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Unread 12-19-2006, 09:31 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Oxnard Ca.
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Waterproofing Grout

Hello all,
I have read all that pertains to grout sealers and am still confused as heck. I have an all tile shower that I just installed with a PVC membrane pan. Every sealer I have tried will not hold out the water no matter how many coats I use. So far I have tried 4 different sealers (all water based because I didn't know there was an option) and the grout will always darken when wet.
Can anyone tell me what sealer if any will completely waterproof my grout? I used 3x6 ceramic subways on the wall and 2x2 ceramic mosaics on the floor with a 1/4' grout line (sanded). If I use solvent based will I need to strip off the multiple coats of waterbased? Thanks in advance, Dave
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Unread 12-19-2006, 11:20 AM   #2
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Location: Ballard, WA
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Sealers DO NOT waterproof the grout joints. That is one reason there is a waterproof liner under the tile on the shower floor and why walls are built to be waterproof and provisions made for where will the water flow. If water beads up on the grout the sealer is doing its thing. Keeping soap and shampoo skum from guilding up on the grout.
Good Luck

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Unread 12-19-2006, 12:19 PM   #3
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I guess this is what I'm saying is that the sealer I'm using is not beading the water because the darkening of the grout meens it is taking on water. I have seen several newly constructed homes and it does not look like the grout is taking on water. From what I understand about this type of pan is that if water stands under it mold will develop and eventually lift my tile. Without constant dry airflow, water or moisture in any amounts will produce mold.
Not to dought your expertise but I am finding it hard to believe that my $2,000 and unbelievable amounts of labor on my part are pretty much wasted. Is there a reason the grout can not be made impermeable to water and is there a sealer that will do this? Did I use the wrong grout? Sorry for the sound of frustration but it's been a long journey. Thanks, Dave
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Unread 12-19-2006, 12:31 PM   #4
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Hi David,
Sorry to hear you're having such a hard time.

Not a pro but I can only tell you what I did. When I did my tile installation I also did a water test using a spray bottle and squirted my tile and grout where I had sealed it. If water sunk in, I just added another coat of sealant. I only did that in a inconspicuous place though.

Anyway, I had to use 3 coats of sealant on grout on the floor, testing in between applications. (about 3-4 hours in between)

I used a Miracle 511 impregnator solvent based sealant mainly because I used it on a backsplash and it did wonders though it sure smells to the high heaven.

I also used a sealant applicator so I let loose as much sealant as the grout would hold and wiped up the excess.

You may simply just need to add another coat of sealant I'm thinking.


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