Tiles that have been installed improperly or that are several years old may suddenly fall off your counter. So what do you do when this happens? And can the tile be placed back into its position? We have researched the answer to these questions for you.
You have two choices when it comes to falling kitchen tiles. You can repair the tile by removing the original grout and old adhesive and then reattaching the tile. Or, you can replace the entire section of tile, assuming that they will eventually fall off as well. However, it's best not to wait too long to repair or replace the tile as moisture can seep behind the tile, making it easier to fall off.
There are a few different adhesives that work well for repairing kitchen tile. However, it's essential to discern whether the tile should be replaced or repaired. Continue reading to learn more about how to repair and replace kitchen tiles.
How do you repair tile grout on countertops?
The first thing to do is to remove any crumbling or old grout from the countertop. You can use a putty knife or grout removal tool to do this.
Next, you'll need to clean off the tile and apply a sealant to its back and the area from which it fell. Finally, apply a new coat of grout and then apply a sealant.
How do you Regrout tile around a kitchen sink?
Before repairing the tiles, it's best to make a list of all of the tools and materials that you will need beforehand. Let's take a look at how to get it done.
Things you'll need:
- Tile grout
- Putty knife
- Mildew remover (or diluted bleach)
- 2-gallon bucket
- Grout sealer
1. Remove old grout
Remove any broken, loose, or damaged grout using your grout removal tool or putty knife. Start slowly down at the middle of the grout line to avoid damaging any of the tiles.
You can also use a vacuum with a handheld attachment to remove any remaining particles and dust.
After you remove all of the old grout, apply a mildew remover or diluted bleach to the tiles to clean them. You'll also want to apply a degreaser to make sure that the new grout will adhere well to the tile.
If the tile is covered with grease or food particles, you may need to use a plastic scrubber to remove it. It also helps to apply soapy water to first soften the debris.
2. Prepare the grout mixture
Next, take out your two-gallon bucket and pour the grout mixture into it. Then add the recommended amount of water and stir it using a trowel or putty knife.
The grout should have a thick but consistent texture, similar to that of cake batter.
Be sure to work fast to prevent the grout from drying while it is in the bucket. If you're using ready-made grout, be sure to purchase enough buckets for the task.
To do this, you'll need to measure the square footage of the tile area beforehand.
3. Apply the grout
Use your putty knife or a trowel to remove the grout from the bucket and apply it to the area. Try not to cover more than an 8-inch section at a time to prevent gaps.
Note that you will inevitably get grout on the tile, so take your damp cloth and wipe it off when necessary. This will prevent the grout from drying on the tile.
Continue applying the grout until you have filled all of the lines. Next, allow the grout to drive for the time recommended by the manufacturer.
4. Clean the tile
Next, take your damp cloth and go over the tile to remove any grout. If the tile appears hazy, you'll need to apply more cleaner to remove the grout residue from it.
Rinse the cloth or sponge as often as needed to remove all of the grout from the tile. Use a dry towel or cloth to try the tile.
5. Apply sealer
Apply sealer to the grout once it has dried completely. Most sealers come with an applicator bottle or can be applied using a caulk gun.
Roll the sealer along the grout lines going, making sure to completely saturate the grout. Wipe up any excess sealer using your damp cloth.
Applying a second coat of sealer is optional, but if you do, make sure that the first coat is completely dry.
Check out this grout sealer on Amazon.
Can tile be glued back together?
Yes, tile can be glued back together using adhesive. Sometimes tile may fall and crack or it may crack while it is still on the counter.
So if the tile is broken into too many pieces, it may be best to replace it completely. However, if there are only small hairline cracks, you can repair it.
If you can gather all of the pieces of tile, you can use adhesive to glue it back together and then place it back on the counter. Let's take a look at how to do it. Here's a quick overview of how to do it:
Things you'll need:
- Putty knife
- Grout Sealant
1. Remove the tile
Completely remove the tile using a chisel or putty knife. You will need to exercise extreme caution to avoid chipping the tile. However, if all of the pieces are broken, simply gather them together and set them aside.
2. Clean the tile
Next, take soapy dishwater, bleach, or a tile cleaner to clean the damaged tile and the surrounding grout.
This will ensure that the tile bonds well to the surface. Then take a dry cloth or towel and dry the tile. Make sure that it is completely dry before moving to the next steps.
Find this tile cleaner on Amazon.
3. Prepare and apply the epoxy
Next, remove the contents of your epoxy kit and mix the solution together. These kits usually come in a two-part solution of resin and hardener that will need to be combined and then applied to the tile.
After preparing the epoxy, apply it to the edges of the broken tile using a toothpick. Next, carefully place the broken tile pieces together in their original shape and hold them together for about 30 seconds.
4. Apply adhesive and reattach the tile
Next, take your tile adhesive and apply it to the tile and counter using a putty knife or trowel. Make sure to wipe any excess adhesive with a cloth.
Find this epoxy solution on Amazon.
5. Paint the epoxy (optional)
If you were unable to find epoxy that matches the color of the tile, you could always paint it afterward.
Once the epoxy cures, apply the paint using a small paintbrush. It's best to apply at least one additional coat of paint to avoid peeling.
Learn more about this paintbrush set on Amazon.
What adhesive sticks to porcelain tile?
The best adhesives to use for porcelain tile include epoxy tile mortar, pre-mixed adhesive, or thinset. Let's take a look at each.
Pre-mixed adhesive comes ready to use and can be applied immediately. You'll typically find it in one quart or gallon-sized containers.
Its price can range anywhere from $15 to over $50 for a bucket. This adhesive is fairly easy to use, though it is not recommended for all applications.
Note that this adhesive dries very quickly, so you should use it only if you have experienced applying tile.
Thinset is a pre-packaged powder that can be combined with water or other additives to create a paste. Thinset has a slippery, smooth, and gritty consistency, similar to that of mud.
The powder can be mixed-use in a trowel or concrete mixing tool. Thinset is best used for larger tile applications, and it's known to be one of the most reliable adhesives on the market.
Read more about this trowel on Amazon.
Epoxy Tile Adhesive
You can also use epoxy tile for porcelain tile. This is recommended for tile repair where hardness and extra strength are needed.
It can be used for indoor and outdoor applications, and it's often used in industrial buildings for its corrosion resistance.
Wrapping Things Up
We hope this post has helped to illustrate what to do if your kitchen tile falls off of the counter. Remember, small hairline cracks can easily be fixed using a tile repair kit.
However, if the crack is significant, you may find it easier to replace the tile completely.
Before you go, be sure to check out our other posts:
How To Get Rid Of Ants On Kitchen Counters