Remove doubts about grout

How to seal shower grout: Expert tips to protect your shower

Prevent water damage and grout discolouration by knowing how to seal shower grout. Unsealed grout is porous and can allow moisture to seep down below the surface, possibly leading to mould or damage. Be proactive and seal your grout today.

Do I need to seal shower grout? What you don’t know

You may be wondering; do I need to seal shower grout? Sometimes this important step gets forgotten. Since grout is porous, if it is not sealed, water will get into the grout with every shower. Over time, this can lead to stains, mould, and loosening or flaking grout.

Sealing grout also makes it easier to clean, so it’s a worthwhile task. Let’s next look at what type of sealer should be used.

How to seal shower tile grout: Choosing a sealant

Grout sealer is a protective coating that covers the grout and makes it waterproof.

There are two main types of sealers: penetrating sealer and membrane-forming sealer. Membrane-forming sealer stays on the surface, while penetrating sealer soaks into the grout to a degree, offering better protection. Penetrating sealer is preferred for showers and other wet areas of your home.

Knowing how to seal shower grout starts with the right application method. You may apply a sealer with a brush, sponge, roller, or spray. Spray-on varieties are often used if large areas need to be covered, but it requires more preparation to prevent sealer overspray. Smaller jobs are generally done manually with a handheld applicator like a brush.

Test for a good seal by placing a few drops of water on the dry, sealed grout. If the water soaks in, the grout will benefit from another coat of sealer. If the water “beads” and stays on the surface, the seal is sufficient.

Best way to seal shower grout: Steps to a successful job

The first step to any shower grout sealer application is to clean and prepare the grout. Thoroughly clean away dirt and residue from the grout and allow it to dry before sealing. Here are some tips to aid you along:

  • Soapy water and a small, stiff-bristled brush will do a great job. (An old toothbrush works quite well.)
  • Remove stains by cleaning with a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water.
  • If you find any loose or missing grout, mix a small amount of new grout and make the repairs. Allow the new grout to fully cure before proceeding.

When the surface is ready, you can begin applying sealer.

  1. Read and follow all manufacturer’s directions for sealer application since different formulas can vary.
  2. Apply sealer to each grout joint, working from one side to the other. Make sure to apply a generous, even coat to each joint.
  3. Wipe away overspray with a clean cloth as you work. Generally, you will have a few minutes to clean the area before the sealant dries.
  4. Allow the sealer to dry for at least an hour before applying additional coats. Most sealers require multiple coats but check the product label before starting to make sure you have enough.
  5. Repeat steps 2 to 4 for additional coats.
  6. Allow the sealer to fully cure before using the shower or other freshly sealed areas. This typically takes 24 hours, curing times can vary based on the product used.