Remodeling your home is one of the best parts of being a homeowner! The freedom to customize and change your bathroom as you desire is an opportunity to experiment and get your ideal aesthetic. But what do you do when it comes to grouting?
Grouting can seem complex, but it’s a simple and easy task most DIYers can handle. If you’ve been looking for a quick guide on what to grout and what the process could involve for you, we’re here to help!
So, keep reading to get the answer to the question, “should I grout shower floor before tiling walls?” to get well on the way to ensuring your bathroom can match your vision perfectly.
If you’re getting fed up with remodeling, you might want to skip a few steps during the process.
However, grouting is one step you won’t want to skip. Here are some of the benefits of grouting your bathroom and tile.
One of the most notable benefits of grouting is superficial, but who’s complaining? Grouting will make your tile and flooring look much better!
Unsurprisingly, grouting has become something of an expectation when it comes to remodeling and designing. Without grouting, the bathroom space tends to look unfinished.
Your bathroom will have a more polished appearance, so much so it could’ve stepped out of a show on HGTV! So, if you’re looking for a bathroom that looks fresh and professional, grouting is essential!
On top of looking better, grouted tile and flooring is much easier to clean. That can make a world of difference to the appearance of your bathroom.
Without grouting, the gap between tiles is much wider and deeper. Unfortunately, that means dirt, grime, dust, and other detritus all too often get caught between tiles.
Your tiles quickly get a dingy, dirty appearance. Even cleaning could become a chore (more than it already might be!).
Additionally, these areas can trap moisture. The trapped moisture can lead to mildew and mold, among others.
You don’t have to live with those unsightly and potentially harmful hazards!
Grouting your tile makes the area flatter and easier to clean.
So, you might only need mops and brooms to take care of everything! Gone are the days of persistent trapped dirt, moisture, and mold.
You’ll also benefit from a much safer walking space. Those small gaps between tiles can easily become a tripping hazard.
Tiling can be sharp around the edge. These edges can slice into a foot or, at least, leave a nasty impression on you if you fall.
Grouting can help to cover these areas, giving you a flatter surface. And, the flatter your surface gets to be, the fewer edges and potential tripping hazards you’ll have to deal with.
So, you’ll no longer have to fret about the risk of slipping if you need to make a midnight trip to the restroom barefoot.
When to Grout
Grouting is all well and good, but what should you grout first? Should you grout the shower floor before you begin tiling the walls?
Sure, it can be tempting to try to knock out individual tasks, but it’s more complicated than it sounds. Here are your options when it comes to tiling.
Floor Before Wall
What are the benefits of tiling the floor before the wall? For one, you’ll have the floor completely done once the grouting sets!
You’ll also have steadier footing when it comes time to tile. Additionally, if there’s any water, your shower floor will be better protected than without the grout.
However, that isn’t to say there are no cons.
You’ll need to stop working on the shower until the grouting has dried and sealed. If you step on the floor while the grout is still setting, you’ll disturb the tile.
That is liable to cause the tile to dry unevenly, the grout to crack or spread, and much more.
Your symmetry and hard work will be ruined and you might have to start the entire process over again to fix it all! Make sure that your grout is completely dry and set before stepping on the floor!
You also run the risk of dropping tile debris onto the floor. What could be worse than cracking or chipping newly-set floor tiles?
So, work carefully to avoid the expensive headache of replacing flooring.
Wall Before Floor
With so many cons to grouting the shower floor first, you might be tempted to do the wall before the shower floor. But that isn’t perfect, either!
Leaving the floor ungrouted while you grout the wall could leave gaps where you stand—and that’s liable to be painful while you’re working!
You also could chip or damage the edges of the tile, depending on how you set them.
The tile may also not be as rigid or set in place as it would be with grouting. That runs the risk of ruining your tile.
So, between the two, it’s often best to grout the wall first to avoid a whole gamut of issues with your floor.
All At Once
One solution to figuring out which to do first is to do both at the same time.
Grouting your floor will force you to wait before you can grout the wall. Grouting your wall can leave your floor uneven, unprotected, and even uncomfortable.
The best option is to begin by grouting your wall and then your floor tiles. By doing both at once, they’ll finish drying around the same time. That way, you’ll keep your bathroom tidy and clean, letting you move on to projects beyond your bath and shower.
Frequently Asked Questions
With everything we’ve discussed, you might still have a few thoughts about grouting. Well, we have all the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding tile grouting.
Why shouldn’t I grout the floor first?
Grouting the floor first will force you to wait for the grout to set or risk ruining your work standing on the tile. It needs at least 24 hours to set and could take up to three full days to be done!
That’s a great deal of lost time for you to be unable to work on your project. If you grout the wall first, you simply need to avoid smudging or knocking against the wall. It’s a much easier task to manage and is significantly less disruptive to your projects.
Will I need to redo grouting?
Yes! Grouting is not a permanent process. Inevitably, the grouting will need replacing.
Depending on how well you maintain your tile, grout can last up to 16 years. Typically, it takes about 10 years for grout to need replacing. Since it lasts so long, making sure it’s done properly is crucial!
Will grouting tile damage it?
No, grouting tile properly will not damage the tile. Grouting is a protective substance for tile, making it effective at preventing damage.
Grouting your shower floor before you tile your walls is tempting but should be avoided. It’s best to tile both your floor and wall and then grout at the same time. Doing so will ensure that the grouting finishes drying around the same time, so you can complete both tasks.
Additionally, this approach will ensure you won’t worry about ruining your grouting.
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