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rolltrain 01-09-2008 04:48 PM

Grout/caulking. Not sure where to start
My daughter's bathroom tub has tile on the wall, and there is a little discoloration so my wife starts telling me I need to caulk it. (Ooops, 1st things 1st. I am not some big time handy man. Not stupid, just have never done home repirs.) Anyway, shes yellin at me to caulk around the tub because " if we let it keep leaking (?), it will rot. So I finally go get all the stuff, caulk, caulk gun, caulk removal tool and caulk soother too. I get in and start trying to remove the old discolored caulk and realize it's not caulk, it's grout. So I just put caulk on top of the grout. It didn't go so smoothly. Actually it was nasty looking. So I cleaned it all up and now I don't know what to do. I have searched the web site and can't figure anything out. I can't believe I really need to dog out the grout, cause it is only three years old. She thinks since it is porus, water is getting through the grout and thats why we need caulk. Anyway, I think you can figure out my dilema. Any suggestions?

ToolGuy 01-09-2008 05:56 PM

Clean it up real good, making sure to get rid of any soap film, and let it copmletely dry. Then use clear silicone caulk in all the inside corners, where wall meets wall and wall meets tub. While you're at it, it doesn't hurt to caulk around the plumbing handles, spout, etc.

The trick is to cut just a tiny bit from the caulk tip, and apply a small bead. Keep a dry rag handy to wipe your finger, as you'll want to use your WET finger tip to smooth it down.

Make sure to finger smooth each line as soon as you apply it, and don't go back to try to re-smooth any of it, as silicone caulk forms a skin within minutes of applying it.

By the way, if there is mold developing I find X-14 the best product for removing it.

Hack 01-10-2008 11:13 AM

ToolGuy's got you covered for the most part...

My tub had cracks around the base at the floor, as well as at the top edge of the tub where it meets the wall. I think they forgot to fill the tub when they grouted the floor to the tub and the tile wall to the tub. (settles the tub in place)

The only other option is to re-grout. This is NOT for the faint of heart. You'd need a grout saw to remove the old grout and then re-grout with new stuff. I've done it once, and will probably never do it again.

inspectorD 01-11-2008 06:08 AM

Sounds silly but....
I just want to add...when I caulk between the tub and tile, I fill the tub half with water. That way it helps the caulk to be at its inbetween point when someone takes a bath, or shower. The caulk does not have to make the one big to speak.:D

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