A sample of the fascinating blogging I would do if I were home all the time
I was on the phone with a friend last night, both of us scraping away at the grout in our tubs. She read the directions on the bottle she'd bought: "Remove all old grout... they can't really mean all the old grout, can they?"
We agreed that they couldn't possibly.
The guy who owned her house had scraped some of the grout away-- not all of it-- and then put clear grout over it. So when the mildew grew between the layers of grout, she could see it, but no matter how much she scrubbed she couldn't get to it of course.
Last night, and this morning, I scraped and scraped. It became an obsession. It must be a fundamental human urge: the urge to pick at things. So satisfying when the stuff comes up in great shiny white peels, but so elusive. I had three tools: the scraper bought for the purpose, a screwdriver, and a funny little curvy pointy tool I found in the medicine cabinet, looks like it can be used for getting stuff out from between your teeth. Or retrieving ingrown hairs, maybe.
Well, no longer. Now it is a Grout Pick.
See, sometimes you can see a big string of the old grout, hiding back there behind the big piece of linoleum or whatever it is that we have instead of bathtub tile, but the opening's too small and it just won't come out. So what you do is, you angle the Grout Pick until you can pull a little wedge of it out. Don't pull too hard or it'll just break and you'll be in even worse shape. Then, with the other hand, grab the screwdriver and gently push at the grout string from the edge of the opening, until a whole bunch of it comes out. Then, when you have enough, you can just pull it out by hand.
Or you can slash and slash at it with the grouting knife, spraying showers of crumbs all over the tub, as I did last night while chatting with RW.
But I'm never gonna be able to get all the old grout. I'm afraid of what would happen if I did. It appears to be holding the linoleum to the wall.
Next up: sweeping and vacuuming the tub, then scrubbing everything near the grout line, then actually APPLYING THE NEW GROUT and letting it dry.
You don't think anyone will need to take a bath or shower in the next couple days, do you?