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Tile grout replacement is not something many homeowners like to think about. It takes a great deal of time, patience, and money. There are two types of grout available: cement grout and epoxy grout. Epoxy grout is becoming a popular alternative to cement grout because of its durability. But is it the right choice for your tile?
Epoxy grout is non-porous, making it waterproof. Epoxy is very versatile and can look beautiful with almost any decor. After the initial process is completed, it can even last much longer than cement grout.
If you still have more questions about epoxy grout, its cost, how to clean it, and how difficult it is to install, don't fret. In this guide, we'll address all these topics and more. Just keep reading!
Is Epoxy Grout Waterproof?
Epoxy grout is less porous than regular grout. This keeps water from accumulating beneath its surface. Cement grout contains cementitious powder, which can stain after getting wet. It can often lose its pigment after being cleaned, too. Epoxy grout, on the other hand, can withstand extreme environments without staining or shrinking. This type of grout is resilient, sturdy, and durable.
Many homeowners are more familiar with the appearance, cost, and installation of cement grout. Some may love the look of epoxy but not feel confident enough to use it themselves. There's no reason not to take the plunge and try out epoxy grout, though. Professional assistance can be utilized to end with the best result possible.
What Is Epoxy Grout?
Epoxy was first discovered in the 1930s and industrial applications for the product have multiplied ever since then.
Epoxy grout is a stain-proof alternative to cement grout. It's comprised of epoxy resins and a filler powder. The chemical bonds in these resins make them more resistant to abrasive cleaning products. The filler powder gives the mixture a more even color. This makes matching the grout to the tiles rather simple.
The polymer molecules are cross-linked to transform a soft substance into a hardened waterproof material. This is also known as curing.
Is Epoxy Grout More Difficult To Use Than Regular Grout?
Because it hardens so quickly, epoxy grout is more difficult to work with than regular grout. You'll have to apply epoxy grout in stages rather than all at once. Epoxy is a rigid product and requires more time to set up and shape into tile corners. This reactive substance is also sensitive to summer temperatures. Ensure that your surfaces are sealed before grouting because the epoxy has the potential to discolor porous surfaces.
Consult a professional installer if you have no experience working with epoxy. Consider asking for a grout sample board before the installation takes place.
What Is The Cost Of Epoxy Grout Compared to Cement Grout?
Epoxy grout is three to four times as expensive as cement grout. Epoxy grout costs about $6 per pound. Cement grout costs about $1-$2 per pound.
Though more expensive, epoxy grout lasts for a longer period of time and it requires little maintenance. Cement-based compounds require extensive cleaning, repairs, and even tile replacements. Therefore, epoxy grout can save homeowners money in the long run.
Laticrete Epoxy Grout
Epoxy grout offers more elegant colors and styles than traditional grout. Resin is also a popular medium among artists and jewelry makers. A glitter based epoxy can add an iridescent sparkle to kitchen tiles. Some epoxies can even glow in the dark.
Spectra Lock Sparkle Silver
Consumers who do not want to use a color epoxy can brighten dull areas with a special kind of grout. This translucent grout uses tiny glass beads to reflect light and give the surface a clean shimmer.
Starlike Crystal Evo Epoxy Grout
Is Epoxy Grout Suitable For Kitchens And Showers?
Since epoxy grout is water-resistant, it is suitable for showers, kitchens, and other moist areas. A 100% solids epoxy is designed for commercial kitchens, dairies, and meat processing plants. It is even more resistant to high temperatures and chemical compounds. Epoxy is appropriate for any ceramic or any stone tile.
What Is the Best Way to Clean Epoxy Grout?
Before installation, the tiles should be thoroughly cleaned. Epoxy haze often occurs when resins from the cleaning water are transferred to the tile surfaces. After the water evaporates, the epoxy resins remain, leaving clear streaks on the tiles. They may be hard to detect at first.
For visual reference, check out this helpful youtube video:
With epoxy grout that has been installed less than 24 hours ago, follow these simple steps to clean it:
- Mix a quarter cup of vinegar or dishwasher detergent per 3.5 gallons of warm water.
- Apply the solution to the surface with a sponge and scour the affected areas.
- Add silica sand to the mixture if the tiles do not scratch easily.
- Rinse if necessary.
- If this process does not lift the haze, then you should use epoxy grout film remover or H20 Stripper.
- A quick spray of bleach or a combination of vinegar and baking soda will keep the area sanitized.
- Cover all of the grout and wait 15 minutes before wiping it off.
What Are Some Common Problems With Epoxy Grout?
The upfront expense and application process of epoxy grout may intimidate some homeowners. Even the smallest mistakes may ruin the entire project.
Yellowing can occur to light-colored grouts if exposed to sunlight or cleaning compounds that contain carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Restoring a discolored area is costly and time-consuming. Epoxy does give off a glossy shine after it has completely cured. If you do not like a plastic appearance, then epoxy grout may not be a good option for you.
If an epoxy resin grout is installed correctly, it will last a lifetime. It gives areas a clean, polished look that cannot be achieved with traditional grout. Epoxy provides more design and color options for all types of classic, minimal, or even eccentric styles. There is always a new and fun way to customize your own personal space!
Before you go, be sure to check out these other home guides that may be of interest: