new ceramic floor grout is sandy

Got new ceramic floor in the kitchen (wear rating 4), it is glazed. However, the grouting used is very sandy, and porous. It comes off easily where an excess of it was applied, for eg near the base trim. I'm afraid if I mop too hard, it will come right off. Will a grout sealer help make it solid? The contractor ran away w/o applying a grout sealer, and told me that's extra, not in the estimate.
On another note, the floor is very cold (my house is on a slab). Would porcelain have felt less cold, being that it is denser, and thus forms a better barrier between the slab and tile surface? Had I known how cold it is, I would have stuck to linoleum...
Thanks! Vijay
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Grout should cure hard unless he used an old batch. Moping should have no effect on it. Tile and ceramic transfer heat rapidly. Wear shoes.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Wet it, mop it, if in a week its still soft you will probably end going to see Judge Judy, since the installer screwed up and has to redo it all. Isnt remodeling fun.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

old bags. Installers are supposed to check the bags. Could be old grout causing your problem. Also could be that no latex additive was used with plain grout. Adding latex has been the norm for as long as I can remember. Check the bag.
All floor materials are the same temperature as the room they are in, usually around 70 degrees. Thing is, the surface of your skin is about 85 degrees. Tile (ceramic, porcelain, stone, it doesn't matter much) transfers heat very quickly and easily. Wood, being a slight insulator, transfers heat more slowly. It is that transfer of the heat from your bare skin into the material on the floor that makes your feet feel "cold". In either case, if you stand in one place long enough and then walk away the floor will have a "warm spot" where you stood. That is the nature of tile flooring. Time to buy some fuzzy slippers.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Should be no temperature difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles. As far as it being cold, a little research on your part would have revealed this. This is why it's important to research decisions you have to live with for years. At least you'll be happy in hotter weather.
Often the sand on the surface of the newly dried grout will release some with the first sweeping. There should only be a tiny bit of sand with this first sweeping, and once the bit of loose surface sand releases, that should be it.
Scratch the grout with your fingernail. It should not budge at all. Then scratch it with something plastic like a plastic fork or spoon. It still should not come apart. In 3 days it should be hard and in 7 days should be very hard.
If it is coming apart at all with your fingernail, you're screwed.
If it is a crappy job but you have to scratch at it pretty hard with a plastic utensil to make it come apart, you have a bad job but could salvage it some by applying a quality grout sealer. The sealer normally just waterproofs it, but in your case the sealer soaking in could make the surface hard enough for you to live with the bad job. If you have dogs, their toenails will destroy it.
P.S. grout sealing is optional. Most people are willing to do it themselves rather than pay to have it done. If you wanted it sealed you should have told the installer in advance. Quality modern grouts with polymer are very stain resistant as-is, so I don't like to apply sealer unless I'm requested to.
Let us know what you find.
thetiler
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Speaking about sealers....
I used a spray can sealer from Home Depot in my bathroom. No cleanup, just stinks real bad until it dries. Ventilation is NOT an option, but a necessity.
In any case, I put two coats on the grout lines and its survived a few mishaps already (white grout too)
Very little cleanup needed, just wipe up the excess.
Tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks, I will definitely try the grout sealer, will post. On the subject of cold, I was told by one and all, DONT install the electric mesh underneath, it's way too expensive, and that the tiles will just take on the house temperature. Well, not quite true, I think an electric mesh would have been a good idea. But, is it too late even now to do something about it? Maybe not. How about gouging out the grout, that will leave a gap of about 1/4" between tiles. Lay out wiring in the inter-tile space, then put grout back, maybe mixed with cement to withstand the heat (it's low volatge anyway). But then the question is, will a sparse wire mesh (tiles are 12" x 12") heat up the surface? Maybe so, if we kick up the power a little... Any thoughts on this?
Thanks and regards! Vijay
P.S A carpet under the kitchen dinette and a couple of other mats thrown around definitely help for now
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.