crack in new tile

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Old 12-16-06, 06:10 PM
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crack in new tile

I just finished putting down 12" ceramic tiles over a concrete slab in our front door entry way. All was holding up well and then I noticed one tile next to the front door is cracked from front to back. I read in other posts ( a little late) about a membrane you can put down over concrete slabs before putting down tile.Can I remove the one damaged tile and use a piece of this membrane under the replacement tile or would this have to be put down under all the tiles?
 
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Old 12-16-06, 06:47 PM
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If your slab is level you shouldn't need anything. Most likely there was a void under the tile with no thinset. And yes, you can remove that one tile carefully and jsut replace it. Make sure you have good thinset covereage.
 
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Old 12-16-06, 08:45 PM
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If the slab under the tile cracks, the crack will telegraph through the tile also if the slab is moving. If the slab was cracked and the crack was not treated with a slip sheet, the crack will most likely telegraph through and the tile will also crack. The crack will continue from tile to tile the length of the crack so replacing the cracked tile is likely an exercise in futility. A slip sheet allows the slab to move under the tile to a certain extent without cracking the tile as well, provided the slab isn't actually falling apart, in which case tile was not an option to begin with. Slip sheets are accomplished a few ways. One is the ditra membrane system which I have no real experience with but others on this forum have and will likely chime in. Another is a thickish vinyl membrane that looks a lot like shower pan liner and is used a couple of ways. I've done entire entry ways with it as a precaution. It is also used in strips where it is applied to existing cracks before tile installation. A third slip sheet comes as a fairly thick liquid almost like a past that is troweled over the surface to be tiled, allowed to dry, and tile is applied to it. The brand of this that I am familiar with is called Red Guard, but there are others out there.
 
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Old 12-17-06, 04:53 AM
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Thanks for all the replies. The slab is only 2 years old. I'm putting down laminate over the slab in the adjoining room and I found a long crack I had to fill in. I wonder if I should wait a while and see if any more tiles crack before replacing the bad one. The area I tiled is only 4 x 5 feet but the tile will continue into an adjoining room that has vinyl flooring now. I will use a liner in that room now that I know.
 
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Old 12-17-06, 05:10 AM
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You do not use a liner or slip sheet for cracks, membranes are not slip sheets, they are crack isolation membranes made for this, like Ditra and others.

A slip sheet is used under a full mud bed to isolate it from the substrate below, ike roofing felt, do not use this or any liner under thinset with tile.

Use a good modified thinset and full coverage to reset the tile, if any of the others are cracked or loose, then remove them all and inspect the slab, wrong thinset and or coverage could have caused this also, tap on the rest of the tile, do any sound hollow?
 
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Old 12-17-06, 08:32 AM
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The label on a bucket of Red Guard bills it as a waterproofing and anti fracture membrane. Go here and read the whole thing, particularly the last post. It is also dealing with this subject. It's an old discussion, but should help. http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=11399&page=1
The installers in my neck of the woods call this process slip sheeting. Verbiage may vary from area to area in the country, but the idea is to isolate the crack so it won't telegraph through the tile. It is common for tiles to crack due to a lack on thin set under them leaving voids and is something you should check for. These cracks are caused by foot traffic applying pressure to a surface with a void under it. Tile doesn't like to bend or flex and will crack under those circumstances. The area you describe doesn't sound like a real traffic area, but I may be misreading. In any case, I wouldn't do anything with the cracked tile just yet unless it does turn out to be a bonding issue. If the problem is in the slab, the crack will continue across the tiles, following the crack in the slab.
 
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Old 12-18-06, 02:51 PM
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I used a wooden handle of a rubber mallet to pound on the tiles and they all sound solid,nothing sounded hollow. I guess I'll wait a bit and see how the rest do. The one that cracked is toward the door hinge side and gets very little traffic on it. The brand was Basic-made in Italy.
 
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Old 12-18-06, 03:50 PM
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Remove the tile and tell us what you see. Was the thinset well bonded to the slab? Was the thinset well bonded to the tile? Did you have over 80% coverage (closer to 100% is better)? Is the slab cracked where you removed the tile?
 
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Old 03-08-08, 08:23 AM
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It took a while to get back-
I have removed the cracked tile and in process of removing old thinset. The concrete slab is cracked a perfect copy of the tile crack and my thinset coverage had no voids, in fact it was difficult to remove the damaged tile.
So what should I do with the crack in my slab?
 
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Old 03-08-08, 08:38 AM
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No one has mentioned there are thinsets that are supposed to allow some minimal lateral movement between the substarte and the tile, up to 1/8". Whether or not they work I have no idea, but I hope so 'cause I've been using them.

Isolation membranes are not "slip sheets". You would want to look at removing this entry tile and using an isolation membrane if you intend a continuation of the tile at a later date.
 
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Old 03-08-08, 09:05 AM
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Does the crack in the slab appear to continue under other tiles as well. If so, you may want to deal with that now.

No one has mentioned there are thinsets that are supposed to allow some minimal lateral movement between the substarte and the tile, up to 1/8". Whether or not they work I have no idea, but I hope so 'cause I've been using them.
Ive been using them from time to time as well. It should work.
 
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Old 03-08-08, 09:15 AM
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I can't tell if crack goes farther but in any event the rest of the tiles are OK and not having any trouble with them, and I left them there for a while before this repair.(over a year to let things settle)
 
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Old 03-08-08, 09:39 AM
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Sounds like you'll be ok. Use a crack isolation mortar as Bud suggested. These mortars are on the pricey side. If other tiles crack in the future you'll know what to do.
 
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Old 03-08-08, 09:46 AM
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Any brand names or suggestions where I can buy some?
Would Lowes or Home Depot sell it?
 
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Old 03-08-08, 10:07 AM
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I have used this one, but there are others. The stuff is a fortune.

http://www.tecspecialty.com/content/...?product_id=75

HD carries Custom Building Products thinsets. I'm not sure what there crack isolation mortar is, I havent used it, but Im sure they have one.
 
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Old 03-08-08, 10:37 AM
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Custom Building products offers MegaLite and MegaFlex at around $30 per 50# bag. They are available by Special Order at Home Depots. There are many others by other makers but I offer this assuming you have access to Home depot.
 
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Old 03-08-08, 10:48 AM
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Thanks for the help!
 
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