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Flooring and Carpeting/used wrong grout on floor


Dear Mr. Vellenga:  

We are redoing our bathroom and my husband gave our contractor what he believed to be the floor grout we used in our other two bathrooms.  Same porcelain tile used in all three, and grout was to match the other baths.  Contractor had a devil of a time using it and said there was virtually no sand in the grout.....very pasty, hard to clean up, but my husband assured him it was same grout we used in our other two baths.  He finally got the grout in and subdued and also used a sealer mixed with the grout.  Today, after drying, I noted that grout was completely different color and was not the same as we had used before.  My husband went to retrieve the bag and then I pointed out to him that it clearly says, "nonsanded grout".  It was, in fact, the grout remaining from the wall tile in our other bathroom.  So....needless to say, we are in a dilemma.  How will this wall grout perform on the floor over time with the sealer in as far as cracking etc.  Also, since the color is not what I wanted to achieve, our contractor says he can shave off the top of the wrong grout to about 1/2 depth and re-grout over with a correct sanded grout.  I'm sure every time I go into the bathroom those white lines will be staring back at me.  Bathroom is almost complete today and tomorrow and now must make a decision about re-grouting the floor and the dust and mess it will now cause to the new fittings/fixtures/bead board.  

Can you let me know how the wall grout will perform on the floor and also the "fix" to a corrected sanded grout and color be for the mess it will create, or is that a reasonable fix?  Our contractor is very good, a neighbor and a friend and has done other projects for us.  So, trust his judgement.

Thank you for your question Janet...

   Supplanting a sanded grout application with a non-sanded example is not going to be satisfactory at all. The non-sanded one will tend to settle and shrink excessively lowering the level of the grout within the joint itself. I have to point out though Janet that as an installer I "always" check the material products I am about to use prior to committing to its use and if I have the bag in my hand I am going to read what it says so your contractor here is somewhat at fault even if he is everything you say he is to you guys. Having pointed out that fact here you are. Fortunately what you currently have in the joint is not as hard and it's sanded cousin so it should simply be removed to at least the depth of the tile itself so however "thick" the tile is that is the goal depth to be reached in order for the sanded grout to have enough volume to sustain itself within the joint. Now the mess (to some degree) can not be avoided but most of it can be controlled by draping visqueen in the area being worked in from the ceiling and held down to the floor. Be sure to tape off any floor or ceiling vents so they stay clean of dust and debris. It's unfortunate Janet that this has happened but with patience and additional hard work things should work out just fine...ok? That's it I hope this helps you with your problem, feel free to return anytime...

Perry V.

Flooring and Carpeting

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Perry Vellenga


Ceramic Tile/Marble. I can answer questions about floor preparation, tile selection, layout questions, performance of products, expectations of finish, compatabilities, questions about grout and epoxies, evaluating an installer, asking the right questions to check competence...more? 33 years this August 2012/ many years in commercial application from exterior finishes to Mall store fronts/ interior finishes like floor packages in stores inside Malls examples: The Limited, Lerner/NY, Lane Bryants, Bombay Co., Now involved in Residential new construction covering all types of interior finishes and designs.


I worked in an exclusive field of floorcovering called "Tenant Development" which is by invitational bid only, by way of a National bid list. These are large floor packages usually over 3500 sq. ft. of 18" x 18" Marble and Granite and many other types of Marble and sizes. They are specialty stores where the floor package can cost upwards of $50,000 for one store. I have also done "Structure" stores and J. Riggins stores, Lane Bryant,Express and Body Shop stores where wood flooring is used. Presently work for a National Flooring Company in the Residential new construction arena that covers most interior design elements..Granite Slab tops/wood flooring both job finished and prefinished ect..

My response's are published all across the Internet and picked up by multiple Interior Design sites and Industry related web sites where people have questions...

too many most of which don't count...

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