Caulk Tube Spout Saver
Don’t discard half-used caulk tubes, slit the nozzle on both sides and pry out the plug. Find out how with this tip.
What to do with half-used caulk tubes
Don’t discard half-used caulk tubes just because the nozzle is plugged up with dried caulk. Slit the nozzle on both sides and pry out the plug. Then tape the nozzle halves back together with electrical tape and get back to work. Thanks to Larry Stewart for this salvager’s delight.
Clean the Spout With a ScrewIt seems you can never seal the cut tip of a partial tube well enough. A plug usually forms in the tip. Try using a large screw with aggressive threads to remove the plug. This tip works best with silicone products.
Tape Before CaulkingApply painter's tape to control your caulk lines. Apply the caulk, smooth the joint with your finger and immediately remove the tape.
Choose the Right Caulk for the JobThe selection in the caulk aisle at home centers is mind-boggling, but actually choosing the right one is pretty simple. Most of the caulk on store shelves is basically one of four types: elastomeric, polyurethane, latex or silicone. Here's how to choose the right caulk:
- Siding, windows and doors: Polyurethane is best. It's paintable. It doesn't shrink. It stays flexible. It adheres better than silicone, and it doesn't attract dust and dirt the way silicone does. Roofing: Use an elastomeric or rubberized product. This stuff won't dry out in extreme conditions, and it sticks to everything.
- Interior trim: Use latex if you're sealing gaps and nail holes in trim that's going to be painted. It cleans up easily and dries fast. It's also easy to tool—and cheap.
- Kitchen and bath: This is where silicone products shine. Silicone tools well. It can be purchased with antimicrobial additives, and can be easily removed and replaced when it gets grungy.