Pic of our shower tile in progress and a question re grout

treasurethedayDecember 27, 2011

We're making slow but fairly steady progress now in our masterbath reno. The floor is tiled and grouted and the shower is about half-tiled. We're using a non-rectified porcelain tile with travertine deco accents and going with a 1/8" grout line. The shower floor, ceiling, niche interiors and horizontal accent row have 4" squares which are actually tumbled. Because I am sorting through those tiles to choose the most uniform, we are still able to use a 1/8" grout line despite their irregularity.

Other than choosing the color, we neglected to discuss grout options with our tilesetter prior to the floor being grouted. He used a non-epoxy Polyblend sanded grout on our floor.

The freshly grouted floor:

We have Ditra on the floor and a Kerdi shower. Our #1 goal is to avoid water penetration but ease of cleaning and avoiding any mold/mildew issues is a very close second. Am I correct that epoxy grout would be the way to go?

Would it be a good idea to switch to an epoxy grout for the shower? Unfortunately our chosen color doesn't come in epoxy but I'm told that an epoxy can be added to it... would that be ok or should we choose a grout that actually comes in epoxy?

Any advice is appreciated... Thanks!!!

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Your shower looks very nice. I am not an expert, but I can share my experience. We used Polyblend for our bathroom floor, primarily because of timing issues and because the epoxy grout was not readily available. I am planning to use epoxy grout for the shower walls and floor. The tile shop told me that the main difference is that I will have to seal the Polyblend grout every 1-3 years, depending on use. I figured I can do that and if it ever becomes a problem, we can always regrout in the future.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2011 at 2:05AM
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If you want epoxy, choose an epoxy grout. The ONLY company that you can mix their standard grouts with an epoxy matrix is Hydroment. Any other manufacturer's grout, either the guy's BS'ing you and intends on mixing in liquid latex and telling you it's epoxy, or he doesn't know what he's doing and will screw your shower up beyond repair short of ripping it down and starting from scratch.

That said, unless you have a big problem with hard water, I'm not a big proponent of using epoxy for residential showers. I think it's a big waste of money that can be solved by using a good modified grout. Especially with the newer generation of stain resistant (as well as mold and mildew resistant) grouts, such as Laticrete's Permacolor, there's really no need for going the epoxy route, or even worring about sealing (which I'm ALSO not a big proponent of).

    Bookmark   December 29, 2011 at 5:36PM
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Avanti Tile & Stone (Stonetech)

I agree with Bill. Also, epoxy is very $$$$$ and you should expect an "upcharge" from your installer as well.

The one concession I make with many of my showers is to use Quartzlock on the floor only. This is a urethane grout. Far easier than epoxy and, as this is the main wear area, just makes sense to me. Holds the colour and never needs sealing. Just my .02 worth...

    Bookmark   December 30, 2011 at 2:23PM
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