up to a Swiffer mop. Get it wet first and then wring it out. Mop over the misted tiles, using a little elbow grease.

4. Take a dry bath size towel and wipe tiles until dry.

You'll have to wring out the cloth that's on your mop after each section, and change it or rinse it when it gets too dirty. I changed drying towels after they started to feel ever so slightly damp.

You might have to do this twice to get all the haze off; depends on how much was on there in the first place.

Don't forget to pick up some knee pads! I got some cheapo ones at Lowe's for $3.99 and they were worth every penny. Made out of dense foam with velcro straps.

Another note: I tried some of the Aquamix Gold 15 on a few grout lines that will be hidden by a cabinet. I used the applicator with the little brush on it. Worked great, very easy and I especially liked the fact that you can adjust the amount of sealer coming out of the bottle by twisting the lid.

When I later went over that area with the mister - *nothing soaked in*!! With just one coat! I'm still going to try and add another just to see if it will take any more, but I was very impressed.

Thanks to all you pros and hope this helped some other poor amateur out there. :cool:

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Cami A
10-09-2002, 07:48 PM
Wendy, you've got your money's worth out of that sprayer. :D

Ya know, that's prolly just how dh would do it, minus the Miracle cloth. Me? Splash some vinegar/water mix around, check a few forums, see if the haze has disappeared. See why you obsessive types get to do all the work?;););)

Pictures soon?

10-09-2002, 07:49 PM
Weed, Your post was helpful. How long did you let the vinegar/water solution soak on the tiles? Or did you mist and wipe up right away? Thanks! Sue (:

10-09-2002, 07:50 PM
Did I say "weed", I meant Wendy!! (:

10-09-2002, 08:01 PM
Cami: I will put some pictures up tomorrow. Having a well deserved martini right now :)

Obsessive types do the work eh? Well, that's true I guess, because we do it RIGHT!! :D :D :D

Sue: No problem calling me Weed - that's been my nickname since I was a kid :)

I pretty much just sprayed it and went to town mopping. If your haze is thick, you might want to let it sit for a few minutes. I had already gone over this floor once using the torturous method of spritzing with a spray bottle and scrubbing/wiping with hand towels on my hands and knees. (I actually used Miracle Cloths).

In the light of day I saw many spots that were missed or just didn't get it all off. I think if I'd started with the method above, it still would have taken 2 times but been easier. For the first pass, I would have let it soak a bit.

10-09-2002, 08:04 PM
P.S. Sue, are you a lefty?

10-09-2002, 09:18 PM
...and Cami; are you a lurker over there, or are you remodeling too? ;)

Cami A
10-09-2002, 09:28 PM
Wendy, I'm usually on the Building a Home board, and wander through the decorating and K&B daily. You'll see me as Lynn_upnorth_aka_Cami there.

Enjoy your 'tini. :D

10-10-2002, 04:17 PM
Cami - I figured you were pecking around over there :)

Sue20 - I also have some good tips for sealing grout if you're interested. After trial and error I usually find the fastest most effective way to do tedious jobs :D

10-11-2002, 06:32 PM
Not sure what you mean, Wendy?? I am usually a "rightie". But I part my hair on the left?
Would appreciate your tips on sealing grout, if you have the time....thanks!!! (-:

10-11-2002, 06:38 PM
I asked about being a lefty because you make your smilies backwards. Like this: (:

Will post the sealing tips later; I have a refrigerator crisis at the moment. :(

10-11-2002, 09:23 PM
Ok, here are my sealing tips:

Use Aquamix Gold 15 of course. :D

I started out with the squeeze bottle with the brush on the end. It was easy to regulate the sealer flow with the adjustable lid, but getting good control was harder. The brush splays out if the right pressure isn't used and deposits sealer on the tile edges. To get it right you have to work slowly. Too slowly.

After working with it for 45 minutes and calculating how much longer the whole floor would take, I stopped and went back to Home Depot. Bought the squeeze bottle with the wheel on the end.

That one is more difficult to get the hang of, but once you get it right it's a breeze. The sealer came out too slow with the red thingie in it, so I took it out. Now the sealer was coming out pretty fast, but once I figured out how much pressure to use and how fast I should be moving across the joints, it was fast! Did about 700 sf in one hour! The wheel is hard so it rides in the joints like a train in a track. I had my kneepads on and just crawled quickly across the floor holding that wheel steady in the groove and squeezing with even pressure.

I did all the East/West lines first - started at one wall and went all the way across the room to the other wall. Then came back and did the North/South lines. The N/S was harder because I had to be careful not to step on the wet E/W lines. My tile is 17x17 so that wasn't too hard.

I still dripped here and there when I moved the bottle from one line to another. The label says to wipe these up within 5 or 10 minutes, but I was so tired at that point that I didn't. This morning I wiped them up just fine, despite the fact that they had dried. (my tile is glazed).

Hope this all made sense. Overall I liked the wheel much better for it's easy ride down the grout lines and speed of application.