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How to Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

Grout does not last as long as tiles do, and some areas of tiled floors need to be fixed fairly often because of where they are located. Fixing broken grout is very fast and simple once you know how. In this article, I will explain how to fix broken grout between floor tiles.

As a general rule, use a utility knife to break off any of the cracked grout, then apply a tile caulk. After breaking up the existing grout, use a vacuum to suck up the broken pieces and dust. Tile caulk is specially made for this purpose, and recommended by professional tilers.

Man fixing the tiles

There are a few different options for how to fix broken grout between tiles. Using each of the 3 simple methods depends on whether the grout line is in an area that moves such as along the very edge that is connected to a wall. Other times, there can be an issue with underlying tile, so below I will cover when and how to use each of the 3 methods.

How to Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

Tile grout installed on floor tiles will last about 10 years before it needs to be replaced. However, when it does, the best thing to do is replace it rather than repair it. Replacing it is very easy to do, and here’s how it should be done.

In general, for grout along the edge of the floor remove the excess using a utility knife, vacuum it out, and apply a bead of tile caulk. For grout lines in the center of a floor, use a regular grout. Below is how to diagnose and fix issues with the underlying mortar.

Grout is a cement based product and for that reason it won’t move and flex. It’s common for walls to expand and contract in response to heat and moisture. When this happens the grout can crack.

It’s very easy to fix these areas yourself. And once the grout has been replaced with tilers caulk it can last a lot longer. Tilers caulk is more flexible and will move and flex more than regular grout.

Why You Should Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

Man fixing the tiles

When you discover broken grout, it will often appear fine for a long time provided you remove the chunks of grout that break off. However, broken grout can be replaced fairly easily. So here are the main reasons why it’s a good idea to fix broken grout between floor tiles.

Overall, it will improve the look of a tile floor, and stop moisture getting underneath the tiles which causes a tiled floor to degrade faster. Some areas of a tiled floor need to be regrouted after 6 months because of where they are positioned. But, it’s simple and fast to fix broken grout.

Professional tiles recommend not letting water pool and sit on top of tiles. If it does it will cause the grout to break down sooner. If there are cracks, any water on the surface of the tiles will seep in.

Copyright protected content owner: ReadyToDIY.com and was initially posted on October 29, 2022.

Once it gets underneath it’s very difficult to remove, and it can sit there for very long periods of time never drying. As a result, the grout and underlying mortar will break down faster, and need to be replaced sooner.

How to Prevent Grout from Breaking Between Floor Tiles

Man fixing the tiles

Broken grout reduces the visual appeal of a tiled floor. Typically grout will stay intact for a long time but can break for a few reasons. There are a few ways to stop grout from breaking between floor tiles, here’s what they are.

Overall, use a tile caulk on areas of grout that broke. Otherwise, tile grout will last for 8 to 16 years before it needs to be replaced. Perimeter grout is prone to cracking because it connects to a wall or fixtures, and should be replaced with tile caulk if it occurs.

In other cases, if something very heavy is placed onto the grout itself. Tiles, however, have an extremely large load capacity. It’s virtually impossible for something heavy to crack them.

Which can extend from the tile to the grout. But, if something like a fridge or piano is placed with only one of it’s feet carrying all of the weight, and the rest of the feet in the air, it can be heavy enough to crack the grout. Especially, because all of the weight is concentrated on a very small area.

Copyright article owner is ReadyToDiy.com for this article. This post was first published on October 29, 2022.

Grout is not very flexible and will crack if there is movement, which is common on the perimeter of a tiled floor where it meets a wall. These areas will expand and contract slightly in response to heat and moisture. Therefore, they can crack more easily.

How to Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

Brown broken tiles

Perimeter Tiles

The first case is where there is broken grout along the perimeter of the tiles. These areas connect with a wall, or fixture, and can crack in as little as 6 months. Here is the first method to fix broken grout between floor tiles that are located along the perimeter of a tiled floor.

In general, use a utility knife along the area where there is broken grout to cut away and loosen the broken grout. Then vacuum the area. After that apply a bead of tile caulk along the grout line using a caulk gun. Then push it in with a wet finger and use a damp sponge to smooth it off.

There are a few different types of tile caulk. Some have sand in them, whereas, others don’t. There are also a few different colors to match the existing grout.

If you use a tile caulk that is a different color or texture it can be noticeable, and detract from the overall look of the tiles. Therefore, you should use a tile caulk that matches your existing grout. Unless, you decide to use tile caulk to replace all of the grout on your tiled floor.

How to Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

confused man standing

Center Tiles

Caulk is recommended for perimeter tiles, but can also be used for center tiles. There is another way that center tiles can be replaced, and that is using grout. Here is another method that can be used to fix broken grout on floor tiles on areas that aren’t around the perimeter of the floor.

Overall, loosen and cut away the broken grout using a utility knife. Following that, vacuum out the loosened broken grout. Then apply a caulk that matches the existing grout color. Some grouts require a sealer, this will be stated on the product packaging. If in doubt, ask the manufacturer.

How to Fix Broken Grout Between Floor Tiles

Loose and Hollow Tiles

There can be broken grout on a tiled floor that also has loose or hollow tiles. Typically, professionally installed tiles won’t come loose or become hollow. But, when you notice this you should use a special method before repairing broken grout, here’s what to do.

As a general rule, use Fix-A-Floor to fill in hollow areas underneath the tile, then regrout the tiles using grout or tile caulk. To use Fix-A-Floor you drill into the grout line, and then apply the Fix-A-Floor to fill in the empty space underneath. Details on how it’s used is explained below.

Loose tiles, or tiles that have a hollow sound are typically caused by not enough mortar being used underneath. And is a sign of poor workmanship.

ReadyToDIY is the owner of this article. This post was published on October 29, 2022.

Overall, use a utility knife to loosen and scrape out any loose pieces of grout. After that vacuum up the loose grout. Following that, professional tilers recommend using tile caulk because it’s more flexible, and to apply it using the regular method for applying caulk.