Dealing with cracked grout is a common issue that comes up for many homeowners at some point. While grout is a durable material, tile surfaces suffer a lot of wear and tear that can crack it, resulting in a shabby look. Therefore, learning how to repair cracked grout can be an essential skill to learn. Here are the basics for completing this task successfully.
Step 1 - Try Grout Caulk
One of the easiest ways to try and repair cracked grout is to simply use grout caulk. This is a substance that matches the color of grout exactly and comes in a normal caulking tube. You can simply squeeze the tube in a caulk gun and apply it to any cracks that you may have. Make sure to smooth the caulking over by wetting your finger and running it over the repaired area. This tends to work better on very small cracks in areas that will not see high traffic. However, it is the easiest method available.
Step 2 - Find Matching Grout
If grout caulk does not work, you will have to find a grout mix that matches what already exists. This will be easy if you have some left over from the original installation. If that is the case, just find a bag and you are ready to go.
If you do not have any left over, you should try and find the exact same brand and color as the original installation. Trying to match an unknown grout by just comparing colors can be very difficult. Therefore, it is best if you can find the exact same material to make sure that it matches.
Step 3 - Mix the Grout
Once you locate the grout that you need, you will need to mix it up. Take a bucket and mix water and the grout together inside; read the directions on the side of the bag to ensure that you use the appropriate amount of water. You need to make sure it is the right consistency before you begin.
Step 4 - Fill in the Crack
With the grout mixed up, you can try filling in the crack immediately. This will be a very easy solution to your problem if it works. Take a grout float and use it to apply the material to the crack. Then, wash off any excess around the outside of the grout line and let it dry. If this works, you should not be able to tell the new patch from the old and it will look very good. However, sometimes you can tell that you patched it and another approach will be needed.
Step 5 - Remove the Old Grout
Take a grout saw and remove all of the existing grout from in between the tiles. Make sure not to apply any pressure to the tile so you don't break it while you are doing this.
Step 6 - Install Grout
Once the old grout is removed, use the grout float to fill the empty joint. Take a sponge afterward and wipe off the grout lines to level them off and clean away excess.