Step 7: Apply the Grout

Apply the grout
Photo by: Webb Chappell
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Complete each end wall by installing rounded-end bullnose tile along the edges. Allow the mastic to cure overnight.

Next, pour a quart of fortified unsanded tile grout into a bucket. Mix in just enough water or latex additive (which strengthens grout) to create a mayonnaiselike consistency.

Place some grout on a rubber trowel and smear it diagonally across the tiled surface, forcing it deep into every joint. Apply grout to all three walls in this manner.

Let the grout cure for 15 to 20 minutes, then wipe the tiles with a large damp sponge held flat against the wall. Rinse the sponge often in clean water.

The next day, buff the remaining grout haze off the tiles with a clean, dry cloth.

Finally, use siliconized acrylic caulk that matches your grout color to fill the joint between the tub and first course of tile.
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    Tools List

    • notched trowel
      Notched trowel,
      used to apply tile mastic
    • grout sponge
      Grout sponge,
      for wiping tiles clean
    • rubber trowel
      Rubber trowel,
      for applying the grout
    • drill
      Drill with diamond-grit hole saw,
      for drilling holes in tile
    • tile nippers
      Tile nippers,
      used to notch tiles to fit around plumbing
    • margin trowel
      Margin trowel,
      used to mix mortar and grout
    • tile cutter
      Tile cutter,
      rents for $15 to $20 a day
    • two-foot level
      Level and straightedge
    • drywall knife
      4-in. drywall knife,
      to embed joint tape in mortar
    • caulk gun
      Caulking gun with siliconized acrylic caulk

    Shopping List

    1. GLAZED CERAMIC TILE

    2. LATEX TILE MASTIC

    3. UNSANDED TILE GROUT

    4. CEMENT BACKER BOARD

    5. BACKER BOARD SCREWS

    6. FIBERGLASS-MESH JOINT TAPE

    7. THINSET MORTAR

    for skim-coating the backer board



    8. LATEX-BASED GROUT ADDITIVE

    to strengthen the grout