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Unread 10-04-2021, 08:40 AM   #1
Just In Tile LLC
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White tile black grout reveals defect

https://www.homedepot.com/p/MSI-Saph...4X16/313353072

https://www.homedepot.com/p/MSI-Saph...4X16/313368335

Morning, both these links are the same tile why there is two links to the same tile who knows? I've installed it recently on a tub surround and after discussing which grout with contractor and homeowner they chose black grout. (I personally do not like the black grout white tile trend and said my grievances during said discussion) Now it seems I have another reason to not like the trend.

Unfortunately I didn't do a sample board, but it may or may not would have caught the defect depending if I chose the "right" tiles to grout. It seems the black grout reveals hairline cracks in the glaze, but these cracks are undetectable in any normal light condition and I was only able to find some on the leftover tile using a high powered light at certain extreme angles.

I've now made a sample board to try and "fix" this issue at home using various methods. Muriatic acid does seem to fade the lines but they still show through.

I've submitted a claim to the tile manufacturer MSI and am waiting to hear back. in the meantime, has anyone encountered this and do you have a possible remedy to avoid tearout of my job.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/15Ya...ew?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/123f...ew?usp=sharing

One picture is sample board grouted black and what is revealed, second link is video of one such hairline crack and the pencil mark shows its origin. So the top tile in the picture middle right crack is the one I'm trying to show in the video and you catch a glimpse of it in the end but show how difficult these glaze cracks are to detect.


AFTER this problem revealed itself I find out where they purchased the tile and look for issues and saw in some comments that this has happened before to some people, yet the HD sight specifically show dark grout in sample pictures, and nothing is mentioned in tile installation instructions from manufacturer. Not all tiles do this its a small fraction on the job maybe 20 tiles overall, but since I've used a paint on membrane and some cuts are buried behind other tiles removal of specific tiles doesn't seem doable.
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Unread 10-04-2021, 09:08 AM   #2
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Posting some pictures this way as well because everyone likes pictures in a post without a link.
Attached Images
  
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Unread 10-04-2021, 09:39 AM   #3
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Advice from my very first tile contractor when I started building in this area some 35 years ago: "No, Ma'am, we can't do black grout on white tiles." While mumbling under his breath, "We can't do no black grout on no kind of tiles, even if such grout actually existed."

Now, of course, it's possible to get some black grout that actually stays mostly black, but the above is still how I would approach the issue. There's just too much that can go wrong with black grout on light colored tiles for me to be comfortable agreeing to do it.

Of course, there's also the problem with my not being comfortable agreeing to do any kind of work these days, but that's another issue entirely.
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Unread 10-04-2021, 09:53 AM   #4
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Hah!!! CX I believe everything you’ve said is right on the money, and I hope to be in the same situation of any tile work is a matter of convincing me to do it again
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Unread 10-04-2021, 10:31 AM   #5
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That sucks Justin. Hope the manufacturer makes it right.

Should we apply the same logic for the reverse, black tiles, white grout?
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Unread 10-04-2021, 11:00 AM   #6
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Me too Shawn, I’d say it’s less risky going the opposite (except) for the fact it can make your work look amateur even with a skillful install if the tile isn’t well made because it shows ALL the variances in the joints.

Even in this case though I can’t even topically color it back to white, the black has seemed to go under the glaze and actually stain the clay bisque. Only thing that did anything is muriatic acid... but that’s on a flat board where I can let it dwell, not a vertical surface inside a home.
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Unread 10-04-2021, 01:21 PM   #7
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Just looks to me like shoddy, damaged/chipped tile. Short of that, the grout should have worked. I do, however agree about using black grout. Not in my world....
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Unread 10-04-2021, 02:52 PM   #8
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That’s the issue I have with it Laz, it’s basically undetectable in real world conditions. Im talking I don’t see the cracks in sunlight pivoting the tile around. It takes a bright light held at sharp angles to maybe spot a line.... well that or black grout. but once you grout it... it looks like you were blind not to see it.
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Unread 10-04-2021, 06:47 PM   #9
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I got these from Lowes on the cheap and was considering white grout to make it "pop" that is why I asked about the reverse. I don't think I will have the problem that you had but I sure will make a sample board to be sure.
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Unread 10-05-2021, 12:16 AM   #10
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i agree, black grout on cheap white tiles, hate it, nothing sucks more than removing tiles after the jobs done
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Unread 10-05-2021, 10:41 AM   #11
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I have never in my career done a white tile black grout project I did not get a complaint on valid or not. I quit doing them years ago except for friends and still got the complaint after I told them ahead of time they would be complaining.
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Unread 10-05-2021, 11:05 AM   #12
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Wow so the comfort in all this is at least a lot of you have learned this lesson the hard way and it was just my turn to join the club. I have done black grout on tile once or twice and although I thought it made my work sloppy which is why I despise it the customer was pleased so I was none the wiser.

I think I’ll sing the tune of black grout white tiles is no longer an option I’ll provide. On another note no word from MSI as of yet either....
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Unread 10-05-2021, 04:17 PM   #13
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Sorry about your situation Justin, that sucks.

Throwing this out there - have you tried a poultice?
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Unread 10-05-2021, 09:46 PM   #14
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I have not Lou, what or how would I go about trying the technique?
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Unread 10-05-2021, 11:22 PM   #15
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https://www.rustoleum.com/-/media/Di...DS_081216.ashx

Try on a sample board for sure.

I don’t really know if you’d need to protect the grout joints (or the best option to do so, if necessary) but I guess if it worked on the cracks but altered the joint shading you could at least have the option of grout staining the joints.
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