Below are some useful steps when using backer rod. Before you start, you need to gather first the following materials: water, detergent, putty knife, caulking gun, cloths, caulk remover, utility knife, spoon, elastomeric caulk, and backer rod.
Make sure that you clean the surfaces where you want to place the caulking material. You can make use of a cloth and a detergent in order to take off the oil, grease and dirt. This is to ensure that the caulk will adhere to an unsoiled joint.
Using the caulk remover, remove old sealants if there are any. Apply the caulk remover immediately to the sealant so that it will loosen. Get the putty knife and use it to scrape away the old caulk then finally, wipe the surface with a damp cloth.
Dry the cleaned areas. When the surface is ready for mounting, start positioning the backer rod inside the gap and then push it until it is firmly situated below the joint. If you are to fill a joint that is less than .5 inch and which requires a water resistant tool, use a closed cell rod. For gaps that are more than .5 inches wide, it is recommended that you use an open-cell rod.
Place the caulk tube inside the caulking gun. Do this by releasing the plunger which is situated at the back of the gun. Pull the trigger and wait until the plunger will hold the bottom of the caulk.
Using the utility knife, cut the caulk tube nozzle and keep the open edge facing downward. Ensure that you place the caulking nozzle at the end of the rod and to another side of the rod where it is facing the material.
Release the caulk by pulling the trigger. Move the nozzle towards you again and then run a line of caulk in between the material and the rod. Before you reach the joint length’s end, release the trigger first and then twist the caulking gun in order to cut the caulk.
Next, apply another line of caulk beside the first one. Continue the process of applying the caulk until you join the face of the joint. Fill the entire crack with the sealant by applying it to the lowest point first and then gradually build up the layers. This will ensure that there is no air trapped in between layers.
You need to overlap the surface of every side of the joint with the caulk material so that the crack will be sealed completely. Before you apply the surface finish, allow the caulk to dry first.