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Old 10-12-2018, 08:06 PM   #1
chemprof
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Caulk around bathtub base?

When our bathroom was remodeled three years ago, they ran the floor tile to within about 1/8 inch of the base of the tub. That space was filled with grout. It has started to crack and has come out in a couple of places. I am trying to decide how to “fix” this. I am guessing that should have been caulked in the first place since it is a change in plane.

I am really having a hard time getting out all of the grout because it is really tight in some spots and is not loose all the way across. Can I just get out the majority and then caulk over the rest? Will the caulk stick if there is any residual grout left in the gap?

I was originally thinking of using 100% silicone caulk but wonder if a siliconized acrylic would suffice since it is easier to work with and easier to remove down the road. This tub is rarely used, so the odds of water getting onto that area are slim. How does siliconized acrylic hold up compared to 100% silicone?
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Old 10-12-2018, 08:53 PM   #2
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I’d spend the extra time to remove the grout. The more you remove and replace with sealant, the better the sealant can deform/distort without cracking.

100% silicone is substantially more flexible and higher performing. Use denatured alcohol or preferably something like Caulk-Ez to tame the silicone. Use a caulk smoothing tool rather than your finger so that the caulk bead doesn’t taper down to a feather edge and you’ll add to its longevity (feather edges tend to peel away).

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Old 10-15-2018, 11:54 AM   #3
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well...I have scraped and scraped and can’t get out but about 4 or 5 small 1-2 inch sections of grout along the length of the tub where it meets the floor. A few spots show some cracking up near the edge of the tub, but will not loosen enough to come out. The vast majority of this grout is not budging. I obviously can’t just leave what I have cause there are some gaps in the line of grout where pieces did come out. Looks like I have two options, neither of which is great.

1. Try to match the grout the best I can and just refill the spots that are missing.
2. Go over the grout with caulk.

Which option sounds like the best plan? Is there any other alternative?
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Old 10-15-2018, 03:16 PM   #4
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Hi Rob. Do you own a Dremel? Home Depot has diamond grout bits to fit it that works well. I believe they have a 1/16 and 1/8 bits. If you go that direction, take it slow and easy to avoid letting the Dremel skid across the tiles.
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Old Yesterday, 02:06 PM   #5
chemprof
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a new issue : grout and caulk around tub

I just was looking closely at the caulk where the tub meets the wall tile and discovered there is about a 1 foot section just under the tub faucet area where it appears they put grout, not caulk. Never noticed it before-I thought it had caulk all the way around.

It is a very small amount of grout (with no evidence of caulk over it.). So along that shorter side where all the plumbing is, there is a section with caulk, then grout under the faucet area, then caulk again coming across and down the side of the tub by the wall. Is the grout there for a reason?? Did they leave that grout so water could drain out? Ever heard of this configuration??

Just wondering whether to leave it alone or if it would be better to take out the grout and caulk all the way across that section.
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Old Yesterday, 08:08 PM   #6
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While there’s a chance this was done intentionally, it’s far more likely that it was an error or possibly just sloppiness.

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Old Yesterday, 08:20 PM   #7
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So, should I scrape out the grout and re-caulk that entire side or just leave it alone? The area with the grout is starting to crack a bit, but it is not too bad. We rarely use this bathtub for showers and the rest of the caulk is still is good shape as it is only a few years old.

I know the ideal situation would be to remove all the old caulk all the way around and re-do the entire tub surround area, but I am hoping to avoid doing that for a few more years.
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