Q: I have three problems.
1. I have some bad caulking between my tub and tile. It keeps growing some pretty awful mold on it. A bit of bleach doesn’t always work. How can I make it mold proof? The gap between tub and tile is quite small.
2. My son drinks a soft drink that leaves a light stain on the floor or countertop. How can I keep it off those surfaces?
3. What is meant by a high spore count?
1. You could take the caulking out, clean it out, and put in a mold-proof caulking. But I don’t think any caulking is mold proof. Instead, fill the gap with an unsanded grout. It will fill that gap nicely and smoothly. After it sets, seal it with a tile or masonry sealer.
2. What man or boy has never spilled a drink, so there is no use lecturing about that. Rub the stain with Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I have recommended this for many purposes and have not gotten a complaint that it didn’t work.
3. A high spore count means that many, many mold spores are in the air, waiting to land on a damp surface and grow into blobs and stain black, white and other colors. When they land, they will feed off whatever they land on.
Q: What kind of drill would I need to go through a granite countertop? I would like to put some dispensers for ketchup, duck sauce and mustard and have always wanted a nice setup for our parties.
Don’t forget the Chinese mustard and the Japanese wasabi, the green dragon’s fire. I suggest you leave the granite alone and put the condiment containers on the top, where spills can be easily cleaned. If you really want to drill holes, buy a bit specifically for masonry and stone. It will take a long time to do this, and you do not want to use an impact drill. If it takes too long, have a pro do it.
Q: We have a concrete front porch and steps on our 1930 house. There are some cracks that we’ve repaired repeatedly. Is it possible to lay stone such as granite over the concrete on the floor of the porch and step treads?
Yes, you can lay the granite tiles or similar stone material such as bluestone on treads and porch floor. Install them with thin-set mortar. One important caveat: Make sure all risers are of equal height. Uneven risers are a definite hazard and can cause falls going both up and down.