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a grout float spreading grout over a surface of small tiles

Grout Float

Originally contributed by Jeff Butler • last updated 12/30/2020

Not all tiling jobs are created equal! There are several things to think about, including the type of tiles or stones, the type of grout, and, of course, the type of grout float you choose to work with.

Definition

A grout float is a hand tool that is typically used to press in, smooth out, and wipe away grout from joints when working with tile or stone. Grout floats typically consist of three parts: the handle, the base, and the pad. They are typically made from wood, plastic, or steel, and can come in a variety of sizes and shapes for different jobs.

What Makes A Good Grout Float?

Depending on the type of tiling job, there are several things to think about before choosing the right grout float:

  • For most indoor applications, the rubber pad typically comes in a soft, medium, and hard pliability. Commonly, softer pads are used for walls because they are easier to use, less abrasive, and are better for getting into corners.
  • You’ll also need to know what type of grout and tile you’re working with. Harder grout float pads may scratch soft tiles, especially if you’re using a coarse grout. Softer grout float pads may not be suitable for coarser grout types.
  • You’ll also want to consider the type of material the handle is made from. Wooden handles tend to absorb more water and are more difficult to clean than rubber handles.
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