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Old 02-27-2013, 09:53 AM   #1
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Hello all. currently on a basement remodeling project at home. have finished the demo and sealing the foundation walls with drylok. I've decided to take on the task of tiling myself. I've removed the old linoleum tiles that were on the floor and the concrete below it is in good shape. There is still some glue residue from the old tiles, but the concrete is pretty level (there's a pitch flowing towards the corner of the basement where the sump pump is).

The question is, do i really need to use a self leveling concrete before tiling or is the thin set enough?

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Old 02-27-2013, 11:48 AM   #2
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


George,

Tell us more about the tiles, (not linoleum) you removed, the glue mainly. Any cracks in the slab? Basement floors. especially older ones, can be a challenge to tile and make it look right. If you're tiling an area that has a floor drain it's just too un flat. Notice I said flat. Level isn't as important as flat cuz tiles don't bend much.

Get a 8-10 ft. straight edge or laser level and measure how much it's off, note the worst spot. Let us know.

Jaz

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Old 02-27-2013, 12:14 PM   #3
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Thank you Jazman. Well they were 12x12 inch tiles that were relatively loose. There's not much glue on the floor so not too sure what type they used but it seemed to be water soluble. We had some water in the basement last year during a hurricane Irene my old sump pump gave out. when everything dried up many of the floor tiles came loose. The floor tiles are gone, but i'll take a pic of what i'm working with when i get off work. I still have to frame up some walls but i'll show you what i'm working with. prob always best to have a visual aid, right?
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:48 PM   #4
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


As someone said, "a picture is worth........."

The old tiles may have been peel & stick? Or regular but the glue was white that dried almost clear. I'm thinking of any residue left on the floor to hinder a good bond.

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Old 02-27-2013, 12:51 PM   #5
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


You're right, the residue left behind is whitish in color. Do you know of any product out on the market that i can use to easily remove and prep the area before applying the thin set?
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:20 PM   #6
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Here are a few pictures of the floor
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:19 PM   #7
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Is that mold I see? I think a moisture test would be in order to start.

There's a bunch of removers that claim to be safe and can be neutralized once the residue is removed. Some are soy others citrus based. Use them if you research and feel comfy. Also can cost a pretty penny, $$$.

In general the industry says do not use any chemicals to remove adhesive since they'll drive the adhesive deeper and will leave a bond breaking residue. There's thinset that can go over a transparent film of cutback, but yours is not cutback. There's no easy way to remove it except for grinding. Shoot-blasting works great, but might cost you a small fortune.

I think cutting the glue off with a razor cutter, then using a premium modified thinset should work. Choose a product, then make a call for specific advice.

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Old 02-27-2013, 08:56 PM   #8
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


I didn't find any mold but there was a mildewy smell when I lifted the tiles (might have been some mildew growth after I had a small amount of water after hurricane Irene). The ground underneath however was dry as a bone. I was getting some moisture coming through a small crack in the foundation wall but I've since plugged it and sealed the walls with 4 coats of drylok.
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:20 PM   #9
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Well, the Drylok might keep the water from flowing in, but it's still there. Wouldn't hurt to do some testing.

You said the ground underneath was dry, what ground is that?

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Old 02-27-2013, 09:23 PM   #10
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


Meant the concrete floor under the tiles was dry. Please elaborate on the moisture test, is that a professional service or something I can do myself?
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:29 PM   #11
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To Use self leveling concrete or not to use, that tis the question


I have a dehumidifier in the basement as well

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