Tile is a great flooring choice. It’s easier to clean than carpet, and more durable that hardwood. It also comes in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, meaning you can customize your home however you want. All of the reasons are why more and more homeowners are choosing tile flooring. However, many of these homeowners don’t know how to properly care for tile which can cause problems down the line. Sealing your tile and grout is the most important thing you can do for your flooring, and here’s why and how.
Why You Need to Seal Tile
In most cases, you need to seal both your tile and your grout, though some types of tile do not need to be sealed (check with your manufacturer if you are unsure). Tile helps to strengthen your tile’s resistant to spills, water, and stains. You check whether or not your tile is properly sealed by spreading a few drops of water on your tile. If the spots darken or change color, it’s probably not sealed correctly. If the water just sits on the surface without effecting the tile, then your tile is sealed properly. It’s important to remember that tile sealants need to be refreshed every few years to remain effective.
The half of the equation is grout sealant which is arguably the more important of the two. It’s important to understand what a grout sealant is. Grout is made of sand and fills up holes effectively and cheaply. It does the job, but must be sealed correctly to last. Since grout is porous and a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, fungus and dirt, applying protection to it is mandatory—and a grout sealant accomplishes exactly that. Even a good cleaning schedule isn’t usually enough to prevent mold and bacteria from building up in unsealed tile. The best thing to do is to seal your grout to keep it sanitary and from eroding away.
Give ‘Hotspot’ Rooms in Your Home Extra Protection
Not every room in your house is created equal. The tile in your living room probably gets a lot of traffic, but not a lot of moisture. On the other hand, your bathroom tile gets a lot of traffic and a lot of water, especially if it’s in the shower. Because the moisture in your bathroom acts as a breeding ground for mold and mildew, these types of ‘hotspot’ rooms require extra care and attention in order to remain clean and nice.
Maintain the quality and overall appearance of tile and stone in these ‘hotspots’ by caring for them more frequently than you might otherwise in other rooms. Clean these tile surfaces frequently. You will also have to apply sealant more often than in other rooms because it will wear away faster, and the risk of mold and bacteria is greater because of the moisture in the room. As a rule of thumb, reseal your grout once a year for “hotspot” rooms, and anytime it’s been deep cleaned, reseal it immediately. Do you have out-of-the-way, low traffic rooms in your home? Make sure not to neglect these areas by resealing the tile in them every 4-5 years.
Tile is An Investment
When properly cared for, tile can outlast other types of flooring. It’s important to treat your tile like the investment it is, and plan to care ti for years to come. Don’t you deserve to get as much out of it as you can—for as long as you can? In order to properly maintain your tile, regularly scheduled DIY maintenance isn’t always enough. Sometimes, tile and/or stone deserve a professional, deep clean to improve its lifespan and allow you the peace of mind of a clean, safe house for you and your family.
Contact Chem-Dry Windy City and leave the back-breaking work of making your tile look pristine to us. Using specialized cleaning solutions and powerful suction equipment, Chem-Dry Windy City can blast the dirt and bacteria from your tile, grout and stone, restore your tile to a brand new look and feel, and seal it to protect from future stains and bacteria. Give us a call at 773-237-9839 today to learn more or schedule an appointment today.