Adhesive Removal From Concrete


Old 12-01-01, 02:32 PM
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Unhappy Adhesive Removal From Concrete

I just removed a ceramic tile floor that has been in for 15 years. Many of the tiles had come loose, so I decided to replace the entire floor. My problem is that the old thinset seems to be almost impossible to remove from the concrete. I tried a floor scraper with little luck, and now I'm going at it with a chisel and hammer. I'm considering trying a belt sander, but am concerned with the dust. The warning labels on thinset state that it contains silica, and is a carcenogen. Any helpful hints on how to remove the old thinset would be appreciated. At the rate I'm going, I'll still be working on it at Christmas, 2002!


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Old 12-01-01, 07:55 PM
Join Date: May 2001
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I guess it would depend on how much area you're are trying to remove. You can rent a floor grinder at your local rent all, that does a good job. It looks like a commercial floor polisher, except it has grinding stones on the bottom.(you'll have to buy the stones along with the rental) You would dampen down the floor with a little water to keep the dust down( wear a dust mask anyway) It works pretty good.
Old 12-02-01, 09:31 AM
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Thinset removal

Were these tiles installed over a subfloor? What type of underlayment? Loose tiles and grout are usually a result of movement in the floor. If tiles are not being installed on concrete, a concrete underlayment board is recommended. My concern is that if you replace the tiles, the new ones will come loose as well. If you still plan on installing on the same surface where the old tiles rested, you can float the surface with a self-leveling compound and save yourself all the work of having to grind off the old thinset mortar. You can find helpful info at

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