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BarrieD 03-22-2013 11:37 AM

Can Ditra be used here?
I want to lay 12x12 porcelain tile in my utility room that has a concrete slab floor. The concrete is 3/4 inch lower than the top of the backerboard under the matching tile in the adjoining kitchen. The kitchen tile is on 3/4 inch plywood, thin set, hardie board, thin set and then tile. I need to go up 3/4 inch before I lay thin set and tile. If I lay Ditra on the concrete, can I use a thicker bed of thin set to set the tile to match the height in the kitchen? I imagine the thin set would have to be around 5/8 - 3/4 inch thick. Is this all wrong? Can I use two layers of Ditra with thin set between them? Should I use SLC or pour mud bed? Should I abandon the DIY approach and call in a professional? All suggestions are greatly appreciated. Have a good day.

You can see my other post titled "Continuing tile from kitchen into utility room" for more info if needed or ask a question. Thanks

JazMan 03-22-2013 09:43 PM

Hi Barrie,

You can not build the floor up with thinset. Example; when you spread thinset with a 1/2" trowel, the resulting thickness once the tiles are set will be about 1/8".

Regular Ditra is 1/8" installed, total. Ditra XL is 5/16" total. Installing two layers of Ditra XL will get you close, but that would be very expensive and makes no sense to me.:no: You forget to say how big the room is.

SLC is very expensive too. A $30 bag will yield about 1/8" for 50 sq. ft.

Your best bet is to hire a real tile setter that knows mud work. He can bond 3/4" of deck mud to the concrete and you'll be all set for tiles.


BarrieD 03-23-2013 12:12 AM

Thanks Jaz for the quick reply.

The utility room is 14'x5.5' or 77 square feet. So about 1.5 bags to cover the area once at 1/8" thick. I guess I would need 6 times that much to get 3/4". Can that big of an area be done by a DIYer with either slc or deck mud? What do you think it may cost to have a pro do the mud? Access is easy through the garage. By the way, what is deck mud?

Thanks a lot. I've learned many new skills since our tornado experience but maybe some things would be better left to the pros.

JazMan 03-23-2013 10:09 AM

It will take about 9 - 50# bags if the floor is perfectly level. Your floor may not be.

It's possible that a DIY'r can do both methods, the SLC should be easier. You asked; "what is deck mud?" I recommend that if you don't know what a torque convertor is, you don't overhaul your transmission. :yes:

How much will a tile setter charge to install mud? Again you left out the info necessary, where the heck are you? :eek: I know a guy in Moldova that will do it for $15, but I would want a bit more. You'll need to find someone willing to do a small job like that. It could be a minimum charge like $200 or so, or at least double that.


BarrieD 03-23-2013 06:52 PM

Hey Jaz,

Sorry I didn't think to include my location. We're not in Moldova but very close. We're in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I really appreciate your straight forwardness in your advice. Many times people make something sound a lot easier than it really is and I hate to get into something and then wish I had gotten a professional. I've read a lot of your other replies in other people's threads and being new here (this is my 2nd thread about the same issue) I really appreciate the way you tell people how to do a job right the first time and what they can expect if they don't. That being said, I didn't know what a metal brake was before I started doing my siding after the tornado and builders in the area have said ours is a better job than our neighbors who had a professional do his. I couldn't make any money at this however because it took me 5 times longer than it should have. Oh well, if I ever do another siding job maybe I'll be faster. Thanks again for your help, maybe I can return the favor someday. :)

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