How to choose a grout for tile joints

The final stage of working with tiles – grouting – is often given little attention. It seems that the main work has already been done, the tiles are laid, and the seams are a trifle. In fact, it is the grout that will be the finishing touch for the decor of the tiled floor, walls in the bathroom and the kitchen apron..

How to choose a grout for tile joints

Now there are two main types of grout for tile joints – cement and epoxy. Let’s deal with their main advantages and disadvantages..

Cement grout

The grout, which is based on cement, was created and patented by the Briton Joseph Aspdin back in 1824. There are two types of cementitious grout:

  1. Based on Portland cement, which got its name from its color similarity to stone that was mined on the island of Portland in the United Kingdom.
  2. Cement-sand mixture, which includes sand in addition to Portland cement.

Cement grout for tiles

Important! There are two types of cement grout – for narrow joints – up to 5 millimeters, and wide. Be sure to pay attention to this factor.!

For wide seams, it is cement-sand mixtures that are used, and the wider the seam, the larger the grains of sand should be, which will not allow the composition to crack over time.

How to choose a grout for tile joints

Advantages of cement grouts:

  1. Low price.
  2. Versatility in application – the mixture is suitable for different surfaces and types of tiles.
  3. Ease of use – even a non-professional who makes repairs for the first time can handle.
  4. A fairly wide selection of colors. However, for cement-sand grout, the color scheme is usually more modest..

Grouting tile joints

Disadvantages of cement grout:

  1. It is destroyed under the influence of household chemicals, therefore, if used on a kitchen apron, which will have to be washed often, it can quickly lose all its qualities.
  2. Not resistant to dirt, absorbs water, unable to protect against mold and mildew.
  3. Over time, it can lose color and begin to crack.

Cement grouts are sold ready-made, in plastic buckets, or as a dry powder that should be diluted with water or latex. The second option is convenient in that you can use the right amount of grout, and store the rest in a bag-packing in a dry place, it will not lose its properties.

Colored grout for tiles

Epoxy grout

Unlike cement grout, epoxy grout always consists of two components: epoxy resin and hardeners. Coloring pigments are also added. This is a more modern option, which was previously used for grouting tile joints mainly in production rooms, laboratories, that is, where the environment is especially aggressive.

Epoxy grout for tiles

Advantages of epoxy grout:

  1. Much more resistant than cement, it is not afraid of chemical irritants, even acids. That is why it is an ideal option for arranging a pool, which it was decided to lay out with mosaics or tiles..
  2. The color does not fade over time, the decorative properties are much higher. You can pick up very bright options, for example, with glitter, imitation of gilding, and so on..
  3. Durability – can last up to 40 years.
  4. Waterproof, moisture will definitely not get into the seams between the tiles, so it will last longer.

Applying epoxy grout

Disadvantages of epoxy grout:

  1. Such a mixture is much more expensive than cement, therefore, in the case of budget repairs, it is rarely bought..
  2. Epoxy grout is much more difficult to work with. It is distinguished by high viscosity, quickly solidifies, therefore, most likely, you will have to resort to the services of a professional.

Usually, grouting for joints is already sold in a certain color, and epoxy has richer colors – they can even be transparent, which is appreciated when laying bright mosaic panels.

Color palette of grout mixes

What to be guided by when choosing a grout color? The classic is white, which is suitable for all options, except for flooring, where white seams will get dirty very quickly.

Designers remind that a bright grout will emphasize all the irregularities and imperfections of the tiled masonry, so this option can only be used in the case of perfectly laid tiles. No need for a bright grout and where there are already decorative accents, for example, a panel or tile with a noticeable pattern.

Color mosaic grout

Experts emphasize that ready-made colored grout will be more resistant and of high quality than those to which the color was added independently. In this case, the tile joints may begin to lose their original shade over time. Smoothing the unevenness of the masonry and creating the appearance of a seamless surface can be a grout that matches the color of the tile as accurately as possible. Therefore, this option of grouting to match the color of the main finish is very popular..

Epoxy Mosaic Grout

In any case, when choosing the color of the grout, you should be guided by your own taste, because you will have to use this bathroom and walk on the tiled floor in the hallway. It is interesting that, according to the designers, a durable and well-chosen grout can transform even a bathroom lined with Soviet nondescript tiles. This is an inexpensive way to update the appearance of an apron in the kitchen or bathroom..

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