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C_J_GO 09-05-2009 01:23 PM

How Do I Remove Mortar From Porcelain Tiles?
I have a bathroom in the basement that I tiled and when reading the bucket of mortar, it said to either wipe the excess mortar off, but can be taken off with mineral spirits later....well its later and the mineral spirits is only helping a little. I am scraping the chunks off with a windshield ice scraper and then wiping th tile down with mineral spirits and its not quite working out the best. I am just using an old towel to wipe the tiles off...should I use something like a dish scratch pad? I hasve just been putting the mineral spirits on the towel and then wiping them as I have not grouted yet. Anyone have any advice on how to get this mortar excess off the tiles so I can grout?

flooringdoctor 09-05-2009 03:37 PM

CJ, there are different acid type products that can be used to help get the mortar (thin set or grout) off the tile. Usually this is done by a professional so I would recommend you seek some assistance or do as much research as you can before attempting this yourself. It's not that it's very difficult, it's the fact that the acid can destroy metal permanently and some other issues such as getting the acid on yourself or in your eyes. As an installer for many years we've always used muriatic acid sometimes diluted, sometimes not however I've seen some real problems with people using it that don't know what they're doing so please be careful if you tackle this yourself.

Bud Cline 09-05-2009 03:53 PM


If the mortar came from a bucket then it isn't really mortar, it is mastic. None of the acids will have any effect what-soever on the mastic. Flooringdoctor should know that.:)

Use a razor-blade scraper and a white scrubbee pad with the mineral spirits, it will come off fairly easy.

Don't even think about using any acid.:)

PS: Real mortar doesn't come pre-mixed in a bucket.

flooringdoctor 09-05-2009 03:58 PM

Bud, I stand corrected, didn't catch that. Bud is correct, if this is some premixed mortar then stand down on my acid suggestion. Bud's suggestion should do the trick or contact the manufacturer if you want to be safe about it. Sorry about that, not used to using "mortar" from a bucket unless it's a bucket I filled with thin set mix and water and blended myself.....

C_J_GO 09-05-2009 04:24 PM

THanks for the responses...I used a scrubber pad with somne mineral spirits and it turned out quite well. Again, thanks for the advice.

Bud Cline 09-06-2009 10:42 AM


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