Seal tile joints - this is how cracks can be sealed
While tiles themselves are very easy to wash off, the joints are among the weak points. Dust, dirt, lime or even mold settle here and destroy the look. With a joint seal, the problem can easily be avoided. You can create a lotus effect with the help of a spray or a liquid impregnation, which helps against dirt and mold.
Tile joints seal homemade in a jiffy
Even the most beautiful tiles shine only in half-gloss, if the joints have become dirty or unsightly. Once micro-cracks and defects have formed, dirt particles penetrate much faster and in damp rooms there is a risk of mold formation. But do not worry, you can prevent this problem by impregnating your joints and protecting them against moisture and dirt.
You need this:
If you have decided that your tile joints require a seal, you will need to do the following:
- Sealant (liquid or aerosol)
- Anti-scale cleaner
- masking tape
- Sponge and rag
- foam brush
- rubber gloves
- plastic tub
In the beginning is the thorough cleaning
To do this, you must work with an anti-limescale cleaner, so that really no dirt particles left over. If you were to do the sealing on soiled tile joints, the dirt and possibly mold would continue to spread underground. Ideally, clean the tiles 24 hours before starting to work. You can only seal completely clean grooves, otherwise the impregnation will not adhere and the desired lotus effect will not occur.
Tip: Cleaned tiles should not come in contact with water.
Replace defective material before sealing
If, during cleaning, you find that some joints have deep cracks or non-removable dirt, you must replace them before you can seal them. If you have added new jointing material, at least 72 hours must pass before you can start the sealing.
Further steps of work preparation:
Before you begin sealing, you should remove or cover all furniture from the room. Familiarize yourself with the chosen form of impregnation before applying the product. Some products can be sprayed directly from the bottle, others require the use of the foam brush.
Sealing with liquid impregnation
If you have decided to use a liquid sealant you will need the foam brush. Before you get in contact with the product, you must wear gloves because the material is considered irritating to the skin. Put a small amount of the liquid in the plastic tub to work better with the brush. Start with wall tiles at the top and floor tiles in the back corner of the room to work towards the exit. Dip the brush in the liquid and start to impregnate the joints with strong brushstrokes. Especially in the crosshairs, make sure that enough liquid has been applied.
Try to ensure that the tiles themselves do not come into contact with the impregnation solution. If you get soiled, remove the remedy as quickly as possible with a sponge or a cotton cloth.
If you seal tile joints with liquid material, it takes about 24 hours for the impregnation to dry completely. After four hours, you can enter treated floors again. After 24 hours you should carry out a test by putting a few drops of water on the treated joints and blowing on them. If the water pours off, you have successfully impregnated the joints. If the water does seep, repeat the steps of impregnation. In a repetition, you should always impregnate all tile joints again to achieve a uniform result.
Short tips for impregnation with liquid material:
- Always work with gloves
- Clean the tile joints carefully
- Repair defects before sealing
- Sealing is done with a foam brush
- Work from top to bottom
- Remove excess material immediately
- Drying phase during impregnation is 24 hours
- Test the effect with water drops
- Caulking can be repeated
Carefully seal with a spray
If you have decided to use an impregnation spray, the work preparation must be carried out identically. You must cover the complete furniture carefully, otherwise it can come to stains. Also with sprays you should wear gloves, since the material could irritate your skin. Begin at the back of the room or on the ceiling with the caisson of the tile joints. Shake the spray bottle vigorously for at least one minute and then apply the material row by row. Spray quickly and with even pressure so that all rows are covered. The distance between the spray can and the joint should be approx. 20 - 30 cm. be.
Tip: Test the spray intensity beforehand on a piece of paper or kitchen paper.
It does not matter if the tiles come into contact with the spray, you can easily remove excess material with a rag and cold water. First, clean all tile joints before cleaning. First, remove the remaining material with a cloth and then wipe with a damp cloth. The tiles may need to be removed with a sponge and hot water to dry them.
When sealing with a spray, a contact time of at least 15 minutes is required. Then you can wipe the remaining mass with a cloth, the seal is already drawn into the joint at this time. The drying phase is no longer than one hour, then you can perform the water test. If some tile joints have not been caught while covering or there are still leaks, repeat the process on the complete, affected tile again. To re-impregnate the tiles, wait at least 24 hours, as the material already applied must first dry completely.
Short tips for covering with spray material:
- Use gloves
- Remove dirt and lime carefully
- Shake the spray carefully
- Work from top to bottom
- Recommended spray distance 20 - 30 cm.
- Remove excess material at the end
- Test after one hour feasible
- Repeat after 24 hours possible