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budget consciou 03-15-2009 08:22 PM

Replacing kitchen countertop tile
Hello everyone. Hope I'm posting in the correct place.

I've got a kitchen countertop that consists of 4 1/4" white ceramic tile. I checked at Lowes and Home Depot, and solid surface would run me around a grand (if I choose one of the undesirable patterns :eek:). Granite would only be about 20% more. Then, I saw the granite tiles. I'm sure I can do a fine job laying tile.
So, the question is; how do I get from the existing white tiles to a surface I could lay the granite on? Smash out the tile with a hammer, of course. But, then what? Can I get what's left to a state where I can lay the granite, or do I need to remove it all and put new plywood and cementitious backer? Is one easier than the other? How smoothe would I have to get it? Would I need to treat it in any way prior to laying the granite?


Bob Mariani 03-16-2009 06:23 AM

You should be able to remove all the tiles and the thinset that set them by using a hammer drill, set on hammer and a 3" flat chisel. (rent one). Then set the granite tiles with thinset and your are done. Caution! prices for quickly sold items are cheaper at box stores, items like counter materials and granite will be higher than anywhere else.

ponch37300 03-16-2009 10:34 PM

What is your base under your tiles now? Is it going to be good for granite tiles? It might be cheaper and easier to rip everything out depending on what's there now and start over with fresh plywood and a backer and then tile.

Ron6519 03-17-2009 07:09 AM

Tear it all out and start fresh as ponch said. If it was put on correctly, you'll never get it off without destroying the substrate.

budget consciou 03-17-2009 08:27 AM

Thanks for the replies. I can only see plywood underneath, but it's nearly 2" thick. So, I'm assuming there's a layer of cement board in there too.
Trying to scrape down the thinset sounds like it could be a real chore.

ponch37300 03-17-2009 09:24 AM

Sounds like you have 2 layers of plywood and then a backer board if it's 2" thick.

I am going to be tiling my kitchen counters soon and have done a lot of reading on this. I have decided to go with 2 layers of exterior rated plywood and then use ditra.

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