No one likes the look of dirty, discolored grout lines in their tile. They are unsightly and remind us of what is looming in the pores. It is something that haunts many tile owners. We ignore the task of cleaning it because it just seems so daunting and time-consuming. If we wait too long even a professional tile cleaning will not bring the grout back to life. Instead of ripping up the tile and starting all over again, give painting the grout lines a try.
Your Tool Kit:
- A vacuum
- A mop
- 2-3 grout pens depending on the size of the tile space
- A scrap piece of cardboard
- A cup of tap water
- Some Clean, dry rags
Step 1: Prep the tile by carefully vacuuming any dust and debris that may be hanging around and then mop or wipe down with a wet cloth and mild floor cleaning solution. Pay special attention to cleaning the grout lines and getting as much debris as possible so the paint will adhere to the grout. Allow the tile to dry for one to two hours or until dry to the touch.
Activate a paint pen by following the instructions on the pen carefully. Most pens will have you shake the pen for a certain number of minutes with the cap on and then press the tip of the pen to a piece of scrap cardboard until the paint begins to flow from the pen.
Dilute the paint in the cup of clean tap water you have nearby. Simply dip the tip of the pen in the water like you are watercolor painting. This will allow the paint to soak into the grout with ease and give a more natural look to the pigmentation instead of a harsh stark line. Diluting the paint also enables it to last longer saving you money.
As you paint/trace over the grout lines with the pen you will want to saturate the grout surface. It is fine to get paint on the tiles as you will wipe off the excess right away. It is best to start in a back corner furthest from the door if you are working on a tiled floor. Color the grout lines for one to two minutes at a time and then set aside and grab a clean cloth.
With the clean cloth, gently wipe the area that was painted. Focus on wiping the edges of the grout lines and the top of the tile to get any excess paint before it dries on the tile. If there is a piece of grout that looks like it has too much paint you can gently wipe away some of the paint until it matches the rest of the painted grout.
When all the lines have been painted you will need to leave the tile area alone for 24 hours so the paint can fully dry. Once the paint is dry you are ready to go back to life as usual, except you will probably want to stare at your seemingly brand new tile.
This will need to be done every few years to maintain that bright clean finish. The paint should last for quiet some time and is easy to maintain with regular vacuuming and mopping.
For more tile care tips feel free to browse our blog. For the best tile cleaning and sealing in Snohomish County and the North Seattle area make an appointment with All Kleen.