I'm regrouting/caulking a shower. I do fairly well with the tub/tile caulk
for the joints. But when it comes to silicone (I am using it for where the
metal frame meets the tile) I tend to make a mess of it. It's hard to apply
well. Does anyone have any tips or secrets for using silicone? Or a website
to point me to? Thanks,
Someone posted here a month or so ago about "pushing" silicone rather
than dragging it. I tried it, and by golly they were right. Much, much
easier and smoother I find I spend less time fixing my mistakes.
Although I have yet to try this, I did read about the following
Caulk your joint free hand, then spray windex over the caulking and
any areas you don't want the caulk to stick to.
Using a stiff piece of laminate or vinyl siding, cut it into a small
rectangle and round off one corner. Use this to shape your bead and to
scrape off excess.
Grout's also more "cleanable" with a brush, which is probably what it'll
need from time to time. Silicone won't stand up to a brush, although
admittedly, I have not used every single brand of silicone sealer that's
ever been sold.
By the way, I seem to recall at least a couple of people here saying they'd
had real problems with GE silicone not curing properly no matter how long
they waited. You'd think a company would take all the bad product off the
shelves after discovering a problem, but this is GE, the company that raped
the Hudson River with toxic chemicals and pretends they didn't.
Nothing, but grout, which is not flexible, will crack and fall out
over time. I have done a fair amount of tiling, and all the
references I have consulted recommend caulk for the corners and
bottom, and grout elsewhere.
I guess I am confused by Art's post as to why caulk would prevent
water from draining into the tub or pan if applied properly.
Because caulk is water proof and will act as a dam and stop the water from
draining into the pan. Corners should be caulked but that bottom edge needs
to be grout. Fill bathtub with water to weigh it down while grouting it.
Sorry Art, I'm still not getting it. Maybe I'm stupid. You tile down
a vertical surface to about 3/16" for the top lip of the tub, a
horizontal surface with a slight pitch into the tub itself. You fill
in the gap with caulk, in a cove shape. Water runs down the the wall,
over the caulk, into the tub. How does this form a dam??
The biggest mistake people make is cutting the tip too wide and
You want to cut the tip smaller, apply less than what you think it
needs, just and then smooth it out with a wet finger. I dip mine in
rubbing alcohol and it comes out near perfect. Doesn't hurt to
practice on something first.
Make sure the tile and frame are absolutely clean and dry. Wipe tile
with full-strength bleach and dry it. Wipe both with denatured alcohol
and dry them. You want the silicone to form a cove-molding shaped
corner. Put down painters tape as far as you want tth silicone to
extend. Be sure to push the tape down in grout joints so caulk doesn't
go under the tape. Cut the caulk tip so the opening is about the same
width or a tad narrower than your caulk bead. Push the caulk tube to
apply it. Wet yer finger and run it down the bead once to even it out.
Remove the tape right away. Practice if you have never done it before.
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