After the tile is installed, a sealant should be applied. This will help keep out mold, grease, and dirt.
In time, the sealant will start to break down making a reseal necessary. But the question is, how often do you need to reseal?
There is no cut a dry answer to this question. Rather, you will need to look at the specific circumstances to find a solution that works for you. Here are some things to consider.
Factors to Consider in Resealing Grout
How often you need to reseal grout depends on where the grouted area is located and whether or not it’s a high traffic location. For instance, if you are looking at an area in a rarely used guest bathroom, you will not need to reseal very often. If you are looking at the area in your master bath, on the other hand, a reseal may be in order once a year or even every six months.
How to Determine When it’s Time to Reseal
Ironically, the need for resealing is directly related to how often you clean your tiles. The chemicals in the cleaners you use wear down the sealant allowing dirt mold and mildew to get in.
Areas that don’t get a lot of traffic won’t need to be cleaned as often and therefore, they won’t need to be resealed as often. Although some grout experts may recommend an annual reseal, if you aren’t seeing signs of damage, you may not have to reseal for 10 or even 20 years.
High traffic areas that need to be cleaned often will need a reseal every 6 to 12 months.
Not sure if your grout needs a reseal? Here are some things to look out for.
- Film Coatings: Film coatings or surface sealers will show cracking and chipping that will appear in spots. When these spots become obvious, it’s time for a reseal.
- Penetrating Sealers: If you have a deeper penetrating sealant on your gout, you will start to see a darkening of the grout. This means that dirt has penetrated the sealer and become lodged in the grout. As soon as you see a darkening, you should call in a professional. This problem will only get worse in time.
DIY vs. Calling in Professionals
When grout starts to look grimy, you can reseal it yourself or you can call in a professional. Professionals usually include resealing in grout cleaning services. They will get the job done quickly ensuring you will be happy with the outcome.
If you feel confident enough to take the job on yourself, start by cleaning the grout with a cleaner strong enough to kill the mold. Bleach or hydrogen peroxide is recommended.
Apply the sealant according to directions. Be sure to wipe the excess off tiles and allow them to dry at least 24 hours.
Sealant plays a major role in keeping your grout looking its best. Keep mold, dirt, and mildew out by resealing on a regular basis. Then look forward to a clean tiled look you can enjoy for years to come.
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