Why both grout and mortar?


Why do you have to lay down tiles with mortar and then put grout between the tiles? Why can't you just put mortar between the tiles? Is grout more waterproof than mortar? Can you use mortar as a substitute for grout and then put a penetrating sealant on top of the mortar?
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Maybe you can but it is a 2 step process, set tiles wait a day then grout.
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GreatArtist wrote:

I might be wrong, but I don't think you can put sealant on mortar. The obvious answers are that
1. Mortar is messy 2. Grout can be colored to people's wants and needs 3. Grout is much more forgiving 4. Grout does not stick to mortar
Mortar is formulated to bond masonry units together. The main ingredient of mortar is Portland cement. Grout is not mortar and not concrete either. It is in between like a soft concrete. Grout has a certain fluidity because it must fill in narrow spaces well. Mortar does not have the same consistency or fluidity as grout. Plus, grout is made of finer materials that are similar to mortar, but the makeup of grout is different. Mortar just doesn't flow the same.
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IIRC, grout doesn't shrink
--
Free men own guns - www.geocities/CapitolHill/5357/

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GreatArtist wrote:

They both have different jobs and they are both made to do their jobs better than the other. If you want to use second best materials, go ahead, but don't be surprised if it does not work out as well as you hoped.
Why do you want to avoid grout. Do you think you will save some money? It will not be much.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
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Joseph Meehan wrote:

Well I had to remove 4 tiles a few inches above the kitchen sink to get at the pipes behind the faucet. Then I used thinset mortar to put them back. So it's only 4 tiles and I think they pretty much stay dry all the time. The reason I don't want to use grout is because it has those glass particles that can injure your lungs and eyes. The thinset mortar also has the same glass particles and it was an ordeal going through the safety precautions to avoid hurting myself.
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GreatArtist wrote:

You are confusing silica with glass. There is a danger from silica dust if you inhale enough of it. Working with enough grout for 4 tiles is not going to come close to causing any damage to you. It is somewhat like asbestos. It is dangerous to be exposed to it in large quantities or for long periods.
Silica is one of the most common minerals on earth. Wear a dust mask and don't worry about it.
--
Robert Allison
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GreatArtist wrote:

Are you taking a bag of the stuff dry and throwing it around the kitchen? Or are you doing what any normal person would do, which is mix up a pint of thinset or grout outside the house and then just use it? Used in any reasonable fashion for a simple repair, this stuff is perfectly safe.
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GreatArtist wrote:

In a paste, the risks are less. Like someone else said, wear a mask and don't worry about it. If you are concerned about your eyes, wear googles. I've done a lot of tile and don't have any silica related problems.
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wrote:

My trash man would not take a partial bag of cement one day. He explained that the lime caused an eye injury to an employee and it is now company policy (re-bagged and sent out).
I replaced a couple of tiles in my pool this year at the water line. I found a small pale of grout/mortar combination (orange store). It is made for curing under water. I did go ahead and drain water below the tile as I was not that trusting. This stuff worked well... adhered well and looks like the same as the rest of the tile grout lines.
You won't find it in color choices, though.
-- Oren
"Well, it doesn't happen all the time, but when it happens, it happens constantly."
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Oren wrote:

O:
Well, the garbage man probably got the powder in his eye & couldn't wash it out right away, being on his route. It's different to be at home, with clean water readily available for eye-rinsing.
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On 22 Nov 2006 12:35:20 -0800, autobus snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Probably.
-- Oren
"Well, it doesn't happen all the time, but when it happens, it happens constantly."
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GreatArtist wrote:

Frankly I would want to use something as close as possible to the original grout. You want to match the existing grout as close as possible and I really don't think they used mortar.
BTW I agree with the others on the safety issue.
--
Joseph Meehan

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GreatArtist wrote:

To minimize installation problems.

There are products that will allow you to attempt this. Please note the word attempt.

Depends on the grout, on the mortar you're comparing it to, and on the additives in each. In general, grout is designed to be more waterproof, so yes.

That would help.
One step applications work, sometimes, but it's not necessarily the best way to go. http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t9382&page=1&pp 
R
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GreatArtist writes:

Cementitious mortar and grout are both portland cement based, with sand aggregate for both (in the case of sanded grout).
In a primitive style, they are one and the same.
Today, mortar would typically be made from the cheapest, gray portland cement.
Grout would be made from more costly white portland cement, to yield a white color or, with tinting, various colors.
Mortar for marble or other light porous stone would be more like the white grout, to avoid bleeding a gray color into the stone.
There are various additives for accelerating/retarding the set, plasticity, polymer modification, water repellancy, etc. Some of these properties are desirable for mortar or grout or both.
But sure, in the olden days, you had one primitive cement and the same stuff was used for both bedding and grouting.
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replying to Richard J Kinch, Handygirl wrote: Thank you for that! Asked a sales person for a bag of grout had him place it in the car for me (50lb) bag and never looked at it. Started grouting when I returned home and never noticed it was mortar. I've been worried that I made a huge mistake on my backsplash. However, the backsplash is natural stone roughly cut and I think it looks pretty good. Just wondering ....do I still seal the mortar. Luckily the stone was sealed previous to grouting so....the big question....will this work???
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Handygirl wrote:

The primary difference is that grout has small or no aggregate particles and is meant for narrow joints, joints from 1/16" to maybe 3/16. Mortar has larger aggregate - the aggregate makes it strong - so it will be fine for your joints assuming the joint width is large enough to accommodate it.
And yes, seal it.
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replying to dadiOH, Handygirl wrote: Thanks Dadioh. I noticed that small holes appeared between the stone so I proceeded to fill in any little cracks or holes. Uhh what a tedious job. It really looks good though I didn't do it correctly. Next time I'll know. Thanks again
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