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Selecting a Grout for Tile

Learn to select the right grout for your tile project. The type of grout, the color, and its performance are crucial factors for your decision.

Grout is used to fill the spaces between tiles and support them on the surface of installation. Grout comes in various colors and shades, and it keeps your tile from expanding and shifting with the change in temperature and moisture level.

There are three traditional types of grout available for tile installation, as well as advanced formulas engineered for color consistency and durability. While you should always research a grout that caters to your specific project, the basic three types are cement, pre-mixed, and epoxy.


  • Sanded can be used for 1/8" to 1/4" joints
  • Unsanded can be used for 1/16" to 1/8" joints


  • Best used for any spacer between 1/16" - 1/8"
  • Often used with most tiles with easily scratched surfaces (i.e. stone, glass)


  • No mixing
  • Easy cleaning
  • No sealing required

Traditional grout can gather mold and mildew if it isn't maintained with a sealant. So consider recent advances in grout technology that combine the benefits of epoxy and urethane grouts into a single product. Newer products can offer a more consistent color-lasting guarantee and durability that wards off mold and mildew that naturally occurs with traditional grout.

You can use tile and stone in an array of places (walls, floors, wet areas, outside, etc. according to product specifications), but depending on the location, they may be exposed to moisture, which can lead to issues of mold and mildew. Therefore, it’s crucial to consider location and moisture level when selecting grout.

Many grouts are naturally porous and absorb spills, so beware of potential staining issues when selecting grout and grout color. From stains associated with heavy foot traffic to those from spills of liquids and beverages, grout can harbor unwanted discoloring.

Even though grout can enhance the aesthetics of a design, its purpose is to keep your tiles securely in place and maintain a quality installation. Because tile and stone products are often a lifetime choice, it’s imperative to choose a grout that performs long-term against moisture, staining, and mold. Rely on your installers’ expertise to minimize potential risks.

Grout color is an important consideration for your tile installation. In determining the grout color that’s right for your design, consider whether you’d like the grout to be matching, contrasting, or an accent tone.


If you match your tile and grout colors, your lines blend together, and the grout is less noticeable. It creates a less pronounced and more continuous appearance in your design.


Contrasting your grout against your tile will draw attention to your pattern and layout. This is a technique seen frequently, for instance using light tiles with dark grout. Contrasting, bold choices can add a distinct look and charm to a design.


Choosing a tile grout color can be a challenge when you have multi-colored tile or a mosaic tile with several hues in a color family. In this case, any grout color in the spectrum of colors of the tile can accent and complement the overall installation job nicely.

visualize your new space

Use our design tools to match tile and grout colors.