Epoxy vs Cementitious Grout
Redoing or applying new tiles to your interiors and not sure about choosing between epoxy grout or cementitious grout? Here is a quick comparison to help you make the right choice.
Whether it is kitchen or bathroom tiling, grouting is crucial for keeping the tiles firmly in place and giving them a clean look. Grouting is the process of filling gaps between tiles with a thick adhesive paste, also called grout, that helps keep the tiles in place. Tile grouts are used in flooring, countertops, and walls to give the tiles a clean look and provide a smooth finish hiding the dissimilar surface underneath.
Depending on humidity, foundation settling, the room’s temperature, the material used, and other factors, tile grouts develop cracks over time. They can even result in tiles getting dislodged. So grouting process has to be monitored by a professional. The grout mix should contain the right amount of adhesive, water, and other materials ensuring that they do not leave any air pockets behind and are strong enough to hold the tiles.
Thus, over time or depending on the condition of the existing grout, old or damaged grout needs to be re-grouted by removing the old or poorly installed grout and replacing it with a fresh one.åÊIf you are re-grouting your existing home or planning to start the grouting process fresh off, you need to take some key decisions. As you begin the process, you will be faced with an important question, whether to go for epoxy grout or cementitious grout?
If you are faced with a similar dilemma, here is a quick comparison to help you pick the ideal option for your needs.åÊHere are a few common questions about grouting and the key aspects of selecting between epoxy grouting and cement grouting.
What Is Epoxy Grout?
Epoxy grout is a popular option for tiling that requires no cement or water in the premixing process. It is made from two-part epoxy resins, making it durable, non-porous, and stain-resistant. The tiles with epoxy grout are more likely to last longer, thanks to the grout’s properties that make it a potent bonding agent.
Due to its unique properties and long-lasting features, epoxy for tile grout works best for tiling in areas containing grease or acids and in humid conditions. Thus, it is most popular in kitchen tiling for countertops, bathrooms, floors, and other purposes.
What Is a Cementitious Grout? What Is Meant by Cementitious?
Cementitious grout is essentially a cement adhesive mixture of sand and water. The grout is often sold in its raw un-sanded variety and mixed with water for usage. Cementitious grout is used widely because it is the cheaper grouting option than epoxy grout.
However, cement grout does not have epoxy’s non-porous and stain-proof properties and can easily absorb water and other acids or stains. This leads to it developing cracks, discolouration, or even losing its adhesive properties in the long run, which is why tiles with cement grout start to be dislodged after a few years.
What Is the Difference Between Cementitious and Epoxy Grout?
As we have seen, both grouts are made using different processes and materials, giving them distinct qualities. Some of the key differences between epoxy grout and cement grout are as follows:
|Made using epoxy resin, hardner and filler materials.
|Made using water and cementitious powder mix.
|Time to set it
|Sets in quickly since the grout is in paste form.
|Takes time to set since it needs to be mixed with water.
|As the grout sets in quickly and is resistant to dust or liquid absorption, it lasts long.
|Tends to absorb dirt or liquid and thus loses its adhesive property in the long run.
|Gives a shiny look and blends with most tiles.
|Gives a natural look which blends with selected tiles.
|Cheaper Grouting Option.
|Best Used In
|All Conditions. Be it indoors and outdoors. The chemical-resistant properties make it ideal for use in harsh weather, humid conditions, and areas susceptible to greasy surfaces.
|Best used for outdoor tiling, and is also most popularly used in the kitchen, bathroom or other areas.
Which Is Better, Cement Grout or Epoxy Grout?
As we have seen in the differences, epoxy grout is chemical resistant, waterproof, strong, and durable. Unlike cement grout, epoxy grout for tiles is less susceptible to developing cracks, stains, chemical reactions, and corrosion due to harsh climate or weather conditions and is ideal for use in humid areas. This higher durability and functional properties make it suitable for use indoors and outdoors, and thus epoxy grout is slowly replacing cement grout as the popular choice.
Durability and maintenance are significant areas where the epoxy group trumps cement grout. Cement grout can work well once installed but needs proper care and maintenance since cement grout must be sealed and requires appropriate cleaning to get the shiny look since it can stain easily. On the other hand, epoxy grout can be cleaned easily with water, bleach, or vinegar and does not need to be sealed.
When to Use Which Grout?
Due to its many properties, epoxy grout came to be used in any condition, be it outdoor or indoor. Epoxy grout can comfortably be used in bathrooms, shower or bath areas, kitchen floors, kitchen countertops, etc. Cementitious grout is best used in areas that are not susceptible to getting wet and so is used in walls of areas like kitchens and bathrooms.
The Final Word: Is Epoxy Grout Better?
While cement grout can be cheaper, it is not the ideal option for the long term and requires regular maintenance. Most times, if the tiles start to come off or develop cracks, cementitious tiling needs to be redone and thus, incurs a higher expense over time. Epoxy rout requires light maintenance, and there is no worry about redoing the tiles over time.
So when making a choice, pick epoxy grout for your tiles. If you wonder if epoxy grout can be used over cement-based grout when retiling, the answer is yes. It can help give your tiles a much stronger adhesive and even looks cleaner. MagicBond Epoxy Tile Grout is one of the most widely used in the market. It is non-toxic, easy-to-use, chemical resistant, and has zero-stain grout, making it the ideal option for redoing and laying new tiles.