Applying sanitary sealant around baths, showers and toilets sounds in theory like an easy job. Simply squeeze the tube and then smooth it with your finger. Right?
If you’ve ever tried it you’ll know it’s a lot tricker than it first seems and you can quickly get in a mess.
Sealant play’s a really important role in a bathroom. Applied properly it makes a water tight seal, a nice clean finish and also prevents the build up of damp and mould spots.
It’s worth double checking the sealant around your bath and showers as we get a lot of call out to leaks caused by silicone seals that have either been installed incorrectly or started coming away and caused damage to the downstairs ceilings.
Ok, so how to do it correctly.
Rule 1: Buy a premium sealant. We always use Dow Corning 785+ Bacteria Resistant Sanitary Silicone.
Rule 2: Buy a set of silicone cutting tools such as Fugi tools.
Rule 3: Use the right colour for the right location. As a general rule white around the edge of baths, basins and showers and clear between the floor and base of the basin and toilet.
Rule 4: Make sure you have a gap for the silicone to take into (i.e. Don’t grout the last row of tiles).
Rule 5: Make sure the gap isn’t too big. Between 3mm and 5mm ideally.
Rule 6: Cut the silicone tube nozzle at an angle using a sharp Stanley knife.
Rule 7: Make sure the area to be siliconed is completely clean and completely dry.
Rule 8: Apply the silicone so that it fires into the gap to be sealed and so that it slightly overfills the gap.
Rule 9: Use the silicone cutting tools to cut (not smooth the silicone). You should be using the sharp side of the tool and cutting away the excess silicone at a 45 degree angle.
Rule 10: Wipe away excess silicone from the tools using a big bucket of trade wipes.
Bonus Rule: Don’t overwork the silicone. Once you have a nice smooth bead with a straight edge leave it alone and don’t touch it any more. Leave the silicone to cure for 24 hrs before testing it.