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Old 07-28-2015, 04:33 PM   #1
cxp
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MAPEI Flexcolor vs Opticolor

I searched online and decided to go with MAPEI as they have true white grout.
But when the technical staff told me Flexcolor(acrylic) is better than Opticolor (epoxy), as epoxy resin will turn yellow under the sun light, while acrylic will not, I am lost. What is your opinion?

also, can someone tell me how easy is to apply and clean, compare Flexcolor to Opticolor?

Thank you all in advance.

Clare

p.s. my contractor does not have extensive experience with epoxy grout.
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Old 07-28-2015, 04:46 PM   #2
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Welcome, Clare.

To get you started, enter each of those words separately, flexcolor and opticolor, into the Advanced Search feature and ask for Titles. You'll find threads of discussion, some rather extensive ones in the Hangout, for each.

It might also be useful if you'd tell us your application.
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:58 AM   #3
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Clare,

As in all things, there are pros and cons to one over the over - depending on the situation. Like other products, grout recommendations are typically application-specific, i.e. where will it be used? (indoor, outdoor, submerged, etc.), tile type (porcelain, natural stone, etc.), grout joint width (1/16" - 1").... etc.

OPTICOLOR
2-part epoxy (requires drill mixing)
grouts from 1/16" to 3/8" grout joint
once mixed, cannot be stored for later use
can be used in submerged conditions (pools, fountains, etc.)
can be used in steam rooms, saunas
prolonged exposure to U.V. rays may cause discoloration over time (esp. lighter colors)

FLEXCOLOR CQ
premixed (requires NO mixing)
grouts from 1/16" to 1/2" grout joint
can be stored for later use (1 yr. shelf life after initial use)
cannot be used in submerged conditions (pools, fountains, etc.)
cannot be used in steam rooms, saunas
color is not affected by U.V. exposure

Both are extremely color-consistent; can be used interior/exterior; can be re-applied over itself.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:31 AM   #4
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MAPEI Flexcolor vs Opticolor - bathrooms in an apt

sorry guys, how could I not tell you the application, stupid me!

It is for my 2 bathrooms, both of them have a 20"Wx50"H window. I am using polished porcelain tiles, 12x24, 12x36, one of them glass looking. And I really really want to have 1/32 space, although it is against everyone's recommendation.

My contractor has good skills, with limited experience in epoxy grout, but he is confident (there may be something he did not want to tell me).

I have read in the forum. One thread says that Flexcolor will not damage glass tile, while Opticolor may - better to test before use.

I can buy them at Lowes store off shelf, but part A&B coming in a 4 bottle box for over $300. MAPEI tech, do you offer small text sample package, I am willing to pay for it.

Compare these two, which one is easier to apply? which one has smoother texture, for small space between the tiles, smoother texture is better.

I am leaning towards Flexcolor at the moment. MAPEI tech, is there a package smaller than 14Ib?

Thank you all.
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Old 07-29-2015, 09:35 AM   #5
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My opinion is that Flexcolor CQ is easier to apply and is a better choice for glass tiles. It has more flexibility and isn't prone to UV discoloration.
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:17 AM   #6
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Jim's pretty much summed it up!

The color-coated aggregate in the Flexcolor CQ tends to makes for a more "forgiving" grout when it comes to scratch-prone tile surfaces, e.g. glass, polished stone, etc., and a little easier to apply - as Jim mentioned. With that being said, though, MAPEI always recommends testing the grout on separate tile samples, or an a small area before grouting. The texture is quite similar between the two of them.

MAPEI does not offer "sample" sizes for either of these. The Flexcolor CQ is available in 36 colors, and in 2 formats: 1 gal (14 lb.), or 2 gal (28 lb.). Lowe's carries the smaller 1 gal. size.
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Old 07-29-2015, 11:04 AM   #7
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At one time some glass tile manufacturers recommended against the use of epoxy grout with their products. Don't know if that's changed.

And don't know if any of them have published guidelines at all about the use of the newer single-component grouts (Flexcolor CQ, etc.).
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Old 08-01-2015, 07:14 AM   #8
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Pros, thank you so much for your input.

I am off to Lowes to get Flexcolor, they are off shelf, with the colors I want. Another big advantage. The only compaint I have is they all coming in 14Ib @$88 each, nothing smaller. I have small area of grey tiles.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-03-2015, 04:43 AM   #9
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I had one bathroom done with Fusion Pro, but the rest of the house with FlexColor CQ, and the tile guys loved the Flexcolor CQ. I had to replace 2 broken tiles and I am not good with anything like tile work and I thought the FlexColor CQ was a breeze to work with.

Also depending on where you are located see if there is a local distributor or reseller of the product. I found a reseller in my area and 2 gallon pails were like $110 each.
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Old 08-24-2015, 01:21 PM   #10
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I'm a little late getting to the discussion, but I'm currently in the same boat. I have to grout my shower and bathroom, 12x24 porcelain for the bathroom floor, shower curb, and two shower walls (9'x38" and 9'x6'), and then a porcelain arabesque mesh backed tile in 12"x12" squares on the hardware wall (9'x38"). Then the small pebble shower floor also in 12"x12" mesh squares (32"x6'). I have installed the Schluter Shower system with a 11" extension of dry pack for the floor and Kerdi on all the walls. I had done the research and like Mapei products and settled on Opticolor. What would be the benefit for me to use Flexcolor CQ. Things that don't matter to me, mixing, storage time, and uv (no windows).
Things that do matter to me, how fast I have to apply it, how forgiving it is while I apply it, staining, longevity, clean up.
My grout lines are 1/16 everywhere.
Thank you for all your help.
Cheers
Greg
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Old 08-24-2015, 01:25 PM   #11
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Welcome, Greg.

I think that was covered by the MAPEI rep in post 3 of this thread.
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Old 08-24-2015, 01:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CX
At one time some glass tile manufacturers recommended against the use of epoxy grout with their products. Don't know if that's changed.

And don't know if any of them have published guidelines at all about the use of the newer single-component grouts (Flexcolor CQ, etc.).
Oceanside does not recommend epoxy grout for their glass tile. They have a nice chart showing what grout they recommend for each of their lines of tile and they do mention urethane grouts.
http://glasstile.com/pdf/installatio...ection2012.pdf

But Bisazza does recommend epoxy grout and makes their own.
http://www.bisazza.it/bisazza_stage/...-tiles_eng.pdf


So its all over the place. Check with your glass tile manufacturer. I just try to avoid unsanded unless everything else scratches the glass.

I have never had an issue with epoxy grout and glass tile but you need plenty of movement joints. I can see the advantage of the new more flexible single-component with glass tile in interior non submerged applications- but you still need movement joints
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Old 08-24-2015, 07:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg
Then the small pebble shower floor also in 12"x12" mesh squares (32"x6').
Welcome Greg. If you're talking about pebbles- like rock-type pebbles, you'll want to go with the epoxy. The urethane single component isn't recommended for pebbles on shower floors.
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