How to Grout Backsplash Properly

Written by Milan Jara on 7th Oct 2022

Grout Backsplash

Grouting backsplash really finishes the job. Yet not all of us know how to grout backsplash like a pro. Here are some tips for achieving the best results.

When it comes to tiling, there are three parts to completing the project. First, you must prep your drywall. Next comes the tiling, and lastly is applying the grout. Once you install everything, you will need to learn how to grout both a backlit backsplash and a regular backsplash.

Grouting can make or break a project. It is done after the tile backsplash is installed, and a lousy grouting job can completely ruin even the best tile job. Clean, professional-looking jobs provide a finishing touch, completely transforming the feel and appearance of your space.

How to Grout Backsplash

This process for grouting backsplash makes it look like a professional job. Taking your time to do a proper job is worth the effort and can be done simply using the following method.

1. Choose Your Grout

The grout type you use depends on the gap size used between tiles. If you want an easier installation, use high-quality grout that doesn’t need a sealant. Look for one with polymers in its mix. To do this, select one using the following grout types:

  • Quarry Type: Quarry type is a cement-based grout perfect for terracotta, slate, or quarry tiles. They are also ideal for wider grout joints between tiles that are ⅜ to ½ inches wide.
  • Epoxy: Created using a hardener and epoxy resin, it is stain-resistant and less porous. It is perfect for kitchens frequently exposed to grease or acids. It dries quickly, thus making it difficult to work with. Most people tend to avoid it.
  • Finely Sanded: This is perfect for tiles using medium-sized joints (⅛-⅜” in width). This type contains sand which reduces shrinkage and has better durability.
  • Unsanded: This provides a smoother texture as it contains fine sand powder. It makes an excellent choice if you don’t want a gritty appearance. Only use it if you have narrow seams. If you use it with wider seams, you may experience cracking since it doesn’t contain the same binding power as sanded grout

2. Select the Grout Color

Grout Colors

The right color will provide a cohesive, attractive result. To make the best choice, consider the following:

  • Using grout that is darker than your tile is more forgiving in terms of kitchen stains. It will provide an appealing contrast when combined with lighter tiles.
  • White grout is more likely to show grime and grease when compared to grout that is dark gray. Yet, grout can still provide a great look to the backsplash, providing you are willing to keep it clean.
  • Grout in a soft gray will highlight specific tile patterns. It will hide more stains than white grout.
  • Colorful grout creates an eye-catching aesthetic. It can provide a fun appearance to a kitchen backsplash, especially if it enhances the color of your tiles. Then, it ties everything together.

3. Grout Your Backsplash

Once the color and type are selected, you can proceed to the application. The first step is gathering the materials. You will need:

  • Plastic sheet
  • Grout
  • Painter’s tape
  • Grout sealer
  • Caulk
  • Putty knife
  • Grout float
  • Two buckets
  • Cloth
  • Sponge

The next steps are the following:

Grouting

  1. Protect countertops using plastic sheeting. Secure all corners using painter’s tape.
  2. Examine the joints. Ensure there are no clumps of mastic or mortar that have emerged from beneath the tiles. If there are, it will prevent the grout from properly settling.
  3. Use the putty knife to mix grout in a bucket and follow the directions on the packaging. Allow the grout to sit for five to 10 minutes to soak up water. Mix more in the bucket until the grout is a peanut butter consistency. Only mix enough of the grout to allow you to work in a small area. Doing this will prevent your grout from hardening before you’re able to use it, eliminating waste.
  4. Begin working in small areas when you apply the grout. Spread the grout over your tiles to fill all joints using a grout float. Using a 45° angle, spread the grout in an upward motion. You can alternatively spread it diagonally
  5. Wait 15 minutes or more for the grout to dry, depending on the directions on the packaging.
  6. Fill a second bucket using warm water. Use a damp sponge to wipe excess grout from your tiles. Make sure the sponge is damp but not wet. A wet sponge completely removes the grout, and you will have to redo the job later.
    Your first swipe may not look like it accomplished much; however, persistence will pay off. Keep wiping across the tiles, working in a diagonal line. Rinse the sponge after each side has wiped the tile. Eventually, the tiles will look clean.
  7. Allow the grout to dry thoroughly. This will take a few hours. Once it is dry, take a cloth and remove any remaining grout film from the backsplash tile.
  8. After waiting a full 24 hours, seal the grout with a sealer product and clean cloth if needed. Allow the sealant to fully cure before using this area.
  9. You should also caulk the backsplash along any windows or corners and along the countertop.
  10. Once the caulk has completely dried, the project is finished.

These are tips on how to grout backsplash properly. If you find you have dried on grout, simply scrub off what you can using a grout scrubber. You can use vinegar to soak it but be aware that it may stain some tiles.

Following these methods will give you a professional-looking grout job to your backsplash. By selecting the proper type and color, the job will look exceptional, and you will be able to enjoy it for years to come.

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