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How To Re-grout Tiles

  • February 3, 2021

Tiles can add to the beauty of your home, but if your grout is looking worse for wear, it can make your property look outdated. Tiles are highly durable and last for decades if they have been properly installed.

If you have tiles that are still in excellent condition, a simple re-grouting job can give your space an instant facelift. You can call the professionals, or you can tackle the project on your own.

Here at Atlas Ceramics, we have put together an easy to follow guide that will walk you through everything you need to know about re-grouting tiles.

confused man

Prepare Yourself To Tackle The Grout

In the past, getting rid of old grout meant hours or even days of painstakingly chipping away at old material. Whether it was a tiny grout saw or a chipping tool, this part of the project was easily the most time-consuming.

Thankfully time and patience have produced easier methods of grout removal. You can purchase a tile grout removal kit online or from any local hardware store. These kits usually feature an attachment that will fit into a Dremel tool to make your old grout hit the dust, literally.

The high-speed carbide drill bit removes old grout with ease, and protects the edges of the tile from chipping at the same time. Just make sure that you wear safety gear (we recommend Rubi gear) and crack open a window to keep the air clean and reduce toxins. Once you finish, you can use a grout saw to clean out the joints and scrape the edges away.

Get Your Space In Order

Removing grout is understandably a messy job. You will have dust particles and bits of old mortar everywhere. To help reduce the amount of clean-up, lay down some tarp or plastic sheets around the area you plan to de-grout beforehand.

You will need to wear protective gear, such as a high-grade construction mask, protective eyewear, and gloves. These products can be found on our website (provided by Rubi Tools). If you have a small vacuum, use it to reduce dust as you work. Also, a spray bottle of water can help limit airborne dust.

Rubi Protective Goggles
Rubi Protective Goggles

Tackle Old Grout

There are a few different tools you can use to get rid of old grout. You can also remove grout with regular hand tools such as a grout pick. However, this is a much more labour-intensive method. A carbide grout removal blade on top of an oscillating tool, paired with a handheld grout saw is a great combination. This will easily make removing grout lines quick and efficient, whilst a handsaw can keep your tile corners intact during grout removal.

Before you start to remove old grout, add a few sprays of water to the grout line you plan to remove. This will keep airborne dust to a minimum whilst you are working.

Also, water will help keep your blade cool during grout removal. Make sure that you move to different spots when using your removal tool. If your tiles heat up too much, they can crack or even burn, so watch out for this.

Remove Excess Residue

After removing as much grout as possible with your oscillating tool, use the grout saw to remove any residue that has been left behind. You can also remove grout from hard to reach areas by hand if your power tools won’t reach those areas.

A dull work knife is great to remove grout from tight corners and small cracks. Brush or vacuum away the debris every few lines removed to maintain a clean working environment. Once your grout has been removed, clean up the grout lines to get rid of any excess dust or old pebbles.

Grouting removal
Grouting removal

Prepare Your New Grout

To prepare your new grout, use a large container to add in your powder mixture (we recommend Weber Grouts). Then add the required water amount that instructions say on the packaging. Mix well and keep adding the remainder of water slowly until your grout mixture is as thick as paste, but not quite pourable. Almost like peanut butter. (Weber site link)

Apply Your New Grout

With a clean trowel, apply a liberal amount of grout mixture to the grout lines of your tiles. There is no reason to be exact at this stage. This is because you are simply trying to get the material in the cracks.

With a rubber grout float, angle the tool sharply and push the grout into the joints. Use a spreading motion with an even amount of pressure filling all of the joints as you go along. Keep filling your tiles joints with grout until there are no gaps left. There should not be very much grout leftover on the tiles themselves, it should all be in the joints.

Grout Application
Grout Application

Clean Your Recently Grouted Tiles

Once you have all of your joints filled with grout, take a utility sponge that has been lightly dampened. Wipe down the tiles and joints gently to remove any extra grout, but not hard enough to disturb your new application.

Once the surface has been cleaned, let your grout dry for 24 hours. Once the time is up, you will notice a slight haze over your new grout lines and tiles. To remove this haze, use a clean damp sponge to clean the tile and the grout again. This process can be repeated as often as required and will generally take a few days to remove all of the grout haze.

Cleaning tiles and grout lines
Cleaning tiles and grout lines

Our Final Thoughts

Replacing old grout is an affordable way to give your tiles a facelift. Not only are you saving money on new tiles, but you are also adding aesthetic value to your home by maintaining the look of your grout. Most homeowners can complete a re-grouting project in a weekend, but if you don’t have the time to spare, we can help you. Give us a call today on 01425 621173 to find out more about our affordable tile and grout packages.

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