Grout is the mortar type material used to fill the spaces between the individual tiles, or stone. It's purpose is simply to fill the joint between the tiles and become a permanent, integral part of the floor.
Neither sealing the grout nor using a 100% Epoxy Grout will guarantee against surface build up or discoloration of the grout.
Grout needs to be cleaned on a periodic basis to remove any surface build up.
This routine cleaning can be done with a daily concentrated household or commercial cleaner depending on the application.
When heavy-duty grout cleaning is required you can use a professional strength stone or tile grout cleaner that is capable of removing grease, soap scum, body oil, mildew stains, algae, and synthetic or acrylic waxes from the grout joints.
Post grouting installation clean up
Grout haze is a film left behind on the surface of the tile as part of the final grouting process; usually buffed off the surface using a dry terry cloth after the grout has achieved its initial 24-hour cure.
The removal of a heavy haze after several days can be difficult; the most successful method of cleaning is to use a cleanser with Sulfamic Acid, which is a mild acid that attacks and breaks down cement smears.
For severe grout haze conditions, there are several products on the market called "Grout Haze Removers", which usually contain Sulfamic Acid.
You may also use an "Epoxy Haze Remover"; formulated to quickly and safely remove Epoxy grout haze without damaging the grout or the tile of your newly installed stone or ceramic floor.
Always follow manufacturer directions when using grout haze removal products.
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You should allow your new stone or ceramic tile and grout to dry for at least 72 hours after installation, before any type of maintenance occurs.
Cleaning your new floor with a damp mop once a week is the best thing you can do to maintain your ceramic floor.
A simple sweeping or vacuuming of your tile floor prior to mopping will remove any dust or debris.
Make sure that the cleanser you have chosen is compatible with grout cleaning, and will not stain the grout.
Heavy traffic areas should be mopped more often than once a week.
You may use an all purpose, non oil-based household or commercial cleaner, remember ensure that this cleaner is suitable for grout area cleaning.
You can also use a cleaning solution of 1 cup of white vinegar to 2 gallons of tap water.
Never use a detergent or soap because it may dull the surface and can promote the growth of mildew.
When cleaning, the entire area should be cleaned or scrubbed with the cleansing solution, through the use of a white cotton mop, used only for ceramic cleaning.
The entire flooring area should then be rinsed with clean water to remove any cleaning solution residue.
Cleaning unglazed tiles should be done on a regular basis using cleansers that have a neutral pH for safe regular use; these cleaners are better suited at removing grease, oils, and normal spills from unglazed products.
Remember: Routine cleaners should never contain acids, chlorines or ammonia as these chemicals can damage and discolor the grout or the surface of the stone or tile.
Protecting your ceramic floor
Protect you ceramic tile by affixing felt or similar pads to the legs of any metal, iron, wood, or plastic furniture that could scratch and dull the surface.
Exterior metal furniture which rests on tile floors or patios may rust and cause staining.
Good quality entry mats will help protect your ceramic tile from wear by collecting dirt, sand, grit and other substances such as oil, asphalt, or driveway sealer that might otherwise be tracked onto your floor.
You can also place mats at heavy pivot locations such as in front of the kitchen sink or stove.
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