Counterytop doesn't meet tiles

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http://i20.tinypic.com/24wdmox.jpg
I had installed in a new countertop. The countertop and the tiles don't meet vertically. A repair person said that the tile and dry wall will have to be replaced.
The tiles on the rest of the kitchen (in an L shape) are all in place on the wall, but they do not meet the countertop either.
****
Two strips of tile (about 3/8") are missing near the corner where an appliance garage was removed, so that is a problem as well.
http://i22.tinypic.com/6hsrja.jpg
Our countertops did not turn out the way we would like them; so we are not looking for a perfect-looking kitchen. I have new appliances and new Armstrong flooring as well. But I think tearing out tile (and I'd put the same color - white back in) is too much expense. The grout in betwen is a mauve colored grout, as the countertops were mauve colored, and now they are beige. But I can live with the mauve color, even though someone did 'hint' that it looked like it is dirty (which it is not.)
Some of the tile above the stove was put back in by my husband, so he is capable of replacing the tiles that are not there.
But we can't get any advise on what product or technique to fill the space between the Cambria countertops and the tile if we do not want to replace all the tile.
Any comments appreciated.
Dee Dee
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How about a photo without all the stuff on the counter? That would help get a better idea what you are talking about. Meantime, I'd consider some soft of decorative trim or cove to cover the gap.
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http://i24.tinypic.com/jgk1ds.jpg
Here is a picture of where the tiles meet the countertop. It may not be light enough.
I'm not sure what you mean by "...some soft of decorative trim or cove..."
I do have some towels up against the space now just to make sure that no water seeps into the gap.
Thanks for your reply. Dee
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wrote in message

From the picture it appears that the countertop extends UNDER the backsplash tile, but that a small gap remains between the bottom of the tile and the top of the countertops. I'd consider shimming-up the countertop until it is flush with the bottom of the tile. The current gap also gives you an excellent opportunity to get some clear silicone caulk between the two surfaces before you close the gap.
Just my .02 worth....
Jay
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Husband says: It is not wise to try to shim something that is this cumbersome and heavy, and you don't want to come apart. This countertop was just installed put four joints in an U shape which weighs approximately 1,000 pounds total.
Thanks. Dee
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wrote in message

Why was the countertop not built higher to fill the gap?
You could just fill the gap with appropriately cut wood trim, then caulk.
Bob
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It wasn't.

I like that suggestion, as Steve also gave. The only problem I can see with it is that (naturally) it will be at the back of the sink where water can run back into it. A spray of vinegar or clean-up cleaners that might be used to clean the counter top would not be that good for wood trim. Just washing up each day would tend to wear out the wood trim much faster (of course) than the Cambria or tile would ever wear out; then what to do.
I think it would look nice, though. Thanks for your suggestion. Dee
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Your countertop installer seems to have been incompetent. He ought to have described to you what a BACKSPLASH is and does. This is usually made of either countertop material or wall surfacing. When well-installed, a backsplash is waterproof.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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wrote:

He said that our walls were too irregular to use a backsplash. I don't like the looks of a backsplash anyway. Reminds me of a restroom. Thanks. Dee Dee
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You are fortunate that the tile is pretty plan. You should be able to find a complementary trim tile that you could use to fill the gap. But I agree, the contactor that installed the counter should have stopped and consulted you about the gap before finishing the installation. Installing a shim piece on the cabinet would have been a much better solution.
wrote:

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Maybe, but since the front is visible, that 3/8" shim will look like crap.
Often, there is no simple answer. Make the top thicker? That would look out of scale. Replace the wall tile? That would look the best, but is expensive and time consuming.
Too many times I've started with a simple spruce up or paint one room and end up doing major work as there is never a clean line to stop and not affect the rest of the room or the next room.
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Right you are, Ed. We've decided that to replace the wall and the tile is just too much problem and expense because the rest of the job is not done perfectly. But we don't want to have a totally botched up kitchen, and want to keep things to a minimum.
Thanks for your reply. Dee
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If you go to a real tile store, they will have small tile trim pieces that can be put in place to cover the gap. Just as you have baseboards and quarter round moldings on the floor, this would fill and/or cover the void.
See the suggestions that Steve posted earlier. He has good suggestions and options.
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You wanted any comments, so here they are.
It appears you thought new counter tops would remodel the entire area. Now, after over spending for a floor & new appliances, you are having buyer's remorse.
I see no problem with the counter tops, of course you really don't show the surface area of them. You don't like how the rest of the area meet the counter. You forget, the tile no doubt was set after the old counter top was in place. Why would you think the new tops would match the old tile? Did someone give you a hint they would?
Complete the remodel in the correct fashion. You paid for a half-way remodel, and you got it. New appliances and floor won't fix the problem at hand. What in the world were you thinking?
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alt.home.repair:

Some options, in decreasing order of my preference:
1. The counter installers should have shimmed the new counter to the same height as the old counter. Ask them to come back and do it right. Whether they agree will depend on how nicely you ask and what is in your contract. They'll have to completely remove and reinstall the countertops, so you're asking for a lot. You'll be lucky if they agree.
2. Take a sample of the tile to a real tile store, not a big box place. They'll help you match some trim pieces that look like the trim you put around wooden cabinets. They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. I would pick something like quarter-round or cove molding (Google for these terms if you don't know what they mean). Put some silicone caulk in the gap, then apply the trim pieces as recommend by the tile pro -- or have them do it.
3. Do #2, but use wood trim instead. It'll still look nice and be cheaper, but won't be as waterproof. You can match the color of your cabinets.
4. Get a real paint store, not a big box place, to custom-tint some caulk for you to match your existing grout. Use it to fill the void. No one will notice that the bottom grout line is a little bigger unless you point it out. If you're lucky, one of the standard colors will match.
5. Do #4, but use custom-tinted grout. This is tougher to do that #4 because grout changes colors as it cures, while caulk usually stays the same.
--
Steve B.
New Life Home Improvement
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Thanks for all your suggestions.
1. This was discussed with installers previously; we will not be in contact with our installers anymore; this is only a small part of the reason.
2. Yes, we have looked at the quarter-round tile pieces and brought home a few samples. I will take a sample of the Cambria and the matching trim-piece tile and ask if the silicone caulking will adhere to the tile and trim-tile and Cambria. But I assume you think it will work as you suggested it.
3. I hadn't thought of wood trim. We had as a counter-top previously (formica) that had wood-trim all around it. I don't know what wood it was, but even though the stain became worn-looking over the years, the wood was certainly strong and still intact. It is a consideration; thanks.
4. We have been to a paint store and matched our grout to a successful color and he has already bought the tile and grout to match; but Husband thinks the hole is too large to fill with grout. hmmm ---
Thanks for your thoughtful answers. Dee
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wrote on 20 Oct 2007 in group

Caulk would be better than grout. You need some flexibility where surfaces meet. Tile stores can sell you caulk that matches the grout they sell.
Bob
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Steve, I may be replying twice, my posting didn't 'seem' to go through.
Thanks for all your suggestions.
1. This was discussed with installers previously; we will not be in contact with our installers anymore; this is only a small part of the reason.
2. Yes, we have looked at the quarter-round tile pieces and brought home a few samples. I will take a sample of the Cambria and the matching trim-piece tile and ask if the silicone caulking will adhere to the tile and trim-tile and Cambria. But I assume you think it will work as you suggested it.
3. I hadn't thought of wood trim. We had as a counter-top previously (formica) that had wood-trim all around it. I don't know what wood it was, but even though the stain became worn-looking over the years, the wood was certainly strong and still intact. It is a consideration; thanks.
4. We have been to a paint store and matched our grout to a successful color and he has already bought the tile and grout to match; but Husband thinks the hole is too large to fill with grout. hmmm ---
Thanks so much for your thoughtful answers. Dee
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You would never fill a gap between a horizontal and vertical surface with grout anyway. By the scale of your photos, it almost looks small enough to caulk. Maybe with a caulk backer rod and a close color match for the caulk (tile store), you might be able to make it work. If you are a good caulker, a pro should do it so it will look acceptable.
A paint store matched grout???
JK
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Why is that?
By the scale of your photos, it almost looks small

What is a caulk backer rod?
and a close color

Yes, we have matched the grout that we have in place now. We have used the grout replace some of the other tiles.
No, we have not matched a caulk to the color of our grout.
Thanks. Dee
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