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Old 05-04-2010, 08:08 AM   #1
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levelling floor after tile removal


Has anyone here had the chore of leveling a floor after removing tile?

I recently finished taking up tile from the two bedrooms that our two children will be using, and in both instances most of the thinset (it looks more like cement) stayed on the concrete base rather than the tile. End result is a corrugated surface which i have to address somehow before we can lay down carpet. What's the best solution, to try and remove the thinset (not easy, I've already tried with a hammer and chisel) or level it with an appropriate compound?

If the latter, how do I go about it as far as keeping a border? I thought of putting down the tack strips for the carpet and leveling to the height of the strips, but once the foam underlay gets put in place the strips might not function adequately. I could just dam up any cracks under the baseboards along the walls and do it that way, but I'd still have to put up some kind of barrier or border under the doorway to stop the compound seeping out.

Any tips on how I should approach this problem?


Thanks in advance.......Tim

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Old 05-04-2010, 08:44 AM   #2
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levelling floor after tile removal


i would check with local tool rental and see if they have something user friendly for grinding it down. then you could skim floor with a leveling material

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Old 05-04-2010, 11:14 AM   #3
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levelling floor after tile removal


I went to HD this morning, one that has a tool rental facility, and the guys in flooring suggested a particular tool that would scrape the stuff up. So I guess that's the direction I'll take. I didn't realize there was such a tool, as i didn't fancy doing the job by hand!

Thanks for the feedback though.
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:47 PM   #4
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levelling floor after tile removal


what tool may i ask
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Old 05-04-2010, 02:35 PM   #5
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levelling floor after tile removal


Already forgotten the name. It essentially looks like a mini jackhammer, with a wide spade bit about 6" across. Apparently their carpet layers use it all the time in situations like mine where tile has been pulled up to be replaced by carpet. The guy told me a four hour rental should take care of both bedrooms.
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Old 05-04-2010, 03:45 PM   #6
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levelling floor after tile removal


A friend of mine rented a a scraping tool for the exact same reason and his was a walk behind unit. Worked wonders and fast. Can't recall the name of it.
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Old 05-04-2010, 07:10 PM   #7
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levelling floor after tile removal


That sounds interesting. I wonder where you could get one. HD certainly doesn't have them. Might have to check around.
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Old 05-04-2010, 07:40 PM   #8
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levelling floor after tile removal


I've cleaned off old thinset using a floor buffer equipped with carborundum stones..Worked well and fast.--Mike--
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:59 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo59 View Post
That sounds interesting. I wonder where you could get one. HD certainly doesn't have them. Might have to check around.
I believe he rented it at Weavers here.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:02 AM   #10
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levelling floor after tile removal


go to tool rental store not big box
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Old 05-12-2010, 02:54 PM   #11
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levelling floor after tile removal


Just a quick follow up to my original post. I ended up hiring a Hilti hammer unit from HD to do the job and it worked fine. Did each bedroom in about an hour, though the second one was easier once I figured out an appropriate technique. For anyone else who might think of using one, save your back and forgo the use of the second handle. After half an hour or so I found the most efficient and easy use of the tool was to rest it against my thigh, at the appropriate angle to the floor, and use my leg muscles to guide it forwards, rather than my back and shoulders, keeping both hands on the main handle. Different technique altogether to a conventional jackhammer, which I did for a living many moons ago via a 120lb unit on construction sites - that literally is back breaking work until you get used to it.

Also, I found by the second room that the best way to approach clearing an area, at least in my opinion, is to do a circuit of the outer edge of the room, working outwards, to clear away a foot or so of the sections near the walls, then adopt a pattern of clearing away a tile line at a time, left to right than right to left, working backwards through the room until the area is finished. Through the first room I kept up the pattern of doing the circuit from the outside in until I finished in the center of the room. Works, but you have to clear away the power cord each lap to get it out of the way. Working front to back, with the cord plugged in behind you, makes for less fidgeting and you don't have to 'turn the corner' with the unit, as you do when going round the room.

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