DIY Home Improvement Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello All,

We have a pool house that I'm remodeling. It has a concrete pad that had carpeting glued to it. After stripping that, I found old vinyl tiles. Everything came up pretty will and after assessing its condition, I think that any residual adhesive is minimal. Pretty lucky in that regard...

After thinking over options, I'm tending toward ceramic floor tile. It looks good and the price can be reasonable if you're a careful shopper and DIY'er. I also have lots of experience. Only one problem comes to mind. It's an outbuilding and we live up north. There's no heat in the building and the pad will be exposed to freeze-thaw cycles like any other outbuilding.

I've never used tile in an area exposed to freezing conditions. Is there reason to be concerned about ceramic tile cracking under these conditions? Is an exterior grade tile required? Any thoughts appreciated...

Thanks,

Peter
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,444 Posts
Plenty of reasons for concern.It's not going to work out well.Why are you considering putting ceramic tiles in an outbuilding to begin with?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Mako,

I'm considering tile for all the normal reasons. It looks better. It's a perfect fit for water. It looks better, etc...

When I say outbuilding, I don't mean to imply a utility shed. It's a 25x25 structure that's adjacent to a large inground pool. It's time for a remodel and we want the space "nice" if we're going to do the work...

There was carpet in there, but it didn't work well with water. Even indoor-outdoor carpets and water don't really mix. I'm not fond of vinyl; either in look or working with it to be honest. I'd much rather use tile give the two.

After posting I looked around the web for a while. It seems that some tile (particularly porcelain) is rated for freeze-thaw. I'll have to be careful picking materials.

Thanks for your reply.
 

·
Tileguy
Joined
·
6,050 Posts
Hi guys,

mako1 said:
Why are you considering putting ceramic tiles in an outbuilding to begin with?
Alsomee said:
I'm considering tile for all the normal reasons. It looks better. It's a perfect fit for water.
:thumbup:

I definitely agree with that! What would be another sensible choice?

A true porcelain would be as good or better than any other type of tiles to consider. Tell us about the slab, any cracks or control joints, do you know how flat it is? I don't mean by just looking for flatness. Is it a floating slab, does it have proper footings?

Oh, did I mention tile would look better and is a perfect fit for water? :wink:

Jaz
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi Jaz,

Thanks for your reply.

The floor is in excellent condition IMO. No cracks are apparent. There are no control joints. There's nothing at all that would impair tiling. Nice and flat, although it is sloped for drainage to a center drain (which has however, been filled in).

I'm not sure of its age. I would have guessed 1970s, until we started the remodel. But I took FOUR roofs off the damn thing before I hit roof decking and the decking was tongue and groove. I would have suspected that our area would have been using plywood in the 70s, so I suspect that it's actually older. The last layer of roofing removed also pre-dated the 70s according to my Father. I was around, but not roofing in the 70s, so I can neither deny nor confirm that. Any age is possible. Our house was built in 1920.

The point is that this is an old building in remarkably good shape from my perspective. It was not built sloppily.

"Is it a floating slab, does it have proper footings?"

We're encroaching on an area where I'm sort of underpowered in the knowledge department. It's not a floating slab. This isn't garage-type construction. The building has a real block foundation. Whether or not there are proper footings below frost line I can't say, because I'm just not knowledgeable enough.
 

·
Tileguy
Joined
·
6,050 Posts
It's sounding good to me from here. The next issue may be what will you need to do about any adhesive residue. That is sometimes tricky and the answer may vary depending on the type it is and what the manufacturer of the thinset you choose wants.

Jaz
 
  • Like
Reactions: SeniorSitizen

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,345 Posts
Porcelain is recommended over ceramic for freeze/thaw but that assumes it will get wet. Like, wet from rain, the tile gets wet, and then it freezes. Or it snows, some melts into the tile, then it refreezes.

For that reason, porcelain is better because it is less porous to water. But in your situation, is the tile going to get wet, then freeze? It sounds like no. So I see no reason to avoid ceramic off the top of my head.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Guys,

"The next issue may be what will you need to do about any adhesive residue."

-Jaz

I think we've been very lucky in that department. The vinyl tiles were extremely old. The adhesive was so weak that the carpet that was glued on top actually pulled most of the vinyl. The rest scraped very easily. Basically, the adhesive was completely broken down. There's very little residue to contend with at all. There aren't even any ridges or trowel marks from its application. I hit an area with water and scraped for a while and I can get the concrete essentially clean. Do you think that's worth it?

The residual adhesive will not physically impact laying the tiles; it's too thin a layer. The only possible issue would be chemical reaction/ weakening of the thinset.

The adhesive itself is black in color and laid surprisingly thin with no sign of troweling, if that helps any.

And Jeff asks:

"n your situation, is the tile going to get wet, then freeze?"

Nope. The tile should be dry all winter, since it's inside. The only real issue is temperature, not water plus temperature.

Thanks for the comments guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,345 Posts
Then as far as I know, porcelain has no advantage over ceramic, even in freezing temperatures, or so-called freeze/thaw cycles. It would only apply if water were actually freezing and thawing inside the tile, not the air temperature going above and below freezing.
 

·
Retired Moderator
Joined
·
25,769 Posts
I've done a couple of exterior screen porches here in Illinois--many years with no failures.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks to all!

We're going porcelain, since we found a very affordable Italian tile we like at Lowes. I'd prefer not to get into the Chinese stuff, and a lot of the super low cost tile seems to be Chinese. I've had some luck with Chinese stone, but I wouldn't trust tile. It's even stocked, so between the low price and no shipping, it will be hard to beat it, even online. I'll TSP the floor to get up any loose adhesive and give it a go.

Thanks again for all the replies.
 

·
Tileguy
Joined
·
6,050 Posts
Alsomee,

I think you're going down the correct path with what I've heard.

Re:the type of tiles. Although you don't need real porcelain, you may as well go for it anyway. Most floor tiles these days are porcelain since the manufacturing process is no longer much more expensive than making absorbent soft bisque ceramic tiles. If there's any doubt, just drop a few drops of water on the back and see if it soaks in right away or just sits there. That's no guarantee and not the way it's tested, but a good visual. Of course the boxes should be marked "porcelain" and tell you it meets ANSI A137-1.

The black adhesive is either an emulsion, or what is called "cut-back". Both may contain some asbestos, esp. if it was made in the '80's or earlier. It's not a problem unless your sand/scrape and breathe the fibers.

Emulsion was cheaper and sometimes can be partially removed with hot water or can actually disappear when there's too much moisture in the slab. That might be the case in yours.
Alsomee said:
The adhesive was so weak that the carpet that was glued on top actually pulled most of the vinyl. The rest scraped very easily. Basically, the adhesive was completely broken down.
Doing a few tests is your first step. Unless it comes off with water, you should be ok to leave it if there's just a film left using a thinset that says so. Film=you can see through it and can therefore see concrete.

You may want to consider a liquid membrane or a product such as Ditra on the slab if you wanna "buy" some insurance.

Double check the sloping to the old drain. If you had a drain, the floor is not flat. But it may not be enough to matter.

The residual adhesive will not physically impact laying the tiles; it's too thin a layer. The only possible issue would be chemical reaction/ weakening of the thinset.
Well.....yea. :yes:

The adhesive itself is black in color and laid surprisingly thin with no sign of troweling, if that helps any.
Brush on/roll on, no trowels, like paint.

We're going porcelain, since we found a very affordable Italian tile we like........I'd prefer not to get into the Chinese stuff
Good move. Everyone knows Italian ......GOOD ........ Chinese........not so much at best. BTW, besides China, some of the cheapest quality comes from Mexico and South America, but that's a generalization. The Chinese may very well make the good stuff too, just no reason to import it here. Plus the good manufacturers might try to block those products since China has a tendency to steal/copy ideas and trademarks. Sorry for running off the road a bit. :whistling2:

Jaz
 
  • Like
Reactions: Alsomee
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top