What Happens When Caulking Is Damaged In Your Bathroom?
How To Recaulk Your Bathroom: An Easy How -To On Caulking
The most common reason that caulking gets damaged in tubs around bathroom tile is that it simply wears out. Just think of how many showers or baths you take at home, and how often your bathroom sink and bathtub are used. Recaulking is something that should be observed and updated as regular home maintenance.
If caulking is left when it is not in good condition that makes for a broken seal between the water that you use daily for showers or baths and the bones of your home. Water damage is a lot more costly to fix than caulking in your bathroom. So we are here to help you learn dow to do it yourself.
Step One: Determine What Areas Of Caulking Need To Be Repaired
The first step is to indicate where the caulking is that needs to be repaired. Check around the seams of the inside of your bathtub or shower as well as the areas where your bathtub meets your floor. Not to be missed is the areas around faucets and it is always a good idea to check sinks and vanities. Checking to see what caulking needs to be replaced is an important first step, because this will help you to decide how much materials you will need to replace the worn out caulking yourself. The condition of caulking is important too, you will need to take note if there has been any mold or mildew buildup on caulking before you get started.
Step Two: Remove Old Caulking
The next step is to remove your caulking. Hardware or your local home improvement stores offer products that will help to soften caulking so that it is easier to remove. Follow the directions on the product as one item may vary from another. After you follow the product's instructions you can use a plastic putty scraper to remove the caulking. Some suggest scoring the old caulking for easier removal. Take note that if you use a sharp tool to score old caulking, you should be very careful to not scratch bathroom porcelain, ceramics or surfaces.
Step Three: Clean The Affected Areas For Mold & Mildew Before Caulking Where Necessary
If you had mildew on your caulking you may decide to add this extra step of cleaning the area around your old caulking. This may lengthen the process, but can make all the difference in terms of the longevity of your new caulking.
Step Three: Choose & Purchase Materials Required For Caulking
To select a new caulking there are many varieties available at your local hardware or home improvement store. You may decide to use a silicone based product if mold was present or even if you just want to take care and caution to not encounter mold or mildew in the future. One thing is for sure, you must use a caulking that is suitable specifically for bathrooms. These usually come in a large tube that you would load into a caulking gun for application.
Step Four: Prepare Your Bathroom For Caulking Clean Professional Lines
When the areas to be caulked are cleaned and dried, you can use painters take (or masking tape if you're in a pinch) to isolate the area where the caulking will be applied. This step will allow you to finish off with clean and professional looking lines.
Step Five: Caulking Your Bathroom
Now we are ready to caulk! Have a bucket of water and lots of paper towels or rags on hand before you begin. Cut a hole in the end of your caulking tube on a 45 degree angle. Cutting less off of the tip will help you to gage how big you want your hole to be-as you can always cut off a little bit more to get a bigger hole. Use the area that you have taped off as a guideline to help you to determine how much flow of caulking you will need. You should be able to have a free flowing stream from your caulking gun, and not have to apply too much pressure where caulking comes out of the gun in spurts or beads.
Go ahead and apply caulking to the area that you have taped off. Be sure to apply in a steady stream. Try to guide the caulking gun to apply caulking evenly in a steady stream.
Once caulking is applied, use your finger to smooth out the line of caulking for a finished look-and to seal off the area.
Step Six: Touch Up Your Caulking
Peel off the painters taped off area at a 45 degree angle to finish your newly caulked bathroom. Painters tape does not have to be pulled off immediately, but must be pulled off before the caulking dries. If you peel back the painters tape when your home maintenance project is still wet, this will allow you to wipe off or touch up any excess caulking that may have seeped underneath.
Step Seven: Allow Your Caulking To Dry & Set
A do it yourself caulking project or home maintenance project like this one requires at least 24 hours of drying time before you are able to get it wet or use your shower facility. You should plan for this in advance before getting started. We always wait at least 36 hours or 48 hours just to be sure.
Step Eight: Enjoy Your New Caulking
You did it! You can now sit back and enjoy your newly caulked bathroom. You will be more at ease knowing that you chose a home maintenance project to maintain your bathroom at home, and prevent future damage. Take a photo and post it in the comments below and show us that you did it yourself! We would love to see your handiwork!!