How to grout a patio – top tips for a perfect patio

This Morning: David Domoney gives advice on cleaning your patio

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The UK sees freezing temperatures most of the year round, which can leave even the tidiest outdoors areas looking a bit worse for wear. Cracked grouting can leave gaps in between stones, making way for weeds to flourish in spring which can make outdoor spaces look very messy and dishevelled. According to data firm SEMrush, google searches for ‘how to grout a patio’ have risen by 950 percent in the last two months, so, to get back on track, here’s how to grout your patio.

Inevitably, more and more people have been looking to take care of their outdoors spaces over the past year or so as a result of the lockdown in the UK. 

Olga Arienko, head of Global Marketing at SEMrush said: “Public concerns about going to the shops, combines with increased free time spent at home and an unusual spell of sunny weather are combining to encourage people to make the most of their gardens wile also limiting their social exposure.

“In this period of high stress and blitz spirit across the nation, these stats show that many are increasingly turning to tending their back gardens and seeking to become more self-sufficient.

“As an additional bonus, gardening advocates frequently talk about the mental health benefits of growing your own plants and vegetables.”

How to grout a patio

Home improvement site Hunker says: “There are two procedures for grouting patio pavers, and neither is difficult for the average home handy person to accomplish.

“The first way requires the use of a grout bag filled with mortar or grout, and the second requires the use of a stiff-bristled brush and semi-dry grout or mortar.

“Both ways are equally effective, so the choice really depends on the materials and tools at hand.”

Preparation

Before you do any grouting, you should make sure the tiles are sealed first.

Even though it may seem like extra, unnecessary work, it prevents the paving stones from becoming stained by the mortar or grout.

For this, you can use any commercial concrete waterproofer or sealer, allowing to dry for 24 hours to get the best result.

In terms of the grout itself, the amount of water you will need will be outlined on the packaging.

When mixing, you should not add all the water at once but instead start with half and mix the rest in small bits.

Mixing grout can be down with a trowel, or, you can use a grinder tool with a mixer attached.

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Grouting the patio

Grouting is done in small patches of just a few square feet, and it is advised you start far away from any doorway to prevent yourself from being stuck outside.

With your padded grout float, scoop up a cup-size portion of grout and place it on the surface.

With your float held at a 30-degree angle, spread the grout across the surface, diagonally to the joints.

Grouts should be spread evenly, so keep your eye out for any gaps in the coverage. Next, with a wet grout sponge, clean the surface in circular motions, diagonally to the joints in the tile.

Rinse the sponge often. After you have cleaned the surface off the tiles, run the sponge along the joints to form and recess the grout in the joints.

Repeat this process across the whole floor.

Removing haze

After grouting, make sure to stay off the floor for at least 24 hours. After the grout has finished drying, the tiles may appear hazy.

If mopping the floor does not remove this, remnants of the grout are most probably stuck to the surface of the tile. There are products called grout haze removers for this process.

Sealing the patio

Because the grout will be outside and exposed to the weather, it should definitely be sealed. If you choose not to seal the grout, liquids and other soils may stain the material gradually over a period of time.

Penetrating sealers are available at most hardware and DIY stores, as well as tile shops. Applying it to the grout is a simple process; use a foam brush to apply the sealant to the grout.

This process should be repeated once a year.

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