Floor Tile Question

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    Floor Tile Question

    When my wife and I bought our current house we weren't too thrilled with the saltillo tile that was used, but we figured we could eventually replace it. After we moved in we were talking to our neighbor about doing just that and he informed us that the semi-custom builder that built our houses didn't use grout between the tiles, but concrete instead and thus would be a real PITA to remove the saltillo tile.

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    I'm trying to come up with options to deal with this and still get the tile my wife and I actually want in the house. I'm a software developer and public speaker... I've done tilework before (backsplashes and such) but nothing like this. On some of the HGTV home flipping shows I've seen them use a "leveling" cement to make a floor level, could this be used on top of the saltillo tiles to give me a flat surface (I'd still have to do something with the transition from tile to carpet, as the new tile would be noticeably higher. Or could I remove the tiles and knock down as much of the "grout" as possible and then use the leveling cement?

    I really don't like the tiles we have and they drive my wife nuts as even when they're clean the floor looks dirty.


    Suggestions?

    #2
    concrete is grout but with more agg in it, concrete wouldn't look like grout.

    buy or rent a chisel, even a 1/2" hammer/drill would probably be fine, chisel up everything that is there and try to get it flatish by removing the things on top of the slab, then put your skim coat or self leveler or just use the same mortar you'd use for tile depending on how fucked up the subfloor is after removing the tiles.


    Up is difficult, down is dangerous

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      #3
      Without grinding to give the tile some tooth for self leveller to grab its a waste.
      Buy a chipper, and get to breaking them up.

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        #4
        If the tiles are solid, I don't see why you couldn't tile and carpet over them. I have tile to carpet from an entrance way to the living room and the transition is no big deal.
        Check out my project
        https://irate4x4.com/general-4x4/2779-amphibious-hemtt

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          #5
          I'm not an expert but learned a bunch with a forced remodel after a pipe burst.

          You can either demo it all down to the subfloor or you can build it up with with a new layer of essentially subfloor for whatever you put on top. The big problem with the second option is the height change with adjacent surfaces. You can use threshold molding to bridge that change but I generally prefer everything is close to the same level as possible.

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            #6
            I hate to say it, but gregj50 seems to know his stuff. I'd check with him.

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              #7
              The grout/cement is the least of your issues. No difference to demo.

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                #8
                Originally posted by Boss View Post
                The grout/cement is the least of your issues. No difference to demo.
                No kidding, once you are swinging a ten pound sledgehammer it's all rubble.

                Unless construction adhesive is involved. That stuff is the devil.

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                  #9
                  Ok. Looks like ripping up a tile or two in the laundry room closet is in order to figure out just how much work this is going to be. I figure I can at least get the old stuff out of the way, it should save on the labor cost. Doing 1000 sqft of floor is a bit more than a kitchen back-splash, and I'd rather it be a 10 day project than a 10 month project

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by MChat View Post
                    Ok. Looks like ripping up a tile or two in the laundry room closet is in order to figure out just how much work this is going to be. I figure I can at least get the old stuff out of the way, it should save on the labor cost. Doing 1000 sqft of floor is a bit more than a kitchen back-splash, and I'd rather it be a 10 day project than a 10 month project
                    srsly rent a demo hammer, then you just sit there and hang on and drive it through everything


                    Up is difficult, down is dangerous

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                      #11
                      ^^What he said.

                      It'll come up pretty easily with a demo hammer.

                      Be sure and use plastic or some other means to block off the rest of the house, it's gonna get dusty!

                      My first tile floor I put in was about 700sqft worth. Took us about a week. Started Friday night ripping stuff up. Had it all put back together by the next weekend.

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                        #12
                        If it were me I'd get the demo chisel and get to laying hell to it. Depending on what you want to go back with will determine next steps. I prefer to have everything on the same level. Raising the floor level up is just another pain in the ass that results in more work IMO (base board moulding, transition strips, etc.). We decided to go with that wood looking tile that was about 2' long and 6" wide. That shit does not like unlevel ground. I ended up pouring a leveling compound out and trying my best to get it to level. Then I went over that with Ditra and laid the tile. If you're looking to go back with square tile (12" or less) I wouldn't sweat it that much. Most of that can be floated out with the mortar. They make these badass levelers that can help. You put them under the edges and lay all your tile down. Once the tiles are set, you go back and break them all off with a hammer and then spread your grout. Pretty trick for large areas.

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                          #13
                          X whatever on a demo hammer with a flat chisel.

                          I've demoed more tile floors than I care to count (commercial construction) and every single one was done with them.

                          Wear a respirator or spray the area down with water for the dust. Silica dust is no bueno.

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                            #14
                            Great advice. Thank you for all of the input. I'll check out the Demo Hammer.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Does that saltillo tile look bad? I was considering satillo installed in my home, but the cost and yearly upkeep killed that idea in a New York moment. I actually went with a satillo knock off tile. IMHO: Back the truck up and see if the satillo is of more value then what you intend to replace it with.

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