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Old 08-08-2018, 02:27 PM   #1
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Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower floor?


A contractor is coming to re-tile our shower floor. He will be removing the old tiles and plans on using a rapid setting tile mortar (thinset mortar) to install the new tiles. This way he can grout on the same day. Is this an appropriate type of tile mortar to use for shower floor tiles / for a shower floor? Or is an unmodified thinset mortar or another type of thinset mortar better for this application?

Last edited by mikem84; 08-08-2018 at 02:33 PM.
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:31 PM   #2
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


It might be "rapid set cement" - not sure if he meant mortar or not.
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:22 PM   #3
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


Sounds like he'll be removing just the tiles and leave the mud base. That is fine if the floor is in good shape and you simply don't like the tiles anymore.

It's rapid setting thinset mortar to set the tiles. That's the adhesive. He's trying to save you a couple hundred $$ and as you said complete the small job in one day.

** Oh, I re read your other thread on this project and see that you're not paying for the repair anyway. Still, yes, the rapid set is a good way to go. however.......

The original problem might be due to a slope that is not completely evacuating the water in the right direction. In other words the wet spots may be lower than the drain area.

Jaz
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Old 08-08-2018, 09:48 PM   #4
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


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Originally Posted by JazMan View Post
Sounds like he'll be removing just the tiles and leave the mud base. That is fine if the floor is in good shape and you simply don't like the tiles anymore.

It's rapid setting thinset mortar to set the tiles. That's the adhesive. He's trying to save you a couple hundred $$ and as you said complete the small job in one day.

** Oh, I re read your other thread on this project and see that you're not paying for the repair anyway. Still, yes, the rapid set is a good way to go. however.......

The original problem might be due to a slope that is not completely evacuating the water in the right direction. In other words the wet spots may be lower than the drain area.

Jaz
Thanks for your response. The job will take two days (apparently instead of three). He'll be removing the tiles and "skim coating" tomorrow (Thursday) and he'll be installing and grouting the new tiles the next day (Friday). It would take three days if he were using a normal thinset mortar.

He said that we will only have to wait 1 hour after installing the new tiles before grouting the new tiles, so I assume that the rapid set mortar that he plans on using sets super fast. Will he still have enough time to back butter the tiles and make sure that they're installed straight when using a mortar that sets this fast?

Most of the "rapid set" mortars that I've seen online say that you have to wait 2 to 3 hours before grouting - except one (brand "Rapid Set" product "Mortar Mix"). I'm not sure which exact rapid set mortar product he plans on using but I'm nervous that he won't have enough time to do a proper job if the mortar sets so fast. Am I worried for nothing?

As to the original problem, the builder and the tile tradesman, after looking at the grout color issue, both said that the problem was that two different grouts were used. The floor was re-grouted already due to an initial color problem, and they're saying that since two different grouts were used, that's what caused the variation in the color whenever the grout would dry. They're confident that it isn't anything else.
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Last edited by mikem84; 08-08-2018 at 10:05 PM.
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Old 08-09-2018, 10:58 AM   #5
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


Skim coating sounds to me like the slope needs some adjustment....

JAZZ..... if that is ever necessary.....does one just skim coat with a thinset.... or anything special.

TIA
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Old 08-09-2018, 02:20 PM   #6
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


I definitely agree that the skim coat is an attempt to correct/improve the slope. Thinset is a good way to do it especially over a mud base.

* Back a couple posts where an excuse was that someone used two different grouts. How does that happen? Was it repaired already?

Jaz
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Old 08-09-2018, 02:21 PM   #7
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


system duplicated post.
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Old 08-09-2018, 03:34 PM   #8
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


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I definitely agree that the skim coat is an attempt to correct/improve the slope. Thinset is a good way to do it especially over a mud base.

* Back a couple posts where an excuse was that someone used two different grouts. How does that happen? Was it repaired already?
Thank you all for your responses.

Yes, the shower floor was repaired already. Basically, here is the order of what happened:

1) Original shower floor grout had some color issues - seemed to just be dirty grout, as far as I know. To correct this, the shower floor grout was removed and the shower floor was re-grouted. This is when they are saying that a second grout was used (mistakenly, presumably), probably a different brand, perhaps a different color even. It could also be that the original grout wasn't removed completely. It was after this that the grout color issues described in the other thread were present.

2) The shower floor grout was removed again (for re-grouting, again). A bunch of tiles got damaged in the process.

3) They could not sufficiently match the tile color (for replacement tiles) so they are now re-tiling with white tiles and white grout. Earlier today, the old (damaged) tiles were removed entirely but there was still a layer of concrete (mortar?) left over the dry-pack (the mortar from the old tile, I assume). A skim coat was added on top of this mortar. I asked the tradesman what the skim coat is for - he said that it's to make the floor more consistent / uniform before he lays the tiles tomorrow. This seems intuitive because the mortar left from the old tile was not uniform, given that the tile was removed from on top of it. I asked him if there is any slope / preslope issues - he said no, that the slope is good.

Thank you all again for your responses. What do I make of all of this?

Last edited by mikem84; 08-09-2018 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 08-09-2018, 05:23 PM   #9
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


Ok, thanks for your explanation. Sounds like it's going ok.

Talking about "pre-slope". I wonder if you have one? BTW, a pre-slope is placed under the shower pan membrane right on the subfloor in case you're wondering.

Jaz
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Old 08-09-2018, 08:03 PM   #10
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


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Ok, thanks for your explanation. Sounds like it's going ok.

Talking about "pre-slope". I wonder if you have one? BTW, a pre-slope is placed under the shower pan membrane right on the subfloor in case you're wondering.

Jaz
How would I check? Is it possible to check the pre-slope without first removing all of the layers on top of it?

Thanks for the information and for your help.
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Old 08-10-2018, 11:07 AM   #11
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


NO.... No way to check now...(shy of tearout)
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Old 08-12-2018, 10:21 AM   #12
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


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NO.... No way to check now...(shy of tearout)
Oh, that's too bad. Okay, thanks. I would love to know before proceeding further with the repair.
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Old 08-12-2018, 10:30 AM   #13
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


Update on this repair:

Unfortunately, the skim coat did not dry properly. After removing the tile and applying a skim coat last Thursday, the tile tradesman came back on Friday (the next day) to install the new tiles, but the skim coat was still wet in spots. He said to run either a dehumidifier or a ceramic heater + the ceiling fan in the bathroom and hopefully the shower floor will dry by Monday. He will be coming back on Monday to hopefully install the new tiles (if the shower floor is dry). We have been running a dehumidifier in the bathroom with the door closed to hopefully help dry the shower floor in time for our Monday appointment.

Please find attached a photo of the shower floor as of Saturday (yesterday) evening - over two days after the skim coat was applied.

What does this mean?? The wet spots at first looked more spread out and not as dark .. then as some areas of the shower floor appeared to dry, it's as if the moisture "moved" or gathered in other particular areas, making those other particular areas even darker.

Thanks in advance for any responses.
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Old 08-13-2018, 09:00 PM   #14
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


It means the deck mud base is saturated with old shower water and the new application didn't dry. You're probably the owner of a shower with a poor pre-slope or one with no pre-slope at all. This is pretty common and the main reason I only used the Kerdi system the last 10-12 years of my tiling career.

If you broke out the mud down to the membrane, you'd find some very damp concrete (mud).

Jaz
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Old 08-14-2018, 01:43 AM   #15
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Re: Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower flo


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It means the deck mud base is saturated with old shower water and the new application didn't dry. You're probably the owner of a shower with a poor pre-slope or one with no pre-slope at all. This is pretty common and the main reason I only used the Kerdi system the last 10-12 years of my tiling career.

If you broke out the mud down to the membrane, you'd find some very damp concrete (mud).

Jaz
Thank you for letting me know this. I was really hoping this wouldn't be the case.

What do you recommend at this point?

If we wait for the mortar to dry completely, then install the new tiles, then grout the new tiles, then apply a sealer, then caulk the perimeter, should that be good enough?

Should we also replace the drypac beneath the mortar?

Should we even go as far as tearing out the rubber liner and applying a pre-slope, then building everything back up?

Please see attached an updated photo of the shower floor. You can see that it is a bit more dry but not much has changed. We ran a dehumidifier and a ceramic heater with the ceiling fan on to help speed up the drying process (now we're just using the dehumidifier and the ceiling fan). It will probably dry up eventually, but I'm not sure if it is good enough to proceed with just installing new tiles on top while ignoring whatever problem exists underneath.

I really appreciate all of the information. It has been a great help and I have learned a great deal.
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Rapid Setting Tile Mortar for shower floor tile? Is it appropriate for shower floor?-ensuite-shower-floor-still-wet.jpg  

Last edited by mikem84; 08-14-2018 at 01:57 AM.
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