Removing Grout Haze On New Carrara Marble Tile Installation

We put in on the shower walls, ceiling, bathroom floors and 1/2 up on some of the walls. But acidic foods/products like vinegar will etch marble and shouldn’t be used for cleaning marble. Now if the marble tile has a rough honed or tumbled finish you wouldn’t notice the etching as much as on a polished surface, but you still shouldn’t use vinegar or any other acidic product on it. Not an issue with countertops since their underside is exposed.
Best Way To Clean Tiles Grout 3 Experiments & Comparisons | How To Clean Tiles Grout | Duration 4 Minutes 15 Seconds The common wisdom is that you shouldn’t seal stone in a wet environment like a shower since moisture could get trapped in the stone leading to degradation of the stone. Most grout haze removers are acidic and will etch the marble dulling the surface and ruining the finish. You can start cleaning it right after the grout lines dry. I tested a small area today with a regular cloth and it wasn’t going anywhere! While sealing the grout, a lot of sealer has marked the tiles. Now, if your grout is a dark color, then it can be advantageous to apply a sealer before grouting to keep the grout color from absorbing into the edges and discoloring the marble. If these deposits are close enough to the surface, they can be oxidized by water absorbed during a shower creating a rust stains. This water will evaporate, so sealing against it isn’t needed. We accented it with the opposite, black tile with white veins. He told me to wash the walls down with 1 part white vinegar and 5 parts warm water before he comes by to remove all the residue of the grout. Etching is corrosion that eats at the marble destroying the shiny polished layer and exposing the more dull marble underneath so you get dull and light discolored spots. Means the marble will not readily absorb anything else either and will be very difficult to stain. You should wait at least 2-3 weeks before you seal any stone installation on a wall or floor to allow plenty of time for all moisture to evaporate from the stone and grout. Typically bathrooms aren’t at much risk for staining, so sealing isn’t that necessary especially in the marble shower. Plus, do you drink a lot of coffee and wine in the shower? All you need to do is perform the water test to determine if you should or shouldn’t seal the marble vanity.

Lazy Granite Tile For Kitchen Countertops | Duration 4 Minutes 17 Seconds It can often help, but not always successful, so not a great reason to go through the much more troublesome process of sealing prior to grouting vs. But most likely, you are using a light or white color grout. Water absorbing during a shower is not an issue for any other stone.

Vanities by

Below, we’ve listed and explained the most common options we encounter for bathroom vanity tops and their benefits and drawbacks. Don’t forget to visit our bathroom backsplash page for tips on how to accessorize and accentuate your vanity. This pore-free material won’t harbor bacteria or stain, and it can be cleaned with just about any household cleaner. Unlike natural stone countertops, most porcelain tiles are virtually pore-free, so they never need to be sealed and will never stain. Granite tiles have far more grout lines than other options, and if set improperly can result in an uneven surface. Many ceramic lines come with prefabricated edging that make finishing your installation easy. Since bathroom countertops experience less abuse than kitchen countertops, you have a lot more freedom in what you can do and what materials you can use. However, keep in mind the use the bathroom will get when selecting materials. This could be a great do-it-yourself craft project for creative individuals and weekend warriors. With a natural stone or through-body porcelain, you can polish the edge of the tile to create a soft, professional-looking transition. Regular cement-based grout can stain or mildew if it isn’t sealed well. Ask us which grout option would work best for your countertop. This is by far the most expensive countertop option; but with no grout lines and the option of undermount sinks, solid surface countertops are a clean, elegant option. Make sure you use a cleaner specific to your natural stone to extend its lifetime and maintain its beauty. Solid surface quartz countertops are becoming increasingly popular due to their high durability and the fact that they don’t require sealing. While a quartz countertop is one of the most durable and sanitary options for a bathroom counter, it is also usually the most expensive. You can use any household cleaner on them, and commercial-grade porcelain is up to 30% stronger than granite! While ceramic tiles are not recommended for kitchen countertops because they are a weaker tile option, they perform well in bathrooms and are very easy to keep clean. We would not recommend easily-scratchable glass tiles or easily-stained natural stone for a child’s bathroom, for example, while these materials would be fine in a master bathroom. Will the sink be the focal point, or should it blend into the countertop material? If you utilize a tile option for your counters, you will need some way to finish off the edge.

How To Grout Uneven Tile Tile Help | Duration 2 Minutes 55 Seconds These tiles are usually 3″ or 4″ tall with a long, rounded-over side and are used to finish off outside corners and edges. We can polish tiles for you or you can rent a polisher for a do-it-yourself installation. On a well-used bathroom vanity (where you could have spilled make-up, toothpaste, soap, or small water puddles) your grout can take a lot of abuse.

Kitchen Counter Tile Options by

Widely popular granite slabs are the dream of many folks; however, they tend to be quite costly. Options range from the same coveted granite and marble that many slabs are fabricated from to more common ceramic and porcelain tile. This tile is 18″ x 21″, more than 2½ times the size of a basic 12″x12″ tile. When paired with the large tile above, only a single grout line is needed from the front to the back of a standard counter. This installation method works best for small areas, as the level of precision involved needs to be maintained for the entire area. We want something that looks nice, is durable and easy to keep clean and doesn’t cost as much as a new car. Smart choices in tile selection and installation will give you a work surface capable of handling just about anything. The goal for most homeowners is a surface that’s both durable and attractive. You can get the same durability and a great look with kitchen counter tile. Some of these large tiles can reach the full depth of the counter, needing just a special front bull-nosed tile. Larger tiles mean fewer grout lines, and a surface that is easier to keep clean. Here is a 3″-wide bull-nosed kitchen counter tile that is 24″ long. These can be of the same glaze and finish, as pictured below, or in a contrasting color or pattern. Most professional installers will advise against groutless installations for many reasons. To keep nasty germs from living in the near-invisible gaps, a sealer or adhesive should be used between tiles. Very narrow 1/32″–1/16″ grout lines are also nice-looking and easy to install, by comparison. If you’d prefer to go the professional route, find an expert tile contractor to install your kitchen countertop.

Grout Joint Size by

Granite Tile Countertops And Decorative Back Slash | Duration 4 Minutes 46 Seconds However, it is important to recognize and make the end user aware of some important points. Even when the caulk exactly matches the grout color when installed, it may not match six months later (caulk will “age” differently from the grout). Mold may grow more easily on caulk (except caulk treated with mildewcide) than on grout. Silicone, urethane, or multi-polymer caulks are better choices but can be harder to apply. Often times the bond between tiles is stronger than the tile itself. First, most installers find it harder to use than cementitious grout. Also, it is much more difficult to shape and slope; this can be done easily with cementitious grout and is often needed to transition from one tile to another. Lastly, it generally takes days longer to cure and must be kept rigorously clean. Epoxy thinsets offer greater bond strength and chemical resistance than polymer modified cementitious thinset. Typically, they are only used to bond to difficult substrates or where extraordinary chemical resistance is needed. There are many things that can cause excessive deflection in your subfloor (and consequent cracking in the tile) or you may have a perfectly sound subfloor but not have prepared the floor properly for tile. Were expansion joints used in the installation to allow for normal movement? There are several things that can cause cracked grout and we would be guessing as to the cause. If insufficient force is used while grouting wall tile, it is easy to “bridge” the joint where the grout does not penetrate to the back of the joint. Grout made with an excessive amount of water or polymer additive. Iif water is added to the mix after the grout begins curing in the bucket, the grout will be sufficiently plastic to pack but will not cure into a hard homogeneous block – rather it will be crumbly and weak. Therefore, you can see this can be difficult to assess without an on-site inspection.

How To Grout Tile Correct Technique Makes It Easy | Duration 5 Minutes 16 Seconds The plywood sheets should be run with the long side perpendicular to the joists (both layers). The grout should be very dry and well packed into the joints. Generally, grout fails because of movement of the substrate or improper mixing and installation of grout. The best method is to screw and glue the two sheets together. We are often asked what is the standard for determining the size of a grout joint – can it be bigger or smaller – does it need to be a specific size, etc. You will see that it is not specific; however this is the only part of the standard addressing joint spacing. In general, there is not a specific standard for the size of a grout joint. Ultimately, the project owner should choose the grout joint they desire, keeping in mind that a tighter grout joint will show more variation from tile to tile. Also, grout accommodates differences in the angle of the surface. When tiling over a hump, the grout joint opens up; and when tiling across a depression, the top of the grout joint narrows. Joints larger that 3/8″ usually need a more heavily sanded grout to accommodate the large joint. For the exact amounts to add, you should check with the manufacturer of the grout you plan to use. Tile spacing is measured between tile edges – not from the top edge of the bevel on the tile. The bevel is often a glazed surface which is intended to transition from one tile to another. Even small variations can throw off the pattern of the tile if adjustments are not made in the grout joint. Grout must adjust for these differences between tiles so understandably there can be some variation in the width of a grout joint. A smaller joint will exacerbate the differences between tiles as the human eye can readily see very small differences as a percentage of the total grout joint. As the plane of the tile changes, the grout joint allows for this change. What is causing my grout to have variations in color? Also, how uneven the color appears can be somewhat subjective. The easiest colors to work with are the medium grays and beiges as opposed to bright colors, whites, blacks, etc. Improper cleaning of the grout and grout haze off the tile (usually by wiping too soon and with too much water). Having the thinset adhesive fill part of the joint and showing through. Mixing partial bags (this is a problem if the colorant is not evenly distributed). Dirty tools or shoes that stain the grout (we have actually had that happen to us, where workers tracked in clay on their shoes). Curing time is on the bag but can be up to three days for some grout. In many cases it is hard to tell exactly what went wrong by looking at the tilework. One can always remove the grout and replace it if that is the only acceptable solution. Uneven grout color is not uncommon, although in this case, the darkening may be caused by water (more about that later). Is there a standard that addresses color variations in grout? In other words, the grout must be removed before the color has a chance to set. Grout colorants work best with grout that has not been sealed. The edge of the tile also makes a difference in the success of the colorant – tiles with well-delineated edges are easier to treat than tiles with a large bevel or textured edge. The easier it is to remove from the tile (and the better it sticks to the grout), determines in part how good the finished result appears. On the plus side, grout colorants usually seal the grout in addition to changing its color. The type of tile greatly affects the difficulty of grout removal. In general, the more porous the surface, the better grout will adhere. To remove the grout, start with an alkaline cleaner and a nylon scrub pad. Normal floor tile will not be affected by a using a scrub pad, but some decorative tiles do not have the same surface hardness. If the scrub pad is not effective, there are specialty cleaners on the market that chemically attack the grout. What is the difference between epoxy grout and mortar and conventional grout and mortar? How do you remove grout that is adhered to a tile floor? Technically, anywhere there is a change in substrate or backing surface such as the joint between walks and floor and wall joint, caulk should be used in place of grout since these surfaces move independently of each other. However, when grout is used in place of caulk, the grout can cause structural and aesthetic problems. Where the grout is sufficiently strong, movement in the walls, floor, or countertop can damage the tile. In summary, caulk is the better choice, but the customer needs to understand its limitations. We are often asked about epoxy grout and mortar versus conventional grout and mortar. Made from epoxy resins and a filler powder, the grout is extremely hard, durable, and nearly stain proof. You might wonder why this type of grout is not used all the time. Also, it has a more plastic appearance which, as with all matters of aesthetics, some people like and some don’t. It may also slump in the joint hours after the floor is finished because the grout becomes less viscous initially as it heats up and cures. And it can cost three to eight times as much as cementitious grout. This performance comes at a price as epoxy thinset is much more expensive than regular thinset. Are there any cracked, rotted, or termite damaged joists? Are any dimensionally unstable or questionable materials also in the tile/subfloor/joist sandwich? It could be that a field inspection is needed to determine why your grout is cracking. This movement can cause the grout to crack, and if sufficiently severe, can cause tile to crack. This is especially true if sanded grout is used in joints narrower than 1/8″. The liquid that goes into the grout ultimately must evaporate (except for that consumed by cement hydration). The adhesive needs to coverage at least 80% in the dry areas. The joints should not be flooded with water when they are being cleaned. At least 2/3 by depth of the old grout needs to be removed when replacing or repairing grout. What is the standard for determining the size of a grout joint? However, there are many relevant parameters that should be considered. What is the surface of the tile; can it be easily scratched? Many people feel that a joint smaller than three times the average variation from tile to tile (or two times the maximum variation) tends to look irregular and poorly installed. Where the floor or wall is not level, the grout will slope from one tile to another. For cementitious grout, joints smaller than 1/8″ generally should only be grouted with unsanded grout, and joints of 1/8″ and larger should only be grouted with sanded grout. Some manufacturers sell a “wide joint” mix (for joints bigger than 3/8″), but you can make the same thing by adding coarse sand to regular grout. The majority of tile made today has a beveled edge and grout should not be installed on the bevel. On some tiles, the installer must “hand-tool” the grout to keep grout off the bevel. Often, the finished results look sloppy due to variations in the floor or wall and in the tile. Although 1/16″ of an inch may seem unimportant (for example, on a 12″ tile), it represents a 50% variation in a grout joint 1/8 inch wide. What is the standard for variations in grout joints? For example, while a difference of a 1/16″ of an inch may seem small on a 12″ tile, this is readily apparent compared to a 1/8″ grout joint. Perhaps due to these variables, there is not a numerical standard to which the tile grout joint must conform. As such, variations in the substrate will be reflected in the tile layer, unless additional leveling is performed. Uneven grout color is not normal, but there can be a number of things that can cause blotchy grout. Since most grout is cement based, it tends to turn gray with time and cleaning. Improper mixing of the grout by using an improper amount of water. Using grout from a bag that was previously opened (and gained moisture during storage). Sometimes the tile itself can have a microporoisty (small pores in the tile body, especially with porcelain tile) condition that sucks the moisture out of the grout too fast or in an irregular pattern. The color of the grout in my shower is inconsistent and in some areas the grout is a darker color? This is in part because some colors are more prone to uneven color than others due to the dyes used. Where absolute color uniformity is desired, epoxy grouts are often recommended (they are much more expensive though) as they cure and clean up differently from cementitious grout. Also, depending on the tile, it may be impossible to allow the grout to sufficiently cure for best color uniformity and still remove it from the tile. Unfortunately, with regular cementitious grout, there is little that can be done once the grout is in place except for attempting to use a grout colorant. Grout treated with a colorant also has a different texture than originally colored grout. Typically, grout that has been treated with a colorant does not need to be sealed. Removing grout that is adhered to a tile floor can be difficult. Also, if the grout was polymer modified, it may be more difficult to remove. Make sure to check that the scrub pad is not damaging the tile. Always check the tile in an inconspicuous spot first in case the cleaner affects the tile.

How To Grout Granite Countertop Tiles by

The standard tile spacing is at least twice that space—1/8th inch. Push the tiles together until they are tight against the spacers. Remove the spacers, and allow the mortar 24 hours to set before you proceed with the next step. Stir the mixture slowly, by using a stirring stick or broad putty knife. After the mortar is thoroughly mixed, allow 10 minutes for chemicals in the grout to activate. The idea is to force the grout into the spaces between the tiles and that the top surface of the grout is level with the top surface of the tiles when you finish. Then, use a moist sponge to wipe away any grout left on the tile surface. When you’re finished cleaning the tiles, check to be sure the grout in the spaces is still level with the tile surface. As the grout dries, wipe it again several times with the damp sponge, until the haze has been completely removed. To create this look, granite countertop tiles, as they are installed, are to be separated by only 1/16 inch. To keep the mortar from seeping up into spaces between the tiles, make sure the mortar is thin and is void of lumps or mounds. Stirring too fast can create air bubbles in the mortar, so avoid using a power mixer. Be careful to avoid disturbing or reducing the grout in the tile spaces. Using a slightly damp, clean sponge, wipe the tiles to remove any grout film or haze. After 48 hours, the tile and grout should be fully set and ready to use.

Grout Lines: How To Determine What Size Grout Line To Use by

These tiles usually are spaced with grout lines 3/16 inch or wider. This technique produces a floor that looks like a single slab. They have small protrusions called lugs that fit against adjoining tiles and create an automatic space for grout, normally 1/32 to 1/16 inch wide. Special types, such as slate or quarry tiles, often do not have edges uniform enough to look good with tight spacing. Grout lines on walls usually do not exceed 1/16 inch because the tiles need to be stacked to help support them during installation.

How To Install Marble Tiles by

Remove any excess dirt with a nylon or iron brush, straighten out all the uneven areas and fill any cracks. Once the surface is as clean and smooth as you can get it, you will need to identify the proper starting point with guidelines to assist in a straight and symmetrical layout. However, for larger tiles and irregular tumbled or natural cleft materials, you’ll need to use a ½” notched trowel to create larger, deeper grooves in the adhesive. Remember, because the adhesives dry so quickly, it’s wise to only cover a small area of the substrate at a time and immediately attach the tiles before moving on and adding more. A small twist will help the adhesive bond more tightly to the tile. The tiles will probably not fit perfectly once you reach the wall, so take note of any gaps to custom cut pieces with a wet saw later. After finishing this step, apply another layer of sealant to protect the grout. You want the substrate to be as smooth and clean as possible before attaching the tiles. You want to install the tiles from the center point of the room so that they radiate outward instead of abruptly going from one wall to the next. Doing this will indicate the center of the room while also dividing it into four neat quadrants. There’s no need to mix all the mortar immediately, so only make a small amount and then continue making more as you need it. For marble tiles 12″ square or smaller, a ¼” notched trowel is suitable. Use a rubber mallet to lightly tap the marble tile firmly into place. Once you have three or more tiles in place next to one another, you can place a 2×4 over the tiles and gently tap the rubber mallet on it to ensure that the tiles are all the same height. Using a tile spacer will assist in maintaining uniform grout lines. Be sure not to step on the freshly-laid tiles until after they have dried, so the quadrant closest to the door is the one you finish last. After the mortar completely dries based on the manufacturer’s instructions, use a paint stick or a utility knife to remove any excess mortar that might have seeped up in the spaces between the tiles. This step should be done before the grouting process since the grout mix can stain the tiles. Use a grout float to apply the grout to the joints, and be careful to keep as much of it in the grooves as possible while quickly wiping up any that gets on the tiles. Depending how much foot traffic the room gets, applying a marble sealant once or twice a year is a good way to keep the tiles looking shiny and new.

Tile Countertop and Backsplash Questions by

Most tile installers prefer to finish the grout job in one trip. Just keep some grout in an air-tight package for the inevitable touchup down the road! Then the grout begins to break out in the counter/tile joint as expansion/contraction between the dissimilar materials puts stress on the grout line. The cost of the job increases if caulking is involved since she has to make at least one additional trip after the grout dries to apply the caulk. First, during tile installation, leave a small space between the tiles and the wood surface or countertop… no more than 1/8 of an inch. Of course there is a third alternative… you can do the job like “the pros” and grout the entire job. Sometimes the appearance of the caulk is not acceptable making periodic regrouting preferable… the home repair equivalent of “planned obsolescence”. Latex caulks can be successfully applied 24-48 hours after grouting while silicone caulks need full drying, so a wait of at least 3-5 days is preferable for proper adhesion. They include a stronger mildewcide and are more water resistant.

Marble Tile Installation by

For flooring, when installing on a concrete slab, clean the area thoroughly with a wet sponge to remove any stubborn dirt or grime. Install marble tiles to walls by first attaching a 1/4” tile backer board (or what your building code requiers) with adhesive and screws every 6 inches both vertically and horizontally. Starting at the center of the room and working your way outward, lay down one row of tile along the reference line. Once you have decided on the tile layout, mix the adhesive, also called mortar or thin-set, that is recommended for your tile. Using a notched trowel, apply thin-set to a small area on the floor for installation. Creating grooves will increase the strength of the adhesive. Repeat this processes, working with one tile at a time, until you reach the wall. Also, use tile spacers to keep the layout consistent, as well as create uniform grout lines. Continue the tile installation by returning to the center point and laying out the second row of tile adjacent to the first. You will also need to fit tiles around architectural features in the room, as well as permanent appliances and equipment. Carefully measure and make a straight line with a pencil on marble tiles prior to cutting. Allow to dry the recommended period (often not too long) before wiping grout off the surface. Fill a bucket with warm clean water and dampen a sponge to clean the excess grout away from the grout lines. Clean the entire surface with water, repeating as necessary, to remove all grout from the tops of the tiles. Apply a tile sealer, made specifically for marble, according to manufacturer’s instructions. For installation over wood sub-floors, make sure area is free from dirt and grime. Blend and adjust the tile placement until you achieve an optimal look. Use the notched edge of the trowel to create grooves in the thin-set. To continue the installation process spread the thin-set on one tile and place it where desired. To keep the placement straight, use the reference lines as a guide. Once you reach the wall, take note of any odd angles or gaps that require custom cut pieces. If a wet saw is unable to make a specific cut, use a 4-inch grinder to cut curves, cutouts, or hard to reach angles. Mix slowly until you reach a creamy consistency that remains fairly stationary on your grout float. Do not wait too long – if the grout dries too much, it will make cleanup much more difficult. Apply as many coats as it takes until the marble tile and the grout stops absorbing the sealer.

Kitchen Countertops: How To Choose A Countertop Surface by

Choosing the right countertop surface is also about practicality, and personality too – yours, and what reflects you and your sense of home. While the large selection may seem overwhelming, it gives you the opportunity to choose the perfect countertop material to enhance the beauty of your home and reflect your personal style. Most are 1/2-inch thick and made of acrylic, polyester and fillers. The material is sensitive to heat, so avoid placing hot pots or pans directly on the surface. Routine maintenance may be required and if you aren’t careful you could easily scratch the marble. It can be tinted almost any color making it fully customizable, and can easily withstand heat. They have an extensive choice of colors and patterns and can be easily installed and maintained. Edges are built up with two or three layers of material for a thicker appearance. It has the 2nd highest hardness rating after diamonds and will hold up very well against heat. Not frequently used, so will give your space an original look. Additionally, it’s porous and stains easily unless professionally sealed on a regular basis. Stainless also shows fingerprints and smudges easily so may difficult to keep spotless. Quartz countertops are almost complete rock, constructed of nearly 100% quartz. They are also mold resistant and quite resistant to bacteria as well. It also tends to skew on the more expensive side of countertop options.

Basic Questions About Granite and Granite Installation by

Granite is a natural stone composed of several large mineral grains which are tightly packed. When price shopping, consider granite’s durability, damage-resistance and beauty when comparing it to the more fragile and less durable options on the market today. You can hire a professional granite fabricator or try one of the do-it-yourself kits. However, some types of damage may need a professional’s experience to make them as invisible as possible. Granite can have small pits that are visible to the eye and can be felt. It is not uncommon to see and/or feel some small pits on the surface of granite slabs. In fact, placement of seams can be one of the most vexing parts of countertop planning. Sometimes the layout of the countertop allows the fabricator to place the seam in the center of the sink cutout which exposes the minimal amount of seam to the eye. These slabs, with the visually filled lines, do not break or crack once they are installed, with proper care. As with the pitting mentioned in the prior section, if you are a perfectionist and do not want any imperfections, then you should choose another type of stone. The standard overhang is 1 ½” from the face frame of the cabinets. You can compare this to the 1″ overhang typical of the laminate countertops you are looking to replace with granite. Having the cabinets not installed in a straight line is not an uncommon problem. For example, your fabricator can extend the 3 cm granite countertops up to a maximum of 8″ from the cabinets unsupported. We have to be careful when we install upper bar tops that sit on a 5″ knee wall. Any granite countertops with more than an 8″ overhang should be adequately supported by steel braces. The placement of wood or metal supports that extend from the cabinets, sometimes called corbels, can hit your knees and are not visually appealing. What is the ideal overhang width for my island or bar top? As mentioned above, extra support will be needed to be sure the granite does not break or crack under stress. If this sort of installation is not possible in your kitchen (or you have an older dishwasher), the dishwasher will have to be attached to the under surface of the kitchen countertop to prevent tipping the machine forward when the door is opened. If you want to “do it yourself”, there are a variety of brackets that you can purchase either online or at your local home store. While replacing the existing laminate countertops, many of our clients choose to keep their current tile backsplash. The replacement causes a visible gap of about ¼” between the new granite countertop and the existing tile. Or if you want, you can choose to have 4 ½” height granite back splash which will cover the transition between the bare wall and the existing tile backsplash, slightly overlapping the tile for a more finished appearance if the 4″ height doesn’t quite work of if the lower edge of the tile is rough or unsightly. This will be determined by the template specialist (the guy who comes to measure) and he will be able to explain to you what will be necessary and whether or not you wish to do the work yourself. The stone countertops are places on the cabinets and, after ensuring that everything is leveled, a bead of silicon is applied at the intersection of the cabinets and the underside of the stone. We’ve tried to glean the most important issues for you, our reader, who may be on the hunt for a new countertop and are considering granite. Due the abundant supply of granite from around the world and technological advances in both harvesting and preparing, granite has become more affordable than ever. In fact, some non-granite countertops can cost as much or more than granite! The kits use a plastic resin that hardens so smooth the surface, and the clear product makes the repair invisible on many types of granite, especially granite with distinct speckles, which help cover up the repair. Repairs will never be as sturdy as the original granite, however. These occur during the polishing process, when some weaker components of the granite can flake off. These small pits do not affect the strength or durability of the granite, but you should discuss these issues with your fabricator when making your choice of granite. If the pits really bother you, you should consider purchasing a granite that has minimal or no visual imperfections. Due to the limitations in granite slab size and/or the layout of your kitchen, many granite kitchen countertops have seams. However, there is some debate as to whether this location is more sensitive to movement since the changing weight of water, dishes, etc. A good number of granite colors that are very beautiful with a variety of colors and veins that flow in different directions, are not truly “granites” in strict geological terms. If any problem does happen, it will happen during fabrication or transportation. A lot of customers do not mind the fill lines and visual imperfections because of the beauty of these natural stones. What about allowing my granite to overhang the edge of my island for more seating options? This gives a good visual appearance because it creates a ¾” overhang from the door fronts. The actual overhang may slightly vary depending on how straight the countertops are installed. These overhangs have to be supported by steel braces placed under the countertop and then screwed into the wooden studs in the knee wall. Extended islands, higher level bar tops, and peninsulas are some of the areas of the kitchen that may have an extended overhang, up to 12″. The ideal solution is to place steel bars, secured adequately, and is a permanent support that is almost invisible and does not hit your knees! For most people, a 12″ overhang is more than adequate for seating without your knees hitting the cabinet. How do you attach a dishwasher to a granite countertop? Because of the growing popularity of natural stones (such as granite) for kitchen countertops, many manufacturers offer special bracket kits that allow you to secure your dishwasher to the sides of your cabinets rather than at the top. This attachment also prevents vibration during the dishwasher’s operation. This attachment is rigid enough to secure the dishwasher safely, while still allowing you to easily remove it in case you need to repair or replace the dishwasher in the future, without having to call a granite fabricator to do so. Though you can drill the granite and install an anchor, by far the simplest installation kits use epoxy-type adhesive to secure the bracket to the underside of the countertop and require no drilling. This scenario applies in cases where the tile goes all the way down to the countertops. The new caulk line will be about a ¼” thickness instead of the tile grout line of about 1/8″. If you have kept the grout from the original tile installation, you can use that grout to fill the gap. You can purchase and install a trim line from any tile supplier that fits between the tile and the granite countertop. Installation of a 4″ back splash of granite over the existing tile which will completely cover any gap between the tile and the new granite. If your old laminate countertop has an integrated 4″ back splash,you can purchase a granite back splash that will fill the gap between the granite countertops and the existing tile. You may need some additional support in the corners of walls or it there is an excessive unsupported area or overhang. How is the granite attached to the cabinets, and do the cabinets need to be absolutely level? This is sufficient to hold the countertops in place in a normal situation. Your granite installer is aware of this and will install wood shims as necessary to make the installation as perfect as possible.

Travertine Countertops: Design Ideas Pros and Cons and Cost by

Because of this each stone of travertine is different from another. The shine of these countertops depends on the types of finish that has been selected. The surface of the tiles have a very velvety appearance, therefore will instantly add a very svelte touch to one’s house. The light colored faux wooden cabinets look chic with such countertops. The travertine stone will not only beautify your washroom but will also giver a very sophisticated look without making it look overdone. The smoothly surfaced stone complimented by a vessel sink made out of bronze has timeless class written all over it. The earthly tone paired with complimenting bathroom walls creates a one of a kind bathroom that redefines modern elegance. Travertine stone is easier to cut and contour than porcelain tiles, therefore making it very convenient to fill areas that are small or have an unusual shape. Travertine kitchen countertops and travertine bathroom countertops are very well-made and solidly-built like marble countertops. Even the most minor spill can lead to staining of the travertine stone. Many home owners do not install travertine bathroom countertops and travertine kitchen countertops if they are to be used excessively, out of fear of discoloration or destruction of the tiles. Most frequent application of the stone is for the kitchen countertops and bathroom vanities. Travertine is a naturally porous stone with cavities and pits in its structure so its tiles and slabs require alkaline based products for there cleaning or else there is the danger of etching. Well, these were some of the useful pros and cons regarding travertine countertops which can help you in decision making whenever you decide to remodel your kitchen or bathrooms. Complexity of the project is another factor that bumps up the price. The slab countertops are heavy and require professional handling so its better to hire a good resource for their installation. With a bit of effort in cleaning and maintenance, travertine countertops look amazing and are a one time investment. Due to its sophisticated luxurious look which has a striking resemblance with marble, travertine has become extremely popular. It has a unique appearance with irregular cavities and holes in its structure. For those who want a earthly yet somewhat stylish touch should go for the velvety cream toned vein-cut travertine countertop. They not only add instant flamboyance to any kitchen but also look expensive without actually making a dent in one’s packet. The light brown shade easily accommodates the intense pattern of the travertine mosaic tiles by toning the sharpness down with its warmth. If modern opulence is your renovations theme then these tiles are highly recommended as they add just the right touch of panache to your bathrooms without being flashy. It mixes two different stones together for a more tasteful appearance and timeless appeal. The extremely unique pattern of the stone’s natural vein cut automatically adds intricate detail and a touch of classiness to the entire look of the countertop. Even though travertine has a long list of benefits but there are some drawbacks of travertine countertops as well. Travertine countertops have a unique appearance with the irregular veins and pits which gives of a timeless and sophisticated look. The travertine countertops are highly recommended due to their commendable endurance strength in hot or cold environments. Travertine’s application is not limited to countertops as it can easily be used for unconventionally elegant back splashes, fireplace panels and shower areas. In case a tile is ever damaged, you can easily find one or two travertine tiles similar to the existing tiles to replace the defected ones. They do not crack or get scratched even when handled a little carelessly. You have a choice between tiny intricately made mosaic tiles and 36 inch travertine tiles to choose from. It is not recommended to set up travertine kitchen countertops if you have a regularly busy kitchen. Majority of the people who decide to install travertine tiles do it the refined and artistic appeal of the stone. If you do choose to install travertine tiles for your kitchen countertops then it is strongly advised that you use special products for the cleaning and upkeep of your travertine countertops. The countertops need to be polished and sealed periodically to retain the beauty of the countertops. This price can get higher if the color and type of travertine is rare. The total price of travertine countertop installation may vary as elements like labor fee, price of materials such as grout and sealants and their application charges, filling of holes in travertine, etc. Explore all your options and talk to natural stone professionals so that your investment is worth it.

All You Need To Know About Tile Countertops by

You can set hot pans right on the tile surface without fear of damage. Coffee, wine, and other spilled liquids can stain grout lines if the grout isn’t sealed regularly. But glass tile is fragile and most prone to chipping, one reason it is more commonly used as a backsplash than a countertop. Grout (and some types of tile) absorb moisture, which will seep down and dampen the plywood, eventually causing it to delaminate and swell, which can lead to tiles heaving and popping. Glass tile especially has a tendency to chip or scratch if not cut precisely, and a highly visible countertop is no place for poorly cut tiles. Tiles come with smooth factory edges but after you cut one, the edge will be sharp. Porcelain, for example, requires the use of porcelain adhesive, while thinset adhesive can be used for ceramic and natural stone tiles. The notches let you spread a uniform base, which will ensure that the surface of your tiles is flat and even. Also, it takes at least 24 hours for tile to set, so be sure it has dried completely before grouting the joints. Wipe down the countertop after meal preparation with a damp sponge or washcloth. Avoid using acid-based cleaners such as vinegar or commercial cleaners that contain mineral acids. Use a small brush (an old toothbrush works well) to scrub away food deposits on grout lines. Keep reading for the 411 so you can make an informed decision for your kitchen remodel. Tile countertops reached the peak of their popularity in the 1970s and 1980s, only to wane in favor of solid surface composite materials and the increased availability of natural stone slabs. Tile is heat resistant, which makes it a good choice next to a stove or oven. Glass tile also comes in a large variety of colors and styles and brings a translucent gem-like quality that’s truly stunning. Use only tile backer board as a substrate to prevent this problem. A good tile saw can make the difference between smooth, clean cuts or the chipped edges that can occur when you manually score and snap the tiles. A dry layout means positioning every piece of tile before you actually start installing with adhesive. Use plastic tile spacers to achieve uniform joints between the tiles. Arrange the cut ends of the tiles against the back of the countertop. Position whole tiles, whenever possible, at the front and center of the countertop, and reserve cut tiles for the back edge. The tile manufacturer will specify a specific size of notched trowel. Be particularly careful about even spreading of adhesive when laying translucent glass tiles—any irregularities will show right through. For glass tiles, use only grout that’s recommended by the manufacturer. Use an all-purpose kitchen cleaning spray when necessary to remove stubborn grease or grime. These can damage the surface of stone tiles and may remove the sheen from porcelain, glass, or ceramic. Seal grout lines at least once a year with an interior grout sealer that is compatible with the type of tile on your countertops. Stone tiles are porous and should be sealed once or twice a year to protect them from staining. Because grout—and some types of tile, such as stone—are porous, they can absorb liquid and remain damp, increasing the risk of mold or mildew growth.

Installing 18X18 Granite Tiles Grout Lines and Adhesive Question [Archive] by

I prefer to use toothpicks as spacer so the grout lines are thin. He says because we cut the edges on the tiles the thin grout lines won’t look good because our tile edges aren’t ” factory perfect”. With the bevel and the toothpicks, the visible grout line will be about 1/8″ wide. This way we can make straight lines meaning, the seems between the tiles are very straight horizontally and vertically. My dads concern is that when we line up the tiles so they are smooth on the outside. However, if we butt we cannot get grout in between which heard can lead to problems over time. Let me take a checkpoint with you now, does this explanation work for you? I welcome critques of all kinds and bring the questions ! Any advice on installing it on the painted sheetrock? Wipe the sanding dust off and then set the granite with the same thinset you are using on the countertop. I have two sheets of 3/4 plywood with a 1/4 cement backerboard. My dad who is helping me with this project is advising me to use 1/4 inch grout lines. Use your angle grinder and slightly relieve (bevel) the edges of the tiles to match the factor edges. If we use the toothpicks as spacers without using the angle grinder and bevelling the edges, how will it look. I wanted as little space as possible, but would like to know your professional opinion. Most folks would rather go with narrower lines, so they might think wider lines look bad. Make 2 of the grout lines with toothpicks, and leave 1/4″ gaps for the other 2 lines. I agree but the lines are smaller so you dont notice it as much. Use the toothpicks, this seems to be a compromise between the two. We are using dark granite with a drak grout which i dont think will be that noticeable anyway. Therefore unless you recreate the bevel as bbcamp has suggested you should increase the spacing somewhat where this bevel has been removed so that all the grout lines appear equal in width. In the pics the grout lines look large but are very small just the width of a tooth pic. However, if you are still concerned, remove the sheetrock and install 1/2″ thick backerboard.


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