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reverse (from below?) stains on yet be grouted and sealed limestone tile

reverse (from below?) stains on yet be grouted and sealed limestone tile

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  #1  
Old 10-19-12, 07:40 PM
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reverse (from below?) stains on yet be grouted and sealed limestone tile

Hope someone can help. I'm a newbie but my handyman and I took a little longer than expected to laydown some limestone 18x18 tile on my covered patio. We have yet to grout, but as we finished and went to clean off some tenacious thinset in the joint lines, I had to water it down significantly to get it off. I ended up having to really hose down the tile. It all seemed ok until it dried and these reverse stains appeared.


Some of the tiles did not get even thinset as evidenced by the lighter spots around the corners. I'm not sure how these stains appeared because there was limited exposure only to water while cleaning. It seems like it got stained from below in areas where thinset is not contacting the tile.


Is there a way to remedy this? Desparate for an idea.


thanks in advance
 
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  #2  
Old 10-20-12, 03:26 AM
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More of the tile guys will chime in here later, so stay tuned. It appears the stains you are seeing are from dollops of thinset?? How was the thinset laid on the base? Was it troweled on? If these are dollop stains, and not manufacturing drying spacer stains, I would say the install will fail anyway. Fill us in on the method of thinsetting the tiles.
 
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Old 10-20-12, 05:00 AM
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I've never set limestone tile but I've been researching tile permeability and I've learned that some limestone tile is very porous and susceptible to water absorption and stains. What you are seeing might be thinset moisture permeating through the tile.

I also think that limestone tile requires sealing, but one of the tile guys can probably better answer that. I am curious how the thinset was applied.

I wonder what would happen if you tried to dry one of the tiles with a hair dryer?
 
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Old 10-20-12, 12:49 PM
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The consistant pattern of the blotching has me curious. To me it is water/moisture that will need to release from the stone. Limestone if pourous and will absorb water.

Run a couple of fans over them for a while to see if you can evaporate some of the water. Take Waynes advice and hit one with a hair dryer and see if that changes things. Most likely, you will need to wait a while for things to dry out. Do not grout until the moisture has been taken care of.

Once you dry them out, be sure to seal them with a good quality sealer. Your local tile supply store will recommend what is best for your situation.
 
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Old 10-20-12, 05:53 PM
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It was trowled on th
en additional thinset was added to some corners for leveling purposes. The lighter shade is more of natural color. It does seem like moisture discoloration, but its been more than a week in Arizona (90's).

Additionally, the darker areas of concern do have a hollow sound when you tap over them. I'm sure they have thinset on the slab but because of the corners being buttered there appears to be some non contact ares (sorry don't know the technical term).

It occurred to me that other than the asthetics, this aspect may lead to tile cracking. Is there a way for me to remedy that or will grout get underneath and fill in? I've seen specific [porcelin] tile adhesive repair for this situation but not sure if it will work, with limestone specifically and pre grout?
 
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Old 10-20-12, 07:11 PM
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THe grout will not solve the problem. If you have tiles that are not fully adhered to the substrate the only way I know how to fix that is by tearing them out (it pains me to say that). It sounds like the water you used to clean the grout joints of thinset migrated to voids under the tiles and was absorbed by the tile. If that is the case it will probably slowly dry out but the problem with lack of contact would remain.

Did you beat the tiles into the thinset?
 
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Old 10-21-12, 08:46 AM
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You may get lucky, the hollow sound may be there because the thinset hasn't completely hardened yet. Even though its been a week, you did expose the installation to an excessive amount of water. I can see the powerwasher in the photo.

If they are hollow and the centers of the tiles did not make contact with the thinset, you may or may not have an ongoing issue. Depending on how brittle the stone in your tile is will determine the extent of cracking you may experience down the road. I would purchase a few extra cases of tile to have on hand should cracking occur. Don't rely on being able to purchase some more tile a year from now when you need to fix a couple of cracked tiles. Tile manufactures discontinue lines all the time and you will be hardpressed to find anything that matches what you already have installed.
 
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