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Unread 06-22-2022, 06:44 AM   #1
mferg318
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Significant Efflorescence on new tile shower floor

We just finished building a new house with a tile shower in the master bathroom. The grout for the walls and floor are both charcoal. When the floor grout was installed, it was a much lighter gray than than the charcoal grout on the walls. I confirmed that the correct charcoal color was used. Since the installation, the grout has continued to whiten, which I attribute to efflorescence. Since the grout on the walls turned out fine, I'm assuming this is not an installation issue, rather an issue with the minerals in our water. My plan for fixing is this:

-Clean grout
-stain grout with "Aqua Mix Grout Colorant"
-seal grout
-install some sort of filter to remove mineral from water and prevent future issues

Can anyone confirm whether this is an effective plan? And if so, what kind of filter can I install?

Thank you in advance for any help. It's very frustrating to have a brand new shower that looks so awful.
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Unread 06-22-2022, 04:58 PM   #2
cx
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Welcome, Micah.

First, it would help to know specifically what grout was used.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah
When the floor grout was installed, it was a much lighter gray than than the charcoal grout on the walls. I confirmed that the correct charcoal color was used.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah
I'm assuming this is not an installation issue
Not sure both of those statements can be accurate.

Black, and other dark colors, in cementitious grouts can be troublesome under the best of circumstances. I don't see anything in your photos that would indicate an efflorescence condition, but I frequently miss things in the posted photos that the younger eyes see, so wait for more comments.

Most of my customers over the years are on individual water wells and the water in our are tends to be very hard. Whitish calcium-type build ups are common on many surfaces, and shower floors suffer mightily. Can't say if that's part of your problem or not.

If you scrape the grout on the floor with a hard tool, do you see the original grout color?

Overwatering in the mixing and/or clean-up of the grout is a common problem, again, with cementitious grouts. Painting the grout with a grout colorant is one of the more common recommendations from the grout manufacturers, but shower floors are not the best candidates for that sort of treatment, either.
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Unread 06-25-2022, 09:13 AM   #3
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Hi Micah,

I suggest scrubbing the floor with white vinegar and water mixed half and half. Rinse thoroughly afterward. If that doesn't work you might consider living with it. It doesn't look bad to me, and shower floor grout eventually changes color no matter how you maintain it.
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