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Caulk before sealer on tile backsplash?

I am getting to the end of the backsplash project (finally). I finished grouting tonight. Next up is the caulk then sealer...or is it the sealer then the caulk...or doesn't it matter?

I am leaning toward the caulk then sealer since it seems to me that any sealer that gets where I want the caulk will prevent the caulk from adhering properly.

Neither the caulk or the sealer labels indicates one way or the other. The caulk is siliconized acrylic - sanded. The sealer is SureSeal aerosol.


A. Spruce
Re: Caulk before sealer on tile backsplash?

I'd seal before caulking, but then I've also never used an aerosol sealant, I always use the "wipe on, wipe off" method. Actually, I use a squirt bottle so that I can apply the sealer directly on the grout and not have much if any clean up of the tile. This is certainly a challenge on vertical surfaces, but you'll still have less clean up.

Re: Caulk before sealer on tile backsplash?

Sounds like sealer first then caulk. The grout package says to allow 3 days to fully cure before sealing so it looks like a Sunday project. Its a kitchen backsplash so I'll tape off behind the sink to help avoid unwanted splashes between now & then. This tile is also supposed to get sealed along with the grout so I don't have to be as careful.

The aerosol can sealer has on it "For Professional Use" which disqualifies me, but I as hoping to fake it just this once! :)
I had the wipe on / wipe off in my hand at the tile store and one of their installers brought the aerosol version out and said I would like it better. I know his work a little and trust his opinion.

I might just have this finished by Monday!

A. Spruce
Re: Caulk before sealer on tile backsplash?

Good point Yuk Yuk! Make sure that the sealer is food prep area safe. While food may never come in contact with it, your hands, utensils and cleaning things will, which will transfer it to the food and/or your body.

One other thing, a couple coats might be enough for the tile, but I can tell you that a couple sprays with aerosol isn't going to touch the grout. Grout is porus and will absorb a large amount of the sealer before it's done. When I've done floors, I've always used far more than what is indicated on the label to get a satisfactory seal.

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