How Many Coats of Grout Sealer Must Be Used on Tile Walls?

The final step in tiling a wall, as well as part of its regular upkeep, is applying a protective sealant to your grout. The sealant keeps the grout looking new for years to come back and reduces maintenance work. If you do not apply enough sealant, however, it cannot do its job, so more than just one coat is necessary.

Prime Purpose

Sealer prevents stains and, more importantly, stops water from penetrating the grout and reaching the wall behind it. Water absorbed to the grout can cause it to crumble over time and creates a breeding ground for mold and mildew. This is especially important for shower walls, because they’re subject to running water, however additionally it is vital for tiled walls in bathrooms and other locations.

Timing Is Everything

Sealer shouldn’t be applied until the grout has had a opportunity to cure. This usually takes about 48 hours. The grout and tile adhesive should also be completely dry. For walls which are not subject to continuous moisture, wait about 48 hours, however also for bathtub walls which have been in use, wait five days for the surface behind the shingles to become fully dry. Sealing water behind the shingles can result in serious issues.

Proper Preparation

Any dirt or mildew present if the flux is applied will be permanently adhered to the grout, so it is vital to clean the grout meticulously before spreading the sealant. Cleaning is also the ideal time to look for any damaged sections of grout which are loose, crumbling or peeling. Make any necessary repairs and allow the mended grout cure before applying sealant.

Coat It Again

Two coats of sealant are appropriate for many tiled walls. Use additional coats when the grout is still consuming water or wax. Apply a thin first coat using an applicator or toothbrush, wipe off any surplus and then allow it to dry. The following day, apply a second thin coat, remove the surplus and await it to dry. Spray a little bit of water to a test area and check for beading. If the water beads up on the grout or conducts down without consuming, two coats are sufficient. If the water is absorbed, then apply extra thin coats until the grout doesn’t absorb water.

Repeat as Needed

Most sealants do not offer lasting protection. They must be reapplied regularly, usually about once each year, before the original application deteriorates. You can apply sealant more often, about every six months, to keep the grout in pristine state.

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