Wondering if it’s worth it or really necessary to seal the grout after tiling? Well, since most grout that’s used throughout the different areas of your home – bathroom, kitchen, shower – are cement-based and porous, the answer is yes! Although you may find conflicting opinions on this matter, the reality is that any porous material that’s left unsealed becomes an easy target for staining and can easily absorb liquids like water, oil, and soap.
If you’re undertaking a home renovation or have an area that needs tiling and grout, here are some points to remember when it comes to grout sealing and why you should bother with it.
What is Grout, Anyway?
Before we get into the why and how, let’s get into the what. In case you’re unfamiliar with it, grout is a fluid-like mixture that is used as a filler between gaps, acting as a means of reinforcing structural elements such as floors, walls, steps, and more. You can think of it as a “light” version of mortar, which is typically intended for jobs such as filling between heavy bricks in a wall. Grout, on the other hand, is used in everything from small-scale masonry jobs to bathroom flooring renovations. For larger spaces, the grout may include fine gravel to ensure an even stronger mixture. Grout is also unique in that it can create a waterproof seal if mixed and utilized correctly.
Now, let’s highlight the reasons you shouldn’t neglect sealing with grout:
It Prevents Discolouration
As mentioned, cement is generally used for grouting tiles. Tiles are usually placed in high-traffic areas, or areas that can sustain a lot of moisture. The problem is that although tiles can handle moisture very well, the porous grout is left vulnerable to absorption. As that porous cement continues to absorb various forms of moisture over time, it can lead to discolouration along the grout lines, which can end up leaving your floor or shower looking pretty unattractive and even dirty. By grout sealing right from the point of installation, you can avoid having to spend more time and money in the future correcting that mistake.
It Helps You Avoid Splatter Marks And Stains
Grout that’s located along the backsplash in your kitchen or bathroom can also be susceptible to splatter marks from your mother’s homemade tomato sauce, or other sources like nail polish and hair dye in the bathroom. Items such as these can leave stains on areas of the grout that can be extremely difficult to remove.
It Protects Against Mold Growth
When you have a porous material that endures lots of consistent moisture and steam, such as in the bathroom, mold growth can become a problem that can easily develop when the grout is left unsealed. Mold can be very hazardous to your health over time and should always be removed with caution. Grout sealing can create a barrier that prevents those optimal conditions from allowing mold to develop and thrive in commons areas like your bathroom and shower.
So, when it’s time to re-grout or install tiling throughout your home, always take that extra step to perform grout sealing so you can protect it from damage and avoid having to deal with problems in the future. And if you’d rather sit back, relax and enjoy your Sunday, call us! Our handymen and renovation experts can take care of it all for you.