Ceramic tile in sunroom

Old 04-21-05, 03:44 AM
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Ceramic tile in sunroom

I would like to install ceramic tile in an enclosed sunroom. The room has windows, so it does not get any rain/snow. The room does not have any heat/AC so it is subject to outside temperature changes. Will I need to do any special slab preparation, use a special thinset, or use a certain grade of tile to deal with the temperature changes?
Old 04-21-05, 04:43 AM
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First to adress is the slab. If there are any cracks with height differences between the two sides of the crack, then ceramic is not a good option. That indicates verticle movement and that cracks any tile installation. The slab must be free of sealers, paint, or any other bond inhibitors which must be mechanily removed-no solvents. If you have any control joints cut into the slab, they must not be bridged with tile. You can line up any control joints as grout lines and use a soft joint in that location (AKA expansion joint to be exlplained later). Since it does not get any water except for what gets tracked in from shoes, You should be safe with any tile you choose, but some tile can get slippery when wet, so get one with a good texture. Just to be on the safe side, you may even want to choose a porcelain tile with a water absorption rating of .5% or less. Because of the extreme temp changes in the room, I would also use an unmodifed thinset mixed with that manufacturers latex additive. Not only will it give a good bond to a dense porcelain, but it will also have some flex in the horizontal plane. Thinset options would be Kerabond/Keralastic from Mapeii, Masterblend/Customflex from Custom, or Laticrete 272/333 admix from Laticrete to name a few. There must be a 1/4" gap around the perimeter of the room, left ungrouted. Expansion joints should be located no more than every 12'. If you get extreme temp variations, don't hesitate to make them even closer. An expansion joint is made by making sure there is no thinset in the grout line (keep it clean when you set your tile) and fill the groutline with a color/texture matched caulk. This will allow the expansion to occur without hinderance and done neatly, you wont notice the difference between the true grout lines and the caulk lines. Spider cracks and shrinkage cracks can be dealt with using a crack suppresion membane so long as both sides of the crack are in plane. Don't be a stranger. Come back with any other questions you have along the way.

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