Cracked or broken ceramic floor tiles can be an eyesore in your home. While replacing the tile is the best long-term solution, a quick DIY repair using basic household items like ramen noodles and superglue can temporarily fill cracks and holes. This cheap fix allows you to renew the look of your flooring until you’re ready for a full replacement.
What You’ll Need
- Ramen noodles – Look for plain instant ramen noodles without any seasoning. The noodles will serve as your filler material.
- Superglue – Opt for superglue formulated for plastic and ceramic. This will provide the strongest bond.
- Utility knife – To cut and shape the noodles to fit in the cracks.
- Sandpaper – For smoothing down the finished repair.
- Rags – For wiping away any messes or excess glue.
Prepare the Crack
First, thoroughly clean and dry the cracked tile and surrounding area. Use a vacuum or broom to remove any dirt or debris from the crack. Then wipe the tile down with a damp rag to get rid of any remaining dust.
Let the tile fully dry before moving on. Examine the crack and use a utility knife to remove any loose pieces or protruding edges. This will allow the noodles and glue to adhere better.
Fill the Crack
Next, prepare your ramen noodles. Take a brick of uncooked noodles and use kitchen scissors or a sharp knife to cut them into smaller pieces. The noodles should be slightly wider than the crack itself.
Once you’ve cut enough filler pieces, apply a liberal amount of superglue directly into the crack. Then gently press the noodles pieces into the crack, packing them in tightly. Add more glue as needed to fully saturate the noodles.
Repeat this process until the crack is completely filled and level with the surrounding tile. Use your utility knife to trim off any excess dried noodle pieces.
Smooth and Finish
Once the glue has fully dried, use medium grit sandpaper to gently smooth down the noodles until they are flush with the rest of the tile. Try to blend the edges as seamlessly as possible.
Finally, use a damp rag to wipe away any glue residue or dust. For extra protection, apply a thin coat of superglue over the finished repair. Allow to fully dry one last time.
And that’s it! With this simple ramen noodle trick, you can camouflage cracks in ceramic flooring. Just remember, it’s only a temporary fix. But it can buy you some extra time before installing new tile.
Tips for the Best Results
- Use a glue formulated for ceramics. Avoid multipurpose or school glues.
- Make sure the tiles are completely clean and dry before repairs.
- Cut the noodles slightly wider than the crack to ensure a tight fill.
- Work in a well-ventilated area since superglues emit strong fumes.
- Wear gloves to protect your hands from irritation.
- Work slowly and let the glue fully cure between steps.
- Sand gently to avoid damaging the surrounding tile.
- Consider applying a sealant for added crack protection.
How long will the repair last?
With proper installation, ramen noodle repairs can last 6 months to 2 years. But results will vary based on the extent of damage and frequency of use. High traffic areas may wear faster.
What types of cracks work best?
Small to medium cracks and chips – under 1/4 inch wide – have the best outcome. Larger cracks are harder to fill evenly and will show imperfections.
Is this an effective way to regrout tiles?
No. While this works for small cracks between tiles, it won’t properly fill missing grout around tile edges. Grout repairs require specialized materials and techniques.
What about other types of flooring?
This DIY is specifically for ceramic, porcelain, and natural stone tiles. It won’t bond well to wood, laminate, or resilient vinyl floors. You’d need a filler made for those materials.
When to Call a Professional
If the cracks reappear quickly or span multiple tiles, the underlying floor may be sinking or uneven. In that case, a flooring specialist should inspect and address the root cause. They can also provide seamless crack repairs or full tile replacement.
For heavy damage beyond superficial cracks, don’t try makeshift repairs. Severely broken, loose, or missing tiles requireprofessional installation of new tile.
While the ramen noodle trick offers a quick cover-up, it isn’t a permanent solution. For cracked floors that get heavy use, hire a qualified tile pro for repairs that will last.
Revitalizing cracked ceramic floor tiles is possible with basic supplies you may already have at home. Just remember to thoroughly clean the cracks, tightly pack in the noodles, let the glue fully cure, and blend for the most seamless fix. This can buy you some extra time before a proper tile replacement. But for severe, recurring, or extensive damage, call on a tile installation pro rather than attempting temporary repairs.