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Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Posted by repac (My Page) on
Mon, Jun 24, 13 at 22:07

Our tile backsplash is grouted all the way down to the granite. Is that typical? Would it be better to caulk at the bottom of the backsplash, right above the granite, to make a better seal? Don't know if it should be treated as tile around a bathtub, which is grouted at the juncture between the tub and tile.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Ours is caulked..


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Per Bill Vincent, guru of tile: "Any change of plane (at inside corners) gets caulked."


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Caulking is usually preferred where the two meet. The vertical wall and horizontal counter are bound to have some movement, so caulking can "give" where grout will likely crack. No need to worry, you may be fine for years, and once (if ever) it cracks you can dig out the old grout and replace with caulking...


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

caulk. grout will cause problems eventually from movement.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Caulk. If the grout is brand new, it will be fairly easy to cut it out if you don't wait.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

When changing planes or two different materials abut, always caulk.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

What would you do if the joint width is 1/16"? The Laticrete color-matched caulks I looked at say only use on 1/8" width or larger.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

I'd tape both sides of the joint and use an unsanded color-matched grout or clear grout - really squish it into the joint - smooth it, and remove the tape.

There is also a runny crack sealant for these spots. I don't remember the name of it, but my tile guys used it in a couple of spots.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Ours was grouted and it was chirping away after only 6 monrpths! We will replace with caulk thus summer.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Actually it is chipping, not chirping, no birds were harmed in the install of our backsplash I promise.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

lazygardens -- thanks, that's what my GC is planning to do.

I think it will look nicer to grout this. Seems to me if the small amount of grout that's there does noticeably crack, I could reapply or apply caulk later if it's really needed.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

If you do decide to caulk later, remember to write down the brand and color of the grout you used now so that you can get the color-matched caulk. In a year or so, you may not remember!


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

My backsplash just got completed and my tile guy did the same epoxy grout. If it is an epoxy grout, does it matter?


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Thanks for all the feedback. I'll ask KD about putting in caulk. Not sure how much I should push this with her?

What do the stone experts think of the grout/caulk issue? Oldryder, your opinion would be most welcome.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

Good tip Julie. We grouted last year, and sure enough it pulled apart and cracked. We then had to carefully remove the grout, and then caulked it. We were just being cheap, and hoping it would hold up, but it didn't.


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RE: Grout or caulk at bottom of backsplash?

GWlolo:

I asked my contractor, and he said his tile guys use epoxy-based grout whenever there are two different materials with different expansion rates. (slab and tile, tile and tub, ...) Normal grout would crack, and caulk wouldn't look as nice.


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