How to Fix Broken Wall Tile and How to Regrout

Learn how to repair common wall tile problems such as replacing a broken tile, regrouting tile and how to fix a damaged shower cubicle.

Photo By: RTimages / Getty Images

Photo By: Ruth Jenkinson / Getty Images

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement ©2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: Charles Gullung / Getty Images

Tools Needed

Spacers - Drywall Saw - Grout Spreader - Heater - Caulking Gun - Grout Raker - Cloth - Caulk Gun - Vacuum - Drill - Safety Goggles - Scraper - Claw Hammer - Gloves - Spongs - Chisel - Adhesive Spreader

Materials Needed

Masking Tape - Grout Reviver - Trisodium Phosphate (TSP) - Fiberglass Tape - Clear Silicone Caulk - Grout - Water-Resistant Board - Latex Caulk - Tiles - Tile Adhesive - Waterproof Caulk

Remove Grout (Replacing a Broken Tile)

Use a grout raker to remove the grout from around the edge of the broken tile. Check for electricity or water supplies using a detector.

Drill Holes (Replacing a Broken Tile)

Weaken the tile surface further by drilling a number of holes through it.

Remove Sections (Replacing a Broken Tile)

Use a club hammer and chisel to remove sections of the broken tile. Be sure to wear gloves and protective goggles.

Apply Adhesive (Replacing a Broken Tile)

Apply tile adhesive to the back of a tile using an adhesive spreader.

Use Spacers (Replacing a Broken Tile)

Position the tile, checking that it sits flush. Use spacers to maintain grout gaps. When dry, remove the spacers and grout the joints.

Remove Grout (Regrouting)

Remove the old grout from the joints using a grout raker, taking care not to damage tile edges.

Vacuum Joints (Regrouting)

Vacuum out the joints in order to remove all dust and debris.

Regrout Joints (Regrouting)

Regrout the joints, using a grout spreader.

Clean Surface (Reviving Tired Grout)

Clean down the tiled surface thoroughly using a sponge and TSP solution.

Apply Grout Reviver (Reviving Tired Grout)

When the grout is dry, apply grout reviver along the joints.

Wipe Off Excess (Reviving Tired Grout)

Check the manufacturer's guidelines to see when to wipe off the excess grout reviver. Use a damp cloth.

Scrape Old Sealant (Re-Caulking)

Scrape away the old sealant. A window scraper is ideal, or use a special sealant remover.

Apply Masking Tape (Re-Caulking)

Stick masking tape 1/8 in (4 mm) from each side of the joint. This will ensure that the sealant will have straight edges.

Apply Caulk (Re-Caulking)

Apply latex caulk along the gap, and smooth with a wetted finger. Remove tape and smooth again if necessary.

Remove Walls (Removing a Damaged Shower Cubicle)

Remove any cubicle walls or shower screens before you start, so that you have full access to the tiles.

Remove Loose Tiles (Removing a Damaged Shower Cubicle)

Use a scraper to remove loose tiles, and any tiles with decayed grout, until you expose a half-tile’s width of sound drywall.

Cut the Drywall (Removing a Damaged Shower Cubicle)

Cut a line at this height using a drywall saw. Be careful not to cut through any concealed electrical or water supplies.

Cut Drywall Adjacent to Studs (Removing a Damaged Shower Cubicle)

A drywall saw may be helpful for cutting through drywall adjacent to studs, which should not be pressure-treated.

Remove Old Hardware (Removing a Damaged Shower Cubicle)

Use the claw of a hammer to remove old hardware. Leave studs exposed for a few days, to dry. A heater may speed up this process.

Cut the Board (Replacing a Shower Cubicle)

Cut a piece of cement-based, water-resistant board to size and screw it onto the studs.

Seal the Edges (Replacing a Shower Cubicle)

Seal around the edges of the board with latex caulk using a caulk gun.

Apply Fiberglass Tape (Replacing a Shower Cubicle)

Apply fiberglass tape to the joint between the new and old boards using tile adhesive.

Apply Adhesive and Place Tiles (Replacing a Shower Cubicle)

Apply tile adhesive and tile over the area to match the existing tiles, then regrout. Reapply latex caulk to tray and corner joints.

Preventing Water Damage

Check all areas regularly for signs of damage or dampness. If you find any problems, tackle them immediately, using the techniques shown above.