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-   -   Unglazed Porcelain Tile (https://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=128684)

Smith6025 02-02-2020 01:48 PM

Unglazed Porcelain Tile
1 Attachment(s)
New to tile install and decided on an unglazed porcelain tile for our shower floor. After the install including grouting, we are finding it very hard to clean the grout haze from the tile. After some googling we are now finding that unglazed porcelain needs to be sealed before grouting? Is this true? We tried a heavy duty acidic cleaner with some major scrubbing to no avail. Is there any way to get it clean? Any help is appreciated!! Thanks!!!!

Tool Guy - Kg 02-02-2020 03:51 PM

Welcome to the forum, Alex! :wave:

Can we get another picture or two from a slightly different angle or with different lighting? The lighting on this picture makes it look as though the tile is upside-down.

And, for scale, can you tell us how big the tiles are?


Smith6025 02-02-2020 04:40 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Thank you, Tool Guy!!!! Here is another picture from a different angle. They are little 2x2 1/2 inch hexagons that came on a 12x12 inch sheet.

cx 02-02-2020 06:16 PM

Welcome, Alex. :)

It'll help a great deal if you'll tell us very specifically what grout you used. Brand name, make and model.

John Bridge 02-03-2020 08:44 AM

Hi Alex, :)

The tiles don't appear to be unglazed porcelain to me. Looks like they are pitted and the grout is in the pits. If that is the case you may never get it out of there.

Aside: Unglazed porcelain is almost always smoother than that and typically is just grouted without problems. The exception would be in the case of "polished" porcelain which is sealed prior to grouting.

speed51133 02-03-2020 12:59 PM

I would go ahead and post the make/model of the tile you used. That along with the same info for the grout is needed.

Smith6025 02-09-2020 12:44 PM

Tile Used
1 Attachment(s)
See attached picture

Smith6025 02-09-2020 12:45 PM

Grout Used
1 Attachment(s)
See attached picture

Tool Guy - Kg 02-09-2020 01:57 PM

Hi, Alex.

Thanks for answering our questions. It helps to understand what we’re up against and certain limitations to our suggested solutions.

Yeah, those unglazed porcelain tiles with a micro-fine rough texture are a bugger to clean grout from if you don’t prepare for it. Some pros will use a grout release (probably what was meant by “sealer” in your research). And others will run a damp sponge over the tiles a few seconds prior to spreading tile in an effort to keep the grout from sticking.

A couple more questions, if I may:
1) How long after grouting did you wait before sponging it off?
2) How long after that did you use a “heavy duty acidic cleaner”?
3) What was the acidic cleaner and please describe your procedure for applying.


Smith6025 02-10-2020 07:37 AM

1 Attachment(s)
1. After grouting, waited about 20 minutes and sponged off all the excess grout. Then, came back about two hours later to wipe away any grout haze and we realized it wasn’t coming off easy.

2. After trying a few household things to try and get it clean, we tried the acidic cleaner after about 6 days(see picture).

3. We followed the directions for the cleaner. Wet tile before, apply a 10/1 ratio of water/cleaner for mild stains, agitate with a medium brush, let sit for 3-5 minutes agitating periodically, wash with warm water and then wash with a neutral ph cleaner. That made it look marginally better. We did it in sections, not the whole floor at once.

We tried again the next day with a 4/1 ratio of water/cleaner for tougher stains. Some of the tiles look like they came clean while others still look the same.

jerrymlr1 02-10-2020 09:39 AM

You could try mixing some grout and scrub it with a sponge forcing the sanded grout into the tile a bit. Sponge it off so the tile is clean again and rinse it off with some lightly acidic water. Don't let it sit of course, clean it right away. I do it with Bisazza glass mosaics all the time. Your tile is slightly pitted so I wouldn't expect to get all that out but it's worth a try.

Tool Guy - Kg 02-12-2020 01:59 AM

If the 4:1 ratio made improvements, do it again. I don’t think I remember the last time I used that product, so don’t remember the directions or limitations on how strong you can mix it. If allowed, and you’re able to do a small test, I’d consider reducing the ratio to 3:1 or 2:1 and having a go at it.


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