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cassandra 03-29-2009 01:08 PM

Mud bed half up, will concrete fill in the space?
Apologies in advance if this solution already exists on the board somewhere. I couldn't find anything in my searches.

Facts: House was built in '77. Entryway is about 5.5 x 13 ft.

When we moved in, the entryway floor was Saltillo tile painted white. We decided that removing the paint was too tedious, and we did not like the color of the tile anyway. We want to put in a wood floor laminate.

We pulled up the tile (using a drill hammer) and proceeded to remove half of the mud bed. The mess it caused made us wonder if the entire mud bed needed removing- could we fill the half removed with concrete, then level it out instead? Then lay in the wood lam.

The slab in the entryway was obviously recessed to create the mud bed, so the depth of the area needing the most fill-in is about 1.5-2.5" (not level).

This is the entryway floor now- you can see the edge of the mud, about half of it has been taken up.

The entryway is flanked by carpet on both sides. This shot is the edge of the carpet showing the depth of the slab- about 1.5".

The mud bed is about 2-2.5" higher than the slab here.

The questions are:
  • Is concrete the right solution?
  • Will the concrete bond to the mud or cause prolems?
  • Are there any agents that should be added to the concrete to help it bond?
  • Would an expansion joint help avoid any problems between the two materials?
  • Is there anything we have not thought of that might help us in this project?
Thank you!
(houston, tx)

Bob Mariani 03-29-2009 06:31 PM

Use a bonding agent and you should be fine. use Ditra to provide isolation between the tile and the concrete which will move independent of the tile. You only need an expansion joint if one exists now and then you need to transfer this up through the concrete and the tile. Not likely you will have this situation.

ccarlisle 03-30-2009 07:14 AM

At around 2" thick, you're just at the limits of what a "self-levelling cement" is recommended to reach, otherwise we'd say use that. But here where you may be over 2", regular cement is fine, as Bob says.

You said you are putting laminate on top of the slab? No need for an uncoupling membrane like Ditra...use a foam membrane underneath and follow the manufacturers requirements for that.

Let the new cement dry well before covering it up, I'd like a few days or more, not just overnight.

Good luck.

Bob Mariani 03-30-2009 09:57 AM

right no Ditra.. did not see the laminate part. But use a sealer on the concrete to minimize moisture issues with the laminate. The padding used with the laminate will also stop moisture, but the second level of protection will not hurt.

R&D Tile 03-30-2009 11:15 AM

As stated above, seeing tile isn't going to be used, just get some Quickrete sand mix, paint the floor with a bonding agent or use modified thinset or a portland slurry mix, paint it on the floor and place the sand mix over it while it's still wet.

SLC is too expensive for this and I wouldn't use a concrete mix for under 2".

Bud Cline 03-30-2009 05:49 PM


cassandra 03-31-2009 08:25 AM

Thanks everyone- very helpful!

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