Home Repair

Why is my grout coming out?

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The grout in my ceramic tile floor is coming out and chipping when I sweep. My House is only 10 years old. Is this common? Can I fix it with out removing all the grout or would that just not look right?
Grout between ceramic tiles can come loose and fall out, sometimes because it was not properly installed, sometimes it is an issue with the sub floor flexing too much, sometimes from old age. 10 years is petty good for grout to last. Chip out all loose grout to the full depth of the joint, with a grout removal tool (about 5 dollars), and insert new grout, compacting it very, very heavily. It is this compaction that will make it last. There is little you can do to match the new to the old, unless you take it all out and put in new. If you take it all out, choose a darker color as it will not show the dirt as much.
I have spots of grout that are coming out too. The problem is that we just put the tile in about 6 months ago. It actually cracked right after being done.
Should I just take the cracked, chipping areas out and fill in with the leftover grout or is there something else that should be done?
Guru, is Maxmm's grout cracking because it dried too fast?

(I took a tiling class at Home Depot today!)
I never had a problem with grout drying too fast. I float the grout, then squeegee off as much as possible with a rubber float, then wait untill it's firm enough to do a quick wash with sponges. Then wait some more untill a haze starts on the tile surface, then wash again with a damp sponge. Then I'm done! I know it says to wet the grout again in 24 hours but I have never gone back to do that and have had no problems with cracking grout.

What kind of grout was installed? Sanded grout or unsanded grout? Sanded is for floors and unsanded is for walls or real small grout spaces (like 1/16").

I would scrape out the loose grout and mix a small batch of the leftover. Force it in as best as possible (that's important for good adhesion), then clean up with a damp sponge. Try to save some of the leftover grout in case another area needs a repair too.
The guy who installed it said we needed to keep sponging it every 20 minutes or so for a couple of hours. Was there too much sponging involved? Did it stay too wet for too long and wasn't able to cure correctly? (Just wanted to check before I tried to fix it and did the same thing to screw it up!)
You can use a damp sponge to keep the area damp for a short while. try not to use a soaking wet sponge though. You don't want to soak the grout before it hardens.

You might get a slightly different color if you don't do it the same way you did it before.


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