Do It Yourself Grout Repair? (Solved)

If you’ve got a cracked grout line or some other grout problem in your shower, you might be tempted to throw up your hands and yell “I’ll just replace the whole damn thing!” After all, it’s not like the replacement is going to be any cheaper than fixing the old one. 

But what if I told you there was another option? Well, there is! In this article we’ll show you how to repair your existing tile using simple tools that are likely already in your toolbox. 

e’ll also talk about some of the things that can go wrong when repairing grout lines because sometimes even with our best efforts things don’t go as planned and how to deal with them.

How to Repair Damaged Bathroom Grout for Beginners

Sure! Here’s a single-column takeaway table based on the title “DIY Grout Repair Tips”:

Determine the Type of Grout
Clean and Prepare the Surface
Remove and Replace Damaged Grout
Apply New Grout
Seal the Grout

Replace the Grout

A DIYer can replace the grout with a new color using a few tools and materials. First, use a grout removal tool to remove all of the old grout (this will take some time). 

You might need to use more than one tool depending on how much grout is there and how much damage it has sustained over time. 

After removing all of the old grout, clean out any debris that remains with water or soap and water and let dry completely before applying new grout. 

You may then use a wet saw or tile nippers to cut your tile to size if necessary before applying fresh tile adhesive on top of it and pressing in place with spacers between sheets as you go along.

Before attempting to fix a plumbing issue, it’s essential to understand the problem and have the right tools on hand. Check out our pro guide on how to fix common plumbing issues to learn how to diagnose and fix common problems like clogged pipes and leaks.

Apply New Grout over Old Grout

Remove old grout by washing the surface with hot water and an abrasive sponge or grit-blasting it with a power tool. If you’re using a power tool, make sure that it isn’t hotter than 400 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid damaging the tiles.

Clean the surface with a bleach solution, which will help remove any remaining residue from the old grout (use 1 tablespoon of bleach per 1 gallon of water).

Apply new grout to fill in any gaps between tiles, making sure that each tile is level with its neighbors as you go along; otherwise, your floor might appear wavy once everything dries!

Applying New Grout over Old Grout

Step 1: Prepare the Surface by Cleaning the Old Grout
Wash the surface thoroughly with hot water and an abrasive sponge to remove any dirt, debris, or loose grout. If the old grout is discolored or stained, you can also use a grout cleaner. Allow the surface to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.
Step 2: Decide Whether to Remove Old Grout
Evaluate the condition of the old grout. If it’s in good condition and not cracked or damaged, you can apply new grout over the top. However, if the old grout is damaged or cracking, it’s recommended to remove it all and start fresh.
Step 3: Apply New Grout
Mix the new grout according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use a rubber float to smooth the new grout over the old grout lines, making sure to fill in all gaps and voids.
Step 4: Clean the Surface
After the new grout has dried for 10-15 minutes, use a damp sponge to wipe away any excess grout from the tile surface. Rinse the sponge frequently to avoid spreading grout haze.
Step 5: Cure and Seal the Grout
Allow the grout to cure for at least 24 hours before sealing it. Apply a grout sealer according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and allow it to dry for several hours before using the tiled surface.

Regrout the Area Using Dry Grout

To apply the grout, use a grout sponge to apply it to the joints. Then use a grout float to smooth it out and push out any excess that may have been left behind. 

Wait for 24 hours for the dry time to pass before using your shower again so that you don’t get mortar residue in your eyes or on your skin. After waiting for 24 hours, clean up any excess with a damp cloth and enjoy!

Plumbing projects often require specialized tools to get the job done right. If you’re new to DIY plumbing, check out our guide on how to use plumbing tools to learn about essential tools like pipe cutters, wrenches, and pliers.

Paint the Grout

You can also paint the grout yourself. There are several kinds of paints made specifically for tile, grout, or both. If you don’t know what to use, ask your local hardware store attendant for advice or look at their selection of products.

You should also consider using a paint that is formulated for ceramic tiles or porcelain tiles if you have those kinds of surfaces in your bathroom as well—or any other room where there may be oil stains on the flooring or walls. 

A simple search online should yield plenty results from which you can choose one that’s right for your needs!

Color Seal Your Grout Lines

How to apply the color seal:

Mix a small amount of colored grout in a mixing cup.

Apply the mixed grout to the interior of your tub or shower. This can be done with a putty knife or other appropriate tool, such as an old toothbrush. 

You will want to ensure that you get good coverage on all surfaces and corners of your walls, floor and fixtures (such as faucets).

Allow this application time to dry before applying another coat if needed; usually 1 hour is sufficient drying time for most applications.

Repairing walls can be tricky, especially when it comes to matching the texture of the surrounding area. Our guide on how to match texture on wall repair breaks down the process step-by-step and offers helpful tips on achieving a seamless repair.

Highlight Your Grout Line with a Sharpie

If you’re not a DIYer, but still want to make your grout look better, we recommend highlighting your grout line with a Sharpie. This is a simple project that can be done in about 15 minutes and will brighten up any bathroom or kitchen floor.

You Will Need:

  • White-out or white colored pencil
  • X-Acto knife (or similar) with new blade
  • Dust mask (optional)

Highlighting Your Grout Line with a Sharpie

Step 1: Clean and Dry the Surface
Wash the tiled surface with a mild cleaner and allow it to dry completely before continuing.
Step 2: Choose Your Sharpie Color
Select a Sharpie color that matches the color of your grout or complements it. If in doubt, use a black Sharpie.
Step 3: Apply the Sharpie to the Grout Lines
Using the Sharpie, trace the grout lines carefully, making sure to stay within the lines. If you get outside of the lines, use a cotton swab or damp cloth to remove the excess ink.
Step 4: Allow the Ink to Dry
After you’ve finished coloring all the grout lines, allow the Sharpie ink to dry completely before walking on the surface.
Step 5: Refresh as Needed
Depending on usage and traffic, you may need to refresh the Sharpie coloring every few months. Simply repeat the process if you notice the color fading.

Remove the Tile and Start Over Again.

If you’re ready to start over, remove the tile and grout, adhesive and wall surface.

Use a scraper or putty knife to remove the old tile from your shower walls. Be careful not to damage the drywall or any other surfaces in your bathroom if you have to use too much force.

Remove all of the old grout from between each of your new tiles before removing them from their shelves in order to ensure that there is no leftover residue remaining on them when they are installed again later on in this process. 

Once all of these pieces have been removed thoroughly clean off any excess dirt or debris using warm water mixed with mild soap or detergent as well as an abrasive cleaning product such as Comet™ brand scouring powder so that any residual dirt does not cause further problems later on down the road during installation procedures (for example; someone could cut themselves while working with sharp tools).

Siding damage can occur for a variety of reasons, from weather-related wear and tear to accidental impact damage. If you’re dealing with damaged siding, check out our guide on how to repair roof siding for tips on identifying and fixing the problem.

Solid Surface with Laminate Tile Laying Over Them.

If you have solid surface with laminate tile laying over them, it’s possible to replace the laminate tile with real tile. 

You can also use a groutable vinyl tile or waterproof board like cement backer board. If you want to keep the tiles but don’t want to re-grout them, use epoxy grout instead of regular concrete or mortar. This would be a good choice if your tiles are still in good condition and only need some repairs.

In order for this method to work effectively, make sure the existing tiles are not stuck on too firmly (if so, try using an adhesive remover), making sure there is no mold or mildew between them before cleaning off each one separately with soap and water (do NOT scrub) then let dry for 5 minutes before removing any excess water from under each piece by rolling out some newspaper underneath each one carefully so as not damage any surrounding areas of wallpaper etc…

Fiber Glass Panels with Ceramic Tile Laying Over Them.

Fiberglass panels are not a good choice for bathroom walls because they are not waterproof and do not hold up well to moisture. 

Since fiberglass is made from glass, it can be easily damaged by water or steam. When installed in a bathroom, the panel will be exposed to steam from showers or hot tubs, as well as moisture from humid air inside the room. 

In addition, fiberglass does not retain heat very well and can trap moisture if left untreated with sealants that prevent mold growth on both sides of each tile (the bottom side should also be treated).

Home repairs can be expensive, but there are ways to save money and stretch your budget. Check out our pro tips on saving for home repairs to learn about strategies like setting aside a repair fund and using credit cards wisely to avoid high interest rates.

Your Shower Walls are Covered in Sheetrock, Not Backer Board

If you have sheetrock on your walls, you will need to remove the drywall and replace it with backer board. Sheetrock is not waterproof, so it does not make a good backer board.

You can use cement board for backer board. It’s made from cement and fiberglass mesh, which makes it really strong and durable. 

This kind of material is great for bathrooms because it resists moisture better than other types of wallboard or plywood.

 You can also use tile backer board if you’re installing tile in your bathroom or shower area. Tile backer board is made from cement and plastic fibers as well as reinforced fibers that help keep its shape over time even after being exposed to moisture regularly

Your Tiles Are Underground and Not Here to Stay.

Let’s say you have a tile floor and it is not here to stay. It’s underground, so let’s assume it’ll be there for years and years. 

You’re wrong! You see, tiles are made of clay. Clay is kind of like dirt. Dirt is a lot like sand, except the dirt has more water in it than sand does (which is why people make mud pies with it). 

Sand comes from rocks because rocks are also made out of minerals (like calcium carbonate) that were once part of an ocean floor or river bottom but got buried over time by other stuff being built on top of them that eventually became soil—soil being mostly clay with some humus mixed in for good measure. 

If you’ve ever seen a photo from space where there was no water around anywhere, then you know how much soil looks like nothing but more soil spread out across miles upon miles until finally reaching an edge where there isn’t any more land at all except maybe another planet or star system far away from here! 

That’s what makes up most planets’ surfaces: soil which means there could be some kind


We hope we’ve given you some ideas for how to tackle the problem of grout that is stained. If nothing else, there’s always bleach! 

But if you’re looking for a permanent solution, it might be time to think about replacing your old tiles with new ones that can withstand heavy use and repeated cleanings.

Further Reading

If you’re interested in learning more about DIY grout repair, check out these helpful resources:

Lowe’s: How to Repair Tile Grout – A comprehensive guide to repairing tile grout. Includes step-by-step instructions and helpful tips.

Bob Vila: Grout Repair: A Comprehensive Guide – Another detailed guide that covers all aspects of grout repair. Offers advice on choosing the right type of grout and tools.

The Family Handyman: How to Repair Grout That’s Cracking – A useful resource for homeowners who need to repair cracked grout. Includes tips on how to prevent future damage.


What tools do I need for a DIY grout repair project?

Some of the essential tools you’ll need for a grout repair project include a grout saw, a putty knife or scraper, grout float, and grout sealer. Make sure you have the right tools on hand before starting the project.

Can I fix cracked or damaged grout myself?

Yes, with the right tools and techniques, you can repair damaged or cracked grout yourself. However, if the damage is extensive or the tiles are loose, it’s best to call a professional.

How can I prevent grout damage?

One of the easiest ways to prevent grout damage is to keep it clean and dry. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners that can damage the grout. You should also reseal the grout every year to help protect it from moisture and stains.

What should I do if my grout is discolored or stained?

If your grout is discolored or stained, you can try cleaning it with a specialized grout cleaner or a mixture of baking soda and vinegar. For deep stains, you may need to replace the grout entirely.

How do I know if I need to reseal my grout?

To determine if your grout needs to be resealed, pour a small amount of water on the grout and wait 10-15 minutes. If the water has been absorbed by the grout, it’s time to reseal. If the water beads up on the grout, it’s still sealed.