Epoxy grout is a superior, although slightly more expensive, alternative to using porous cement-based grout. The added cost can easily be justified by the durability and longevity of the epoxy grout. Epoxy grout withstands heavy traffic, doesn’t absorb moisture, and resists extreme weather conditions over time, making it last longer. In the end, it can be argued that epoxy grout is a much more cost-effective way to protect and seal your tile joints.
Concerns have been raised, however, about epoxy grout being hard to work with, and more importantly, about the safety of using epoxy grout. So, what is the bottom line. Is epoxy grout toxic?
What is Epoxy Grout?
Most epoxy grouts are made of two parts. These are resin and a hardener. When combined, the two parts create a grout that withstands staining, wear and tear from high traffic areas, and the damages extreme weather conditions can cause. As for ease of use, it’s true that earlier versions of epoxy grout could be challenging. They had to be used rather quickly once the process was started and they could be difficult to apply, with little margin for error. More recent epoxy grouts often have detergents in the hardeners, which makes it easier to clean. This has greatly improved the process of working with epoxy grout today when compared to previous years. The improved ease of use and the fact that epoxy grout is highly durable and stain resistant means it is ideal for tile projects of all types.
Is Epoxy Grout Toxic?
This is the big question. Some epoxy grouts are certainly dangerous, although there have been debates regarding the extent of the dangers. When a Utah resident contacted the Utah Department of Health regarding the health concerns associated with epoxy grout, citing chemical burns, severe allergic reactions, and continued health issues over time, the Utah Department of Health researched the issue and found that “Many of the chemicals are listed as corrosives, permeators, sensitizers, and/or irritants . . .” The Occupational Safety and health Administration (OSHA) provides a set of basic guidelines for handling epoxy grout products that includes wearing protective gear. After coming into contact with epoxy resins or grout, OSHA recommends washing your hands and the affected area using cold water and pH neutral or slightly acidic soap. For eye contact, they recommend flushing with running water for fifteen minutes before seeking medical attention. According to the Environmental Epidemiology Program (EEP), among others, many of the chemicals contained in these products are regularly the source for chemical burns.
In addition to epoxy grout, cement grout and many other grout products are considered hazardous by these very same organizations. Most of them warn against contact with the skin or eyes for a reason. The chemicals contained within can cause irritation at the least and long-term health issues in some cases. Many of the cement grouts, and even a few epoxy grouts, contain anti-microbial additives designed to help prevent mold and mildew growth. On the surface, anti-microbials seems to be a good idea, but when they make their way into bodies of water, they can kill “good” bacteria and cause harm to the balance of the environment.
Not all Epoxy Grouts Are Created Equal
While many epoxy grouts are, to varying degrees, toxic and can be harmful on a variety of levels, not all epoxy grouts are created equal. In fact, Litokol epoxy grout products live up to the claim of being non-toxic and safe for installers, animals, and for the environment as a whole. The Tile Doctor is the sole U.S. distributor of Litokol grout products, including Starlike grout. Starlike Grout is not classified as corrosive or toxic because it contains none of the harmful additives found in other epoxy grouts. That’s because Litokol and the Tile Doctor are committed to the health and safety of not only the eco-system, but for those consumers who come into contact with their products on every level, from manufacturer to installer to homeowner.
The good news is, Starlike Grout is completely safe and only an irritant. It doesn’t contain corrosives, pesticides, harmful aggregates, or dangerous fillers of any kind. Litokol grout products are respected industry wide for their quality and for their level of safety for installers and for the environment. Unlike many other grout products, Starlike Grout is completely safe on all levels without sacrificing the quality and performance of the product. As a matter of fact, Litokol has been working to develop more advanced products that meet the high standards of the project zero, a project which aims to offer the highest performance products while significantly lowering environmental and health impacts.
Starlike grout comes in a wide range of colors and textures, bringing you the ability to make creative statements using the safest epoxy grout on the market. The unique and non-toxic Starlike boutique grout comes in numerous color collections that offer 159+ colors and finishes. These include the Starlike Classic Grout Collection, which features classic colors for a more traditional approach to design, the Starlike Glamour Grout Colors collection, for flashier applications, the Starlike Metallic Grout Collection, and the Starlike Crystal Glass Grout Jewels collection, which lets you take advantage of the stunning sparkle of jewel-inspired colors. We’ve also got Starlike Crystal Glass Tile Grout, perfect for glass tile projects. This special grout is made up of small, hollow glass beads that bend and reflect light, creating a brilliant display that eliminates the need for colored grout and acts as a perfect foil for glass tile installations. Is epoxy grout toxic? Not Starlike Grout from the Tile Doctor.
To learn more about how safe Starlike Grout is, contact us any time. We will be happy to answer any questions you have and discuss how the Tile Doctor has the right grout and grout products for your needs. To reach our service center, call Toll Free 1-877-TileDoc(845-3362). Find out today why Starlike Grout and other Litokol products are trusted the world over for their quality and integrity regarding consumer and environmental safety.
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