Noticed a discolored grout between your tiles and now questions have aroused in your mind? You may be wondering if the grout sealers in between have worn out. Maybe the sealer has expired.
Does grout sealer expire?
Grout sealer does expire. It needs to be changed from time to time. The expiration depends on the condition and surroundings of your tile. Sometimes it also depends on the type of grout sealer used. Even though some brands mention the expiration date, it alters depending on the application.
In this article, you’ll find out all the relevant information you need about sealers. You’ll also find the do’s and don’ts to tackle the situation.
Continue reading to know everything about the issue!
Does Grout Sealer Expire?
Grout sealer is a fluid assortment. It’s used to fill gaps between tiles. Obviously like any other hardware assortment, it will expire.
Expiration usually means the grout sealer has dried out. When the sealer expires, the grout will be exposed.
Exposed grout can create a fracture in your tile. This is why grout sealing is quite important. For extra safety, you can also caulk over the sealed grout.
How To Tell If Grout Sealer Has Expired?
There are two important things to keep in mind. The kind of sealer you applied and the appearance of the grout.
The expiring time and other features depend on the type of grout sealer you used. That’s why it’s important to keep track of the grout sealers you applied.
If the expiration date mentioned in the label exceeds, your grout is expired.
The grout condition can also identify an expired grout sealer. If the gap between tiles seems very damp, the sealer has expired. This is a favorable case for bathroom and kitchen areas.
You may also notice dried grout sealers between tile and baseboard. Dirt and debris between the tiles, in this case, mean the sealer has expired.
Shelf Life of Different Types of Grout Sealers
Shelf life depends on the condition of the surface as described earlier. A generic assumption can be 3-5 years on interior surfaces and 1-3 years on exterior surfaces.
The type of sealer can also alter this timeline.
Most often the expiration date is not mentioned on sealers but. Even if it’s mentioned, it can still be used 1 year past the expiration date. But you should store it and save it in a cool and dry place.
Shelf life after the expiration date could be 1-2 years. As long as it is stored properly.
When it comes to the already applied grout, the scenario is different, depending on its type.
For membrane foaming, the assumed shelf life can be up to 6 months. They are great for floors and backsplashes. But not for bathrooms as it doesn’t allow evaporation of clotted water inside.
On the other hand, penetrating grout sealers can last up to 1 year. They are the best choice for damp areas. For instance, bathrooms, showers, kitchen areas, etc.
What to Do If Grout Sealer Expires?
You need to change the grout sealer once it expires. It can cause damage to your tile.
Reapplying grout sealer can be a tricky process, but we’ve curated a 2-step process for you.
Step 1: Removing The Dried Grout
First, you’ll have to clean the worn-out grout. Take a sponge, the ones used for preparing the wall before painting. Soak it in water and gently scrub all over your tile.
If some parts are too deep where the scrubber won’t reach, use a toothbrush. Continue this process until all the dried-out grout is removed.
In case you can’t find the right scrubber, here are our top favorites:
Step 2: Reapplying Grout Sealer
Now it’s time to apply some grout to your tile. Pour some grout sealer into a bowl. Now, take a big brush, soak it in sealer, and gently apply it to the grout lines.
At the same time, with a rag rub the tile with your other hand. This will remove the extra grout sealer that spilled on the tile. Otherwise, the tile may become slippery.
That’s it! Do it with patience and your tile is new again.
Tips for Making Grout Sealer Last Longer
Choose the grout sealer based on two things. The type and location of your tile. Use dry cleaning materials for cleaning the surface where you have a membrane foaming sealer. Don’t expose your tile with membrane foaming to water.
For penetrating sealers, use a liquid cleaner. Don’t stretch any heavy equipment on your tile surface. This affects the grout as well.
If you keep these things in mind, you may be able to extend its shelf life after application. If nothing works for you, you could use silicone instead of grout.
With that, we’ve come to the end of our discussion. We hope this was helpful.
Question: How can I know if the grout is sealed?
Answer: While you are looking at it, if the grout changes colors, It isn’t sealed. Otherwise, it is sealed.
Question: How often should I seal the grout?
Answer: Whenever you do tile work, immediately apply grout sealer. For any existing tile, it’s recommended to have the tile cleaned and seal the grout every six months.
Question: Can I first apply the grout sealer to the whole floor, then rub it with the rag?
Answer: No, you can’t. Because after 5 minutes, the sealer hardens. If you don’t rub simultaneously, layers will be created above your tile.
That’s basically everything we could spill on your question, “does grout sealer expire?”. We hope you have found it helpful.
If you’re still facing complications with your tile, we recommend you contact a professional.
Till then, best wishes from us!