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Ceramic Tile Repairs: Floor Tile Replacement and Shower Re-grouts

By Chris Lawson

Tile repairs are a very specialized service and it can be hard to get tile contractors interested in small, sometimes difficult, detailed repairs. The trick to these repairs is to remove and replace the cracked or broken materials without it being obvious that it has been repaired. To complete these repairs and have it not look like an afterthought is a very tricky undertaking.

The first step is to remove the grout around the targeted tile so as not to disturb the tiles around it that will not be removed. Grout binds together tiles and gives it solidity and if not removed then action against one tile can affect others. Many times it takes a hammer and a chisel to remove tiles and if the grout is not removed first then the impact can break surrounding tiles as well.

After the grout is removed, the tile to be replaced can be broken from the middle out in pieces and removed carefully using the hammer and chisel a little at a time or all at once if the tile is not bonded very well. If it is bonded strongly, then a little at a time is the only way to remove it. After the tile is removed, the task of chipping off the thin set or adhesive is the next step and can be very difficult and time-consuming - as well as creating a mess and a lot of dust! Again, the hammer and chisel will be your best bet unless you have an electric alternative. Once you've removed all the adhesive, you can re-adhere your replacement tile back in place of the one you've removed, wait some time for it to dry, and then re-grout the repaired area with the same color grout as the rest of the area around the repair.

Shower re-grouts are in some ways much easier because you don't have to worry about breaking tiles from removal. But scraping and cleaning of the grout and old caulk can be very patience-testing. Any loose grout or caulk has to be removed completely before the new can be applied. The trick to these repairs is getting the new grout to adhere to the old grout. This is generally accomplished by removing enough grout from the area so the new grout has room to stay. Generally you need 1/8 of a inch of new grout on top of the old for it to adhere and not flake out later. Repairs are in some ways much harder than standard installations and in many cases you should get a professional to come out and implement the repair if possible. If you can't seem to gather any interest from any tile guys to do your repair, I will be glad to assist you in any way I can - just give me a call and I'll gladly walk you through it right over the phone!

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Diana Smith

What an excellent article! What exactly is a "guide" though? Is it a do it yourself term? Thanks


Diana Smith

Nope. It's actually a title that Mass Realty gives you when they ask you to become a contributor. Chris is an article contributor, an expert and a guide. Nice.....hehe

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Anthony lawn

Thanks for sharing, for more visit :


Diana Smith

Why are you thanking him for writing an article about tile repair, but then you post your own website for your own tile repair service. I think that's pretty crummy. Earn your own posts. Thanks.

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About The Author

My name is Chris Lawson, and I am the owner and operator of Tile Excellence. I offer...

Phone: (978) 471-9127

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