Tile raising up off floor

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Old 06-15-08, 10:03 PM
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Question Tile raising up off floor

Hello,

Thanks for your time. Last week a loud cracking noise started ringing through our kitchen and a few minutes later the ceramic tile starting cracking and raising up off the floor. The tile is on the ground floor and was installed by the owner while building the house in 2003 (he installed it himself). I am trying to find out why this happened so I can see if it was improper tiling technique. The interesting thing is when I pulled up all the loose tiles, the underlying thinset was 3 different colors in the area under the raised tiles. I have included pictures. I also included a picture of the tile grouted all the way to the hardwood floor at the entrance to the next room. But it does not go all the way to the wall when I removed the baseboard (close, but not touching). Any suggestions as to why this occurred? Does the entire floor need replacing (500 sq ft)? A slab guy came out and inspected the slab. He said it was intact. Thanks in advance. Click pictures for larger images:











 
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Old 06-16-08, 02:52 PM
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Are there any movement joints in the tile layout?

Does the room get direct sunlight?

Did the slab cure for at least 28 days before the tile was installed?

What kinda thinset was used?
 
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Old 06-16-08, 03:37 PM
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1. 3 different colors of thinset? Neopolitan?

2. Lack of expansion gaps at perimeter and between hardwood?

3. Contaminated substrate?
 
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Old 06-16-08, 04:24 PM
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Looks like mastic.......and it's hard to tell, but looks like the wrong size trowel was used......
 
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Old 06-16-08, 04:36 PM
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Thanks for the responses, guys!

I don't know if there are movement joints. How would I know this? Would it be very obvious? Where would I look?

No direct sunlight. No idea about the slab curing. As for the thinset... again I don't know, but I would guess it came from Lowe's and it was the cheapest they have. That seems to be the guy's overriding law of building. Again, the thinset is 3 different shades... Does that mean he used 3 different kinds, or did they dry differently?

Would the lack of expansion gap at the hardwood junction cause this? It is only about 6 feet of the overall perimeter. The rest is wall which appears to have some gap (although very small).

What is mastic? Instead of thinset?

I am trying to prove that improper technique caused the buckling so that I can be reimbursed. Do you think it is even possible to say that with the given info, or do I just need to eat it and move on.

Thanks again.

-T
 
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Old 06-16-08, 05:46 PM
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Most definitely the wrong size trowel was used. Is there any mastic or whatever they used to install the tile on the bottom of the tiles? One photo it looked like tile had not made contact with the the contact material.

Another issue could be that there were high and low spots in the concrete substrate. Any movement in tile will result in cracked grout and tile.
 
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Old 06-17-08, 07:07 AM
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For some strange reason I cant see the pictures.

I don't know if there are movement joints. How would I know this? Would it be very obvious? Where would I look?
Yeah, you should be able to see caulked instead of grouted joints where required. Even the matching caulk will be visible if you look for it. You should definetly have movement joints.

Some good info for you to read regarding movement joints.

http://www.tileusa.com/movementjoint_faq.htm
 
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Old 06-17-08, 10:19 AM
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Thanks for the help. That website is very good... just what I needed. In answer to twelvepole, 99% of the thinset is still on the slab. The tile bottoms are pretty clean.

I appreciate everyone's input.
 
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Old 06-17-08, 11:22 AM
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In answer to twelvepole, 99% of the thinset is still on the slab. The tile bottoms are pretty clean.
Not unusual to see this. Something has to let go, and that was the weakest bond.
 
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