self leveling compounds


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Old 02-11-03, 09:47 AM
mikehall
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self leveling compounds

I am trying to install a new tile floor, but the floor is not perfectly flat. I read somewhere that self leveling compounds can be used to fix this. What are some recommendations when using these?
 
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Old 02-11-03, 03:38 PM
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Read the directions!!!

Self Levelling Compounds (SLC's) work great. Just read the instructions, recruit a helper, and go for it.
 
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Old 02-15-03, 04:26 AM
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I have been trying to level out an area around my fireplace that wasnt supported properly in the crawel space. I am using SheetRock Floor Patch / Leveler. I had a hard time getting it to mix well. It didnt really self level, I had to use a trowel to spread it around.

Now I have some high spots that I need to sand down and then will use a level to look for low spots so I can add a little to get it smooth. I am wondering if I am doing something wrong or if the area I had to work with was so big that this was about the only method I could use. I actually used an old piece of trim as a "form all the way across the room where the fireplace was (the whole thing was sank down as much as 5/8" and sloped up right about to the point where my tile will end.

Any tips on sanding this stuff? Did I use the wrong product? If so, what shoule I have used?

Thanks in Advance
 
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Old 02-16-03, 06:55 AM
TileguyTodd
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EDS JR
Remove this Gypsum based product from your floor and get a cement based floor leveling compound.
 
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Old 02-16-03, 10:09 AM
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what is wrong with the gypsum?

what brand do you recommend? Menards had another product as well, dont remember the details on it. I chose the SheetRock basically for the brand name.......I know better than to do that, so I dont really have much of an excuse.

Ed.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 05:07 AM
TileguyTodd
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Try Ardex Featheredge!!
 
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Old 02-17-03, 06:38 AM
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where can i find it and why is it better than the sheetrock?
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:06 PM
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Hey Ed.....

Gypsum products ARE NOT compatible with what you are doing.....don't use them in any form.

TRUST US!!!!!!!!!!!
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:16 PM
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Ok, basically any concrete base product will work? Will the screws for the durock go through the concrete or should I just attach it with the quickset?

I assume Menards sells the right stuff so I will go there and take a look.

Does the concrete stuff actually self level or does it have about the same consistency as the gypsum?

I hope I will be able to get the other stuff up, I guess a BFH should break it into pieces and I can sweep it up.

I read on a website about putting an expansion joint in around the walls in case the walls expand or contract they wont break the tile.......do you recommend this?

Thank you very much
Ed.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:17 PM
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One more question......

I am remodeling the whole house and will probably have another need for floor leveling.

Is the gypsum good for anything? I still have a bag and a half left over.

Ed.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:37 PM
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"BOY" have I been confused...I'm just now seeing what has happened here...we have changed drivers since this thing began.

I don't know what happened to Mike so here we go Ed....

This thread started off talking about "SELF LEVELLING COMPOUNDS". Self levelling compounds are all portland cement based products and when mixed and installed properly they are in fact "self levelling". The gypsum products (which is what "sheetrock" is) are never compatible with any of the portland-based products that are used in tiling.

Now...

In addition to the "self levelling compounds" that are on the market there are also patching products that are also portland cement based BUT THEY ARE NOT SELF LEVELLING.

Am I catching up yet? Let's take this one or two questions at a time until we both are on the same page here, which we aren't I don't think.

Oh and get the gypsum stuff out of your mind completely it is numbing your thinking.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:43 PM
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Unfortunately I jumped the gun and bought the gypsum product simply because of brand name....SheetRock. I didnt even know there were 2 different substances that could be used. The concrete based stuff I can basically mix up and pour on and it will self level and be ready for the durock right?

I assume from your last comment that the gypsum stuff isnt good for anything at all?

Ed.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 01:57 PM
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Gypsum products have their place but this ain't it. You haven't mentioned that the gypsum products are less expensive than the portland products...could this be influencing you?


The only portland based product you can mix-up and pour-on are the products that are labeled "SELF LEVELLING COMPOUND".

Here this will help you make a decision: Self Levelling Compounds cost around $30 per fifty pound bag and one fifty pound bag will deliver approximately 35 (only) square feet of levelling at about 1/8" to 1/4". Scary huh?

Your turn.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 02:06 PM
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actually price doesnt influence me near as much as what will do the job right.......i feel that it is far less expensive to do it right the first time.

from what you say it looks like I will need about a bag and a half. I have an area that is about 30 sq ft, the deepest part is about 1/2"

will i be able to run screws through that stuff or will I have to drill pilot holes or just forget the screws all together and just use the thinset to hold the durock down?

Ed.
 
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Old 02-17-03, 02:11 PM
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No need to do all that if you install the cement board first then install the self levelling compound. You wouldn't want to nail or screw or drill the compound once it was on the floor.

Besides, cement board is less expensive than SLC and this may reduce your SLC requirement and save you a few bucks.
 
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Old 02-18-03, 06:09 AM
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I think I need the SLC because there are a few hills and valleys in the floor and it slopes down about 1/2" in 2 feet. I figured I could get it close with the SLC then let the thinset take up the rest of the slack when I put the durock down.
 
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Old 02-18-03, 09:36 AM
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Ed,

Listen to me please you are going about this bass-ackwards.

Thinset doesn't make a very good filler, it has its limits believe me. Thinset will shrink too much.

1.) Install your cement board (using thinset underneath as directed).

2.) Install your SLC. It can be feathered at the edges if need be.

3.) Your "fix" is complete, install your tile.
 
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Old 02-18-03, 09:52 AM
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ok, let me see if I have this correct......this is the order I should proceed with this from where I am now.

1. remove gypsum floor leveling with hammer and chisel
2. install cement board on top of subfloor with thinset (what about the screws?)
3. level floor with cement base floor leveler
4. install tile with thinset on top of floor leveler

have I got this right yet?

Ed.
 
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Old 02-18-03, 10:08 AM
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Now we are progressing again................

1.) Yip!

2.) Don't forget the screws! Or nails will work also, galvanized roofing nails.

3.) Now this is where you're still scarin' me a little.

"Cement based floor leveller" and Self Levelling Compound are not necessarily the same thing and would have to be applied in different fashions. SLC is more expensive than a garden variety portland floor leveller. A lessor expensive portland floor leveller could be used but it would have to be "screeded" (scraped off) smooth with a straightedge. This would work also as long as you didn't exceed the limitations of the product.

SLC has limitations also. You can only do this "so-thick" at one time. Multiple applications may be required with either product.

Self Levelling Compound is Self Levelling Compound, nothing else will take it's place. What are the products you are considering here, do you have the exact names?
 
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Old 02-19-03, 06:23 AM
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I dont know any of the brand names of the concrete based SLC.....I havent gone to purchase it yet.

I dont understand why I would want to put the concrete board down first and then put the SLC down.

What I have is a fireplace at the end of a room that I want to put tile around, the room is 10' wide and the fireplace is about 7' wide centered on the end. I want to put tile on either side and then come out about 2'. The area that will be 2' out from the fireplace has some hills and valleys. If I dont fill in the valleys with something wont it cause a soft spot since the void will still be there under the concrete board? I would think a soft spot would cause the tile to crack because the floor would give there. The floor also slopes down towards the fireplace about 1/2" from the 2' out mark to the face of the fireplace. What if I filled the valleys, put the concrete board down and then raised the level of the area directly in front of the fireplace?

Thanks
Ed.
 
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Old 02-19-03, 01:23 PM
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Ed,

Cement board (CBU) is cheaper than SLC. You could use SLC only. But you can't install SLC then nail the CBU through it!!!!!!

There will be no voids under the CBU. The CBU is to be installed with a bed of thinset under it, when you nail/screw the CBU it will conform to the existing irregularities you have now. CBU offers no structural value but in my opinion it does stiffen to some degree.

Install CBU if for no other reason than to save some money on the SLC. Then cover it with SLC and feather the SLC at the point your irregular floor surface becomes plane again.

I'm missing something here I know I am.
 
 

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