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Install & Replace

Badly grouted penny tiles.


I am in the middle of purchasing a house. We had the inspection yesterday, and when doing the bathroom, I noticed that the bath tub shower was a total mess. The area is covered in iridescent white penny round tiles, but when you look closer There is grout all over the place. The spacing is so overfilled in some areas, that the tiles are submerged or hardly visible, and those that are visible have grout gunked up all over Theree surface (not haze but actual clumps). Also the areas where the walls and ceiling come together are the worst. There is no visible seam as the grout is just sort of smashed in and it was never cleaned up to make a nice 90 degree transition.


At the open house and then the second viewing I had not taken note of the problem, because everything is white and I wasn't really inspecting it. 


But yesterday, I was a little taken back by just how awful it really it. It looks like a DYI gone wrong. Having done some tiles work in the past, I know that usually you can chip this off. I tired to use my keys to scrape some off one tile, and it didn't budge. Now I am worried that is is epoxy grout. 


Regardless of what it is, I need to go back to the paperwork and ask for concessions against the price due to this and  other issues that came up.


My questions are-

is this fixable, and if so, how fixable.


Is it just easier to tear out and start over?


And how can you tell the dif between regular and epoxy grout without knowing which was used?


Thank you.



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Posted 2013-02-14T11:26:40+0000  by michael9246 michael9246

Hey there Michael,


Thanks for joining our community!~


Sorry to hear that your bathroom is less inviting then you originally were hoping for. It sounds like it's quite the disaster job on the wall : (


The job isn't a total wash, but that doesn't mean it will be easy by any regard either. Grout removal can be done either manually or chemically, and either way there is a bit of elbow grease involved in this as well. 


Is there are particular reason that you are concerned that it may be epoxy style grout? I can't give you a real sure fire method on testing to see if it's epoxy or cementous, but epoxy will definitely be a bigger pain to remove than its counterpart. 


Manually, you can look at tackling this job with an angle grinder saw and a diamond cutting blade. This method will work for both cement and epoxy style grouts, but can also be pretty messy too, so be sure to wear eye and face protection for this one.


You can also bring in a heat gun to try and soften the grout residue as well, enabling it to be scraped with a razor blade. Use anything around 1200w and >500°F in temperature. But be forewarned, this method may result in glazed tile surfaces being melted, so use this as a last resort.


Alternately, you can also look into chemical methods such as Paint/Epoxy removers, but since you do not know what type of material you are working with, I cannot advise you to do such in good conscience. 


This may be a job to have a professional quote out to see if they may be able to do the fixes for you if it seems a bit daunting, so this definitely is going to take some work to get fixed up. But don't give up!~


Posted 2013-02-14T19:14:44+0000  by Jay_HD_CHI
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