By Erica Young
Sometimes no matter how much you scrub your grout lines they still look grimy and discolored. Dirty grout lines can ruin the whole look of your flooring, even if the tile is still in good shape. But before you start ripping it up and spending thousands on new flooring – try this $12 fix.
All you need is a product called grout renew colorant, and it’s basically grout paint. It recolors your grout to get it looking like new again. There are different brands and various colors available at any hardware or flooring store. Here’s how to use it.
1. Choose your color
You can try to match the original color of your grout, or you can give your flooring a whole new look with a brand-new color. Just keep in mind, lighter colors will get dirty faster and are more likely to show stains. For this project, I chose a color called “Oyster Gray.” it’s pretty light, but I liked the way it blended in with the color of my tile — giving the floor a more monochromatic look.
2. Clean the grout
Before applying the colorant, clean the grout lines as best you can. The grout paint will stick better to clean grout. Get rid of any grime and debris, but don’t worry if the grout lines don’t look perfect – that’s why you’re using the colorant! Let the grout dry before moving on to the next step.
3. Apply the grout colorant
Shake the bottle well to ensure the product is well mixed. Pour a small amount into a paint tray or paper plate. Then dip a soft-bristled toothbrush into the paint and apply to the center of the grout line. Work the paint back and forth with the toothbrush along the grout line to ensure a thin and even application.
4. Wipe away excess
A little of the colorant will inevitably get on the tile, but don’t stress. Simply take a damp cloth or paper towel and wipe away the extra paint. Work in small areas so you can continue to wipe off the excess before it dries on the tile (which will make it harder to remove). Remember to only use a small amount of paint on your toothbrush. A little goes a long way, and you want to avoid getting it onto the tile as much as possible.
Most grout colorants also include a sealer in the formula. This will help preserve all your hard work and protect the grout from stains, mold, and mildew. Allow the colorant to dry for at least 24 hours, but preferably 72 hours. As you clean your floor moving forward, avoid solvent-based cleaners on the recolored grout joints.
Always explore your options before going to extreme measures to correct old flooring. Who knew a $12 product and a toothbrush could save you thousands? Recoloring your grout is easy and will give your flooring a total makeover.
Images used with permission, courtesy of Erica Young