How to Caulk a Bathroom: 5 Tips for Beginners
Having proper seals around your bathroom fixtures is essential in order to prevent the moisture generated there from infiltrating into the rest of your house. Water from your shower, sink and toilet can easily seep into the walls and floor, causing mould growth and structural damage. Protecting your home from water infiltration is a good reason to prioritize bathroom renovation and re-caulking.
In this article, find out how to caulk a bathroom and create durable, aesthetically-pleasing seals that will protect your home from moisture.
1 – Choose the right sealant
Not every sealant is made for bathroom use. While sealants that are made for exterior windows, for example, must be able to withstand extreme temperature fluctuations and UV rays, what’s most important for bathroom sealants is mould resistance and a strong seal against moisture.
Silicone sealants are particularly well suited for this application, so when preparing to caulk your bathroom, select a silicone sealant that is specifically designed to be mould and mildew resistant.
2 – Remove old sealant
When caulking a bathroom, it’s extremely important to remove old sealant before applying new sealant. If you simply caulk over the old sealant, you won’t get a good seal and the new sealant will leak and crack, leaving your home vulnerable to moisture infiltration.
It’s a good idea to use caulk remover to help loosen the old sealant’s hold on the surface and make it easier to clean. Just remember to let the caulk remover evaporate completely before applying your new sealant!
3 – Apply the sealant correctly
First, be careful when cutting the tip of the sealant—if you cut too far down, the opening will be too wide and too much sealant will come out! When applying the sealant, maintain consistent pressure and stop every two feet to shape the sealant you’ve just applied before it has a chance to dry.
4 – Mind the gaps
Sealants are not meant to be used to fill up large gaps. If your gap is more than half an inch deep and a quarter of an inch wide, you’ll need to use a backer rod. Backer rods are flexible foam cylinders that come in a variety of sizes and are made specifically for this purpose. Inserting backer rods into particularly large gaps before caulking them will help give the sealant the hourglass shape that ensures an optimal seal.
5 – Use the right tools
In addition to caulk remover and backer rods, there are a variety of other products and tools you can use to facilitate the caulking process. A caulking gun makes it easy to apply consistent pressure and ensure that the sealant comes out evenly. There are many different shapes of nozzles available for hard-to-reach corners. Finally, shaping tools can help you smooth the sealant and make sure it has a neat, aesthetically-pleasing finish.
Bathroom caulking: it’s worth doing right!
The bathroom is one of the places in the house that generates the most moisture and humidity. It’s vital for bathroom fixtures to be properly sealed to prevent this moisture from penetrating into the rest of the house. By following our bathroom caulking instructions, you can ensure that your seals will remain in good condition for years to come!