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The Importance of Sealing Grout

Posted on October 27th, 2017 by

For homeowners in Vista, tile flooring is an extremely popular option for kitchens and bathrooms. However, you may not realize how important it is to seal the grout between the tiles, no matter what type of tile you have. Whether you have stone or ceramic tile, sealing the grout is an essential and easy form of maintenance that keeps your floor looking and performing its best. 

Grout Is Porous

The most common type of grout used for tile flooring is made from cement, a very porous material that readily absorbs liquids. This means the grout in your floors will be vulnerable to bacteria, mold, and stains, even if the tile itself is impenetrable. All colored liquids will quickly stain the unsealed grout, even if you’re quick to wipe up the spill. Pet accidents and oil can also penetrate the grout and darken it. You may even be left with unpleasant odors that are impossible to get rid of without replacing the grout. Without sealing, grout is basically a sponge waiting for any type of liquid. 

Sealing the Grout Extends the Life of Your Floor

Beautiful tile floors aren’t cheap. You probably protect other investments like your home’s HVAC system and your vehicle, and the same should be true of your floors. Sealing the grout can extend the life of your floor and keep it looking beautiful. The last thing you want is for your gorgeous floors to be ruined by stained, unsightly grout that can’t be cleaned. Unsealed grout will wear down and fail faster than sealed grout. 

Unsealed Grout Can Harbor Mold

Your tile won’t grow mold, but the same isn’t true for unsealed grout. Because it’s porous, grout can be a breeding ground for mold when it gets wet. When there’s moisture, mold spores can penetrate the grout and flourish. Once this happens, it may be impossible to get rid of the mold without tearing out the grout. Sealing the grout is a simple and effective way to keep mold from gaining a footing on your flooring.

You Don’t Need to Seal Epoxy

Most grout needs to be sealed, but there is an exception. Epoxy grout is incredibly water resistant and nonporous. This type of grout seals itself as it cures. While epoxy grout never needs to be sealed, it can permanently stain your tile during application. Epoxy grout needs to be installed carefully to avoid damaging the floor. 

It’s Easy to Seal Grout

Maintaining beautiful tile flooring isn’t difficult. Once new grout is installed, let it cure for 3 days. It should be dry and clean when you apply the sealer. The best way to seal grout is by applying a liquid sealer using a tiny roller or foam paint brush. Coat the grout lines liberally, making sure to cover all the joints. Do your best to avoid getting sealer on the tiles. If grout sealer gets on the tile, wipe it off right away. Let the first coat soak into the grout for 15 minutes before applying a second coat, then let the sealer cure for 48 hours.

Whether they need new tile flooring or want to inquire about floor refinishing, Vista homeowners can rely on Unique Flooring for all their flooring needs. We carry a wide array of flooring materials, from porcelain tile to vinyl planks. Give us a call today at 760-945-0010 or stop by our showroom to see what we have to offer.

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