Caulk

Published on January 22nd, 2013 | by Henri

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Bathtub Caulk

Q.  What is the best brand of caulk to use around a shower or bathtub?

A.    There are two issues to consider. A bathroom caulk that is mildew-resistant and one that I consider the best. Here is a repeat of an answer to another reader last April:

Some time ago, I tried  DAP KWIK SEAL PLUS Premium Kitchen & Bath Adhesive Caulk with Microban because of its claim that it is mildew-proof. I caulked half of our tub with it and the other half with Sikaflex-1a polyurethane caulking/sealant, which I have used for over 50 years in all types of construction applications.

I decided to give DAP’s product a try because some of my readers had reported that Sikaflex-1a had turned pink after a while, or simply did not remain as white as when first applied, which does happen if Sikaflex-1a is not allowed to air-cure without being repeatedly wet for a week (hard to do if your tub or shower is the only one in the house).

Although the DAP caulk remained sparkling white and did not mildew, I found out that it began to peel off the wall in about a year, typical of siliconized products, whereas Sikaflex-1a was still firmly stuck to both the tub and the wall. Sikaflex-1a tubes sell for around $5 in A.H. Harris stores (www.ahharris.com.) found throughout the Northeast. You can also buy it from DHC Supplies, www.dhcsupplies.com. Home Depot stores do not carry Sikaflex-1a, but Sika Construction Sealant, which looks quite the same to me.

Sikaflex-1a has not mildewed in my experience, but that does not mean that it won’t under different conditions. Which one to use is a personal choice. For me, after the “test”, the choice is Sikaflex-1a every time.

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