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Unread 02-23-2009, 03:48 PM   #1
gramps
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re: cleaning mortar between joints

I wanted to know the best way to clean mortar between tile joints after it has cured (for a day)

I have used a cloth and scrubed but it is very tedious

I have a dremel rotary tool, with many types of bits.

Has anyone used a dremel tool between the cracks to remove mortar? what types of bits have you used? brass wire brushes? or maybe steel?

thoughts on the cleaning of the mortar is appreciated
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Unread 02-23-2009, 05:19 PM   #2
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Gramps - you can do fine with the dremel as long as you take care not to chip the tile edges. You can also just use a sharp razor blade if the mortar is just a day or so old. It should still be green enough that just a sharp blade will do it.
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Unread 02-23-2009, 05:21 PM   #3
jay f
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Another way is to carefully use a cement board cutting tool.
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Unread 02-23-2009, 05:41 PM   #4
Ken
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razor knife...

see: http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...ad.php?t=71196
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Unread 02-23-2009, 06:35 PM   #5
Mountain Tile
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You could also use a grout saw.
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Unread 02-23-2009, 10:18 PM   #6
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Avoid the problem to begin with. After I set my tile and am satisfied that it is level with the adjacent tiles, I use a Popsicle stick that has been cut to the grout line width to clean out the wet thin set. Go over it with a damp sponge and there is nothing to clean up the next day.
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Unread 02-23-2009, 10:24 PM   #7
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Good tip, George, but sound like it might be a bit late in this case. Rock knife will work good on green mortar. Dremel with 1/16" or 1/8" carbide rasps also work good, don't use any kind of wheel. They're available at the big stores @ $9 apiece

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Unread 02-24-2009, 10:51 PM   #8
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i sometimes use dremmel's stainless steel tiny wire wheel, it makes quick work of light contamination, but don't use the brass, it will deposit brass on the tiles and may inhibit bonding of next grout application.
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Unread 02-25-2009, 10:46 AM   #9
gramps
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I also noticed, that for the areas that are tough, that the diamond coated blades work well, I noticed that the porcelain materials was not taken off (unless I tried). The silicon carbide grinding bits did wonders for getting rid of large amounts of material. wear a dust mask!
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Unread 02-25-2009, 10:57 PM   #10
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Forget the dust mask. Keep a vacuum hose close by. Vac running, of course.

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Unread 02-26-2009, 06:17 AM   #11
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Wear the mask and use the vacuum. You got only 1 pair of lungs, and they gotta last.
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Unread 02-26-2009, 06:47 AM   #12
gueuzeman
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Bob, as a smoker that's a pretty poor argument to me, but for general good practices for consumers, you are probably right.

I do know from just doing a large (450 ft) grout removal, good vac technique and regular filter cleaning (4x daily) will save you from having to clean the rest of the room, and house.

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Unread 02-26-2009, 03:24 PM   #13
gramps
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re: wall tile grout

This is very frustrating,
I have found no guides, videos images on how to grout wall tiles

I tried, but i couldn't manage anything more than using my fingers for this, and gave up after a couple of rows.


p.s. I have half the grout I mixed and put it inside a sealed container. . Is this grout still good to use tommorow, or does it have to be scrapped?

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Unread 02-26-2009, 03:37 PM   #14
Snets
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Gramps, what kind of grout are you using?

Generally, no, it will not be good tomorrow. If it is Portland Cement based, you cannot stop the chemical reaction. Same for epoxy. Cold will slow it but not stop it.

Are you using a grout float? Lay the float at about a 45 degree or flatter and go diagonal to the grout line. This should shove the grout in. It's ging to be messy if you don't do it every day. Maybe you mixed it too loose? A little dryer mix for walls?

Some others that know more than me will chime in, try not to get too frustrated. You can definately do it but you may have to restart fresh tomorrow with a new batch.

Make sure you get your tiles clean from whatever you did today.
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Unread 02-26-2009, 03:41 PM   #15
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Sorry, Gramps...but grout does have a "pot life." Even sealed, it's useless after a couple of hours. The good news is that it's cheap.

Mix it up to a creamy consistancy. Let it set for about 5 minutes and mix it again. Add a tad of water or powder to get kinda rich, creamy consistancy. And no, I didn't write descriptions for Betty Crocker.....

Pick up a glob on your grout float. You need one that is a bit soft on the edges....usually the rubber is light colored.

Holding it horizontally, push or smack it on the lower section of the wall....drag it up in a kind of diagonal movement, pressing the grout into the lines as you go. Dropped some on your shoe, eh? Welcome to the club. Trust this...it gets easier as you go along. How many times did you take a header off your first bike? You'll get the feel pretty quick.

Stay with us....we'll walk you through it.....
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