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Unread 02-25-2012, 11:45 AM   #1
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Well water/City water; makes a difference in grout colour?

Had a customer who had an incident that sounded like installer error but she did ask a quesiton that I had never heard and maybe you guys have. It doesnt seem like like this would have an effect, but does the type of water you use when you are mixing grout have an effect on the colour. . and if so is it drastic? The lady had 2 installers mix the colour light smoke, and she showed me a picture on her phone and the two installers who came one after another had basically 2 different grout colours, though they claimed to have both mixed up light smoke grout (Same brand as well)
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Unread 02-25-2012, 11:54 AM   #2
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I don't have any proof of this, but I would say that it could potentially cause some issues.
My parents house is on well water, and it has stained their toilets and sinks, anywhere that has a drip or constant flow of some minimal amount.

I think it would depend on the situation, what is in the water etc. What did the two installers mix with? Different water each I'd assume?
Maybe they could try mixing a small batch with well water, and another with city water from the same package and see what happens?
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Unread 02-25-2012, 12:12 PM   #3
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The installers may have not mixed the 2 batches with exactly the same amounts of grout or water. That can make variations in color as well.
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Unread 02-25-2012, 03:37 PM   #4
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1 installer mixed it with well water from outside faucet I believe and the other mixed it with water from the bathtub indoors which is goes through some kind of process that the exterior faucet does not. I'm not sure of the quantities that they mixed it in but I was curious if that would make a difference too. One grout looked completely dark brown and the other looked like a linen colour.
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Unread 02-25-2012, 04:19 PM   #5
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Normally like Todd said, different amounts of water are used depending on the installer. When you do it as much as we do you don't use measuring cups. To most of us it is not rocket science we get to the right consistency and we go. I will say when you do get too much water in the mixture initially while you mix or while wiping the normal occurrence is the grout will lighten. More water, you weaken the color.

So in your case it sounds like the well water did have an effect. Assuming the dark brown was the grout from the one who mixed it with well water. So the well water did not have the chance to go through the normal in-house softener.

The one with the dark brown, maybe he was mixing up some chocolate milk and syrup got into the mix
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Unread 02-25-2012, 04:22 PM   #6
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I actually laughed in my chair after that chocolate syrup picture ! I reckon that is what is going on here!
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Unread 02-25-2012, 04:37 PM   #7
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Probably the biggest reason for grout color differences is the actual amount of water used. But, also consider that depending on how things were transported, the packaging method, and if you try to only mix part of the grout package, the color portion may slightly stratify, and there could be more color/cement/sand at the top of the package than at the bottom. Minerals in the water could be an issue as could chlorine or florine.
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Unread 02-26-2012, 09:34 AM   #8
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The water that comes out of my well is dark orange from the iron content. I can't use a sprinkler because it will dye the grass orange and also clog the sprinkler in about 2 hours. After processing through a water softener with special iron treatment, it still slowly turned everything it touched yellow over time. I was happy to pay for city water when it became available. I totally believe it could make a difference in grout color.

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Unread 02-26-2012, 11:12 AM   #9
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did they use grout from the same bag? grouts have dye lot issues just like tile. That is why the manufacturers recommend dry mixing the powder if several bags are used. The trouble may be efloresence. When the grout is wet, does it look all the same color? If so an acid wash followed by Aquamix enrich and seal should fix it.
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