Once you’ve made your tile selection, the next step is to look at grouts. Clients often leave this to the tiler, but this may not give you the look you’re after. With most modern rectified, square-edged porcelain tiles, your grout lines may only be 1.5mm to 2mm wide. At this width, the grout line is quite narrow, and so the usual approach to is go for a colour-matched or blended tone, so the grout line is relatively unobtrusive. As a general rule, the mid-toned grout colours are the most serviceable and colour fast. Over time, you are more likely to see discolouration and stains on the darkest and lightest grouts. If your tile has a strong mix of colours, the usual approach is to choose grout that is closer to the darker than the lighter tones of the tile.
While colour matching is a common strategy, there are situations where the grout can be used for impact and contrast. So, for instance, with a navy or charcoal tile, the best choice might be a light grey, which really makes the tile pop. Similarly, with white subway tiles, clients often opt for greys, charcoals or even black grouts, to maximise the impact of the tiles, or to relate to the benchtops or cabinetry. Where clients are looking for strong bursts of colour, Reptiles can also source some stronger primary coloured and jewel toned grouts. To check out Mapei’s full range of colours, follow this link. https://www.mapei.com/nz/en/tools-and-downloads/coloured-grouts-and-sealants
There are also different kinds of grouts, and it is worth considering your options. Grout manufacturing technology has improved considerably in recent times. Our standard Mapei UltraColor Plus range, https://www.mapei.com/nz/en/products-and-solutions/products/detail/ultracolor-plus, offers high performance, polymer modified anti-efflorescence grout, with water repellent and antimould technology. The BioBlock technology of this grout is intended help block various types of mould from forming and proliferating in humid conditions. UltraColor Plus also has hydrophobic additives which make it water-repellent and less prone to dirtiness. The other option is to use epoxy based grout, such as the Mapei Kerapoxy range, https://www.mapei.com/nz/en/products-and-solutions/products/detail/kerapoxy, which is particularly popular in wet areas, swimming pools and kitchens. This grout is acid resistant and particularly recommended where a high level of hygiene is required. Epoxy grouts are easy to clean, offer better stain resistance and are waterproof. Because epoxy grouts are more difficult to install, tilers typically charge extra for this, but in many cases it is money well spent.
If any further details or clarifications about grout colours or products are required, the knowledgeable and friendly Reptiles team are always happy to help.