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I have this part of caulk missing near the corner of my bathroom floor. Should I just patch this section with new caulk or would I need to scrape the old caulk and reapply caulk along the entire edge?

And by the way, what is the proper lingo for this "edge." Is it called a "joint"? Thanks!

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  • It looks old and dried out, I'd scrape it out and put new stuff down, it's an easy job. – Ron Beyer Jul 22 at 2:59
  • @RonBeyer I'm totally new to home improvement. I don't want to mess up and not seal it well then risk water damage to the foundation of the house. I've watched a few youtube videos. Where else can I learn how to caulk properly? Thanks – spacenet Jul 22 at 3:06
  • Are you sure that is caulk and not grout? Is this in the shower pan or outside of the shower? There are tile caulks that you can get that are mold and mildew resistant – J Henzel Jul 22 at 5:35
  • How to learn to caulk properly: 1) watch a couple of videos to learn what to do. 2) apply what you've learned and do a shoddy job. 3) apply your learning again and do a bit better job. 4) repeat steps 2 & 3 until you can do a nice, professional job. Seriously, it takes some practice and patience to do a nice job. The good news is that caulk is cheap so you can practice and that it's not difficult to scrape up if you don't like the job you did and want to try again. As a bonus, it's possibly to have an ugly looking but thoroughly sealed and functional caulk job – FreeMan Jul 22 at 12:01
  • @JHenzel this is inside the shower pan. What's grout? Why do I need grout not caulk? – spacenet Jul 22 at 14:40
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It all needs to be scraped out, the surface needs to be scrubbed clean and then rinsed and left to dry completely.

Then (and only then) should new caulk be applied.

As for learning, internet videos have many examples of how to do it properly but there is some skill gained by experience. Each application method (squeeze tube vs. caulking gun) also involves slightly different skill-set and both have advantages and disadvantages.

I recommend that you use silicone (for durability, adhesion, and water-resistance); that you use a squeeze tube applicator (easier control for novice); and that you have mineral spirits handy in a small bucket along with several sacrificial rags. Use a finger dipped in mineral spirits to carefully smooth the caulk after application, and use the rags to clean any "oops" and to clean up any smeared caulk that got anywhere you didn't want it to be.

Even if it's not perfect in the end, it will look better and be more water-protective than the old crap that is there now... and you will learn a bit and your next caulk job will be easier.

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  • And I posted my "how to" comment before reading your answer. Oops... – FreeMan Jul 22 at 12:02
  • can I just patch the missing part? What's the risk in doing just that? – spacenet Jul 22 at 14:34
  • Caulk, once cured, is designed to resist other stuff sticking to it (e.g. moisture, dirt, mildew, etc.); this includes other caulk. If you try to splooge some additional caulk as a patch over just that spot you are asking for (immediate or eventual) failure and separation and leaks. – Jimmy Fix-it Jul 23 at 2:34

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