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Old 10-01-2010, 02:20 PM   #1
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Suggestions wanted for options on a new floor

I have a tile-floor house and that tile has got to go. The grout from one end of the house to the other is cracking in a long straight line, so I guess that obviously means I have a cracked slab underneath. Along the way, a few tiles have already popped loose and broken also. The pieces are just laying in there freely and they click and wobble whenever I step on them. Every month or two there are more pieces of grout popping loose and another tile starting to pop loose here or there.

The bedroom has no tile, just a painted concrete floor and I can see a crack in the slab. From this crack, I can see that the slab is a slightly less than 1/8 inch higher on one side of the crack than the other. It's not enough to stub your toe on, but I imagine it's enough to wreak havoc on a number of flooring option.

I'd like to keep this cheap and DIY, although I've never done anything with regard to flooring before. I've never even set a tile!

To retile the whole 1200 house might not make sense ... and repairing the tiles along the crack line might not work either because I've never been able to find new matching tiles. (These are ten years old.)

I've looked at these floating interconnecting panels from Allure, and that might be an option, but a wood or linoleum looking surface would be my last choice.

Carpeting is out because this is remote mountain living and there's too much dust to want to carpet out here.

I've walked the aisles of Home Depot and I'm not coming up with anything. Tiling the whole house would probably be too expensive ... and I'm worried that that 1/8 rise at crack in the slab might wreak havoc with the underside of those free-floating Allure panels, although they seem like they would be the easiest to install.

I'm seriously considering uttering a popular cuss-word, followed by the word "it", and then just pulling up the tile, sanding the floor and painting the slab and calling it done ... which might look tacky, but at least it would be inexpensive, maintenance free, and there would be no issues around the crack separating or lifting any further.

Can anyone offer a more competent suggestion? The whole issue revolves around 1) relatively cheap and 2) that less that 1/8 rise in the cracked slab ... which seems to still be growing, judging from the ever-new pieces of grout that continue to pop loose every month.

I'm also open to pulling up a path of tile two or three wide and thirty feet long and learning how to repair the tiles that run over the crack, assuming I could find matching replacement tiles.

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.



Last edited by Bunkermeister; 10-01-2010 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:52 PM   #2
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pulling up the tile means scraping a lot of thinset. your situation isn't at all uncommon. as concrete settles this can happen. from the sounds of things the easiest option would be to remove the tile from the damaged area, prep and retile.

if you pulled everything up and bought a quantity of ceramic tile for .50-.75 a sqft it could become an affordable project BUT the reason tile cracks on concrete is the settling and shifting. to have a long life the tile needs to be uncoupled from the concrete. ditra xl would take minor deflection in the shifting and might work since your concrete has set a few years. problem with that stuff is cost. it's around 1.75sq/ft.

i did a quick google for sand bed tile and found this

it's one spin on uncoupling the floor they may work. the old sand bed method is wonderful, just thick


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Old 10-01-2010, 07:21 PM   #3
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Is there a handyman service that could come out and give you an assessment and then help you get going, where you pay them to do part of it and then they let you learn with them to do the rest. I know this sounds out of the box, but I had a handyman teach me to do plaster repair and it was the best money I ever spent! ( I've done way too much repair over the years).
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