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how do re-caulk or re-grout a kitchen sink (tile counter top)? Answered



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10 years ago

I'm going to make a couple of assumptions; that you are wanting to seal a sink that is leaking around the rim and that the sink is a drop-in type common to tile countertops.
First go to a hardware/plumbing supply store and buy a small can or container of stainless plumber's putty. A 12 ounce can will run around $4-$5.
Shut off the water at the supply line valves.
Disconnect the waterlines to the faucet and the drainlines to the sink
Loosen the sink clamps from under the countertop with a screwdriver or adjustable wrench.
Lift the sink out of the countertop and lay it down where you can get to the underside of the sink. You may need a little help here, a porcelain sink can be pretty heavy for one person
If the sink uses a sink rim remove it with the sink.
Now is a good time to check for loose tiles around the sink hole cut-out in the countertop and repair if needed.
Clean off any old sealant from the tile and the underside of the sink.
Take a golf ball size glob of the putty and roll it out into a long snake about a 1/4" or so in diameter like child's clay.
The putty snake should be thick enough so that it touches the countertop before the sink and some oozes out when the sink is re-set. Don't leave any gaps in the putty around the perimeter of the sink.
Re-install the sink, pressing down all around the edges to seat it in the putty. Replace the sink clamps, clean up any putty that oozed from around the rim, reconnect the plumbing and you are finished


10 years ago

Step 1
purchase a grout removal tool. There are a variety of removal tools, from a simple hand-held gizmo to power tool options (dremel, etc.). Visit a home improvement store and ask for help in selecting one

While you're there, you may as well pick up new grout, in whatever color you're going to use. It can be purchased as a powder or a premix. I prefer powder.

Also, purchase a grout application tool, slicone grout line sealer, and plastic tarp/mylar if you don't have any clean one handy.

Step 2.
Wash the surface well with cleanser etc. If there is mold, black mold, mildew, etc., use a concntrated white vinegar solution to do a secondary wash. (Rinse the countertop thoroughly after using the white vinegar!)

Step 3
remove the grout from your tile surface to a depth of the tile thickness and thoroughly remove all debris (vaccuum, etc.). While you're here, check the tiles at the grout lines to ensure they're nice and clean where the grout will be adhering. I personally get a bit overboard about it (bathrooms) and wipe the whole thing several times with Isopropyl alcohol and allow to dry before continuing...(A hair dyer works well for speeding it up, but be careful, since alcohol is of course quite flammable...anyway. imo it's better to do a bit much prep than to come back and have a section peel

Step 4
mix (if necessary) and apply new grout, pressing it thoroughly into the grout lines using a grout application tool (basically a spatula with a flexible rubber-like blade edge. work on diagonals to the grout lines to improve coverage

Step 5
Allow grout to "rest" for ~15 minutes to 1/2 hour (see directions on grout material container)

Step 6.
Using clean damped sponge, wipe excess grout for grout lines, making sure to work on diagonals to the grout lines to prevent gouging material from grout lines.

Step 7
Allow to dry for another few hours. Polish surface with clean dry rag/etc, again, make sure to go on diagonals to prevent accidental damage to still "tender" grout lines

Step 8.
Cover countertop with tarp/etc and allow to cure 24 hours minimum. (again, see mfg directions on grout container)

Step 9
Apply sealer to grout lines. Allow to cure for time specified by mfg.

You're done


10 years ago

Is the sink drop-in, bottom mount, tile-over or what?


Answer 10 years ago

Yeh, a photo would help.

Failing that, though, re-grouting tiles is usually just a matter of scraping out a large part of what is there, making sure the gaps are all clean and dust-free, then re-grouting with normal grout in the normal manner.

However, it is possible to find products that re-whiten what grout you already have, which may be less work if you are only bothered about dis-colouration.