A while ago I had some left over white thinset in it's original 20# bag, I
poured them into an empty plastic bucket (labeled for grout). I put it away
and forgot about it for a whole year. Yesterday I noticed in my bathroom
shower tiled wall there is a crack along one of the recessed alcove. So I
used screw driver to chip the grout out, then took out the "grout" from that
bucket, mixed it with latex grout additive and water and used it. This
morning I remember that those were not grout, those were thinset!
Now the question is, what have I done? Should I chip them out and replace
with real grout or is it "OK" what I did? It is inside the shower on the
wall about waist height and will get wet.
Thanks for any comments.
I'm no expert but if it looks good cosmetically it's probably OK.
Both grout and ordinary thinset are mortar. Both are pervious to
water unless sealed.
A possible problem is, with age mortars lose their ability to bond,
and a year may push it. Maybe an expert will jump in to answer.
Both are essentially portland cement plus sand. Thinset is hidden so it
can employ the cheapest grey portland cement. White or colored grout uses
white portland cement (more expensive than grey) so that it is either
white, or can be tinted. Since grout is non-structural just about any
cementitious base would suffice, unless you are looking for decreased water
The ancient craft used the same stuff for setting and grouting.
Thanks, I will leave it in and monitor it closely and see. One other
unrelated question...since I had the dry thinset powder sitting idle for
over a couple of years, does it "degrade" over time? Will it have less
strength now versus when I bought it some time ago?
Your choice. You have to look at it.
Thinset that's over a year old? It'll probably fall out on it's own.
Then you can get some 'fresh' GROUT and do it right.
The additive you used may help it last longer, however.
It will be fine. I use thinset as a stucco patch replacement all the time
outside and it is tough. I also use tile adhesive for grout now and then on
thin joints. Tile adhesive makes a great stucco final coat. As long as it's
not put on to thick. It shrinks and will crack if applied to thick.
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