When is the Right Time to Replace Caulking?

Q:  The caulk in our showers used to be white but is turning dark and I can’t get it clean.  What do you recommend?

A:  While caulk can be cleaned, it also gets old and discolors.  At that point, it’s time for fresh caulk.  If you re-caulk the bathroom yourself you’ll need a razor sharp scraper, denatured alcohol, a fresh tube of 100% silicon caulk in the color of your choice, and a caulking gun. 

The most important steps in caulking is getting rid of the old caulk by cutting and scraping it off the tile with the razor edge.  Be thorough.  Then clean the surface well with alcohol.  Allow the area to dry completely and apply the new caulk.  Give that 24 hours to cure before exposing it to water.  If it peels out of the corners in long strings you did not adequately clean the surface.