Tiling

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Old 09-19-00, 01:35 PM
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My husband and I are going to tile my kitchen/dining/laundry room. There is linoleum down now, is there an easy way to get it up? Do you have to have some kind of back board down to lay the tile or can it just be installed over the slab?
 
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Old 09-19-00, 11:15 PM
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MTC:

Bare concrete is the best base you can have for ceramic floor tiles. The worst thing for a ceramic tile floor is flexing of the floor which cracks the grout joints. Concrete slabs don't flex.

So far as the linoleum goes, the best way to get it off is by stripping off the wear layer first, then shaving off the paper underneath, then, once the paper is too thin to insulate, using heat and a scraper to remove the adhesive from the concrete.

THE BEST tool for getting the wear layer off is a Roberts wood molding lifter available wherever flooring installation supplies are sold. It looks like a miniature crow bar, and is about 10 1/2 inches long.

THE BEST tool for cutting off the underlying paper is a 4 inch flooring razor, also sold wherever flooring installation supplies are sold. Any carpet place will tell you where flooring installation supplies are sold. Both Crain and Gundlach make good flooring razors in a variety of sizes. I like the 2 foot long ones, because they are about the right length when kneeling on the floor. Buy plenty of spare blades. Using a dull blade is better exercise, though.

THE BEST heat gun is the cheapest heat gun. You don't need an expensive heat gun to do floor stripping. Buy a cheap Black&Decker at Wal-Mart, and you'll be using the same tool as the pros use.

THE BEST scraper to use with that heat gun is a "Goldblatt 3 inch bent burn off scraper" available wherever Goldblatt concrete finishing tools are sold.

Trust me, I've replace the linoleum in about 20 bathrooms so far. Yes, I said replaced, not just covered.
 
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Old 09-19-00, 11:25 PM
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MTC:

Also, don't be scared to sharpen that Goldblatt bent burn off scraper. I sharpen mine on a 1 inch belt sander. You don't want a razor edge on it, but it could be a lot sharper than the way it comes from the factory. About the sharpness of a dull kitchen knife is good.

Also, you could also spread floor leveler over top of the linoleum you have now, then lay ceramic tiles over that. The advantage is that you don't have to remove the linoleum. The disadvantage is that if the glue holding down the linoleum doesn't last as long as you're hoping the tiles will last, then when your linoleum glue throws in the towel it takes the tile floor with it. The second advantage is that if you ever get sick of the tile floor, you can tear it out by ripping out the linoleum it's glued down to. That would be a lot easier than chiseling the thin set off the slab.

 
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