Contractor Talk - Professional Construction and Remodeling Forum banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
bathroom guru
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was asked to come look at a job that was done by another company (who I have never heard of).

This "crew" had installed about 600 sq ft of 12x24 porcelain tile starting at the front door and going into the kitchen.

The problem is (and yes, this is a true story) - these jokers used MASTIC to set the tiles, then grouted the following day - although it took them 4 days to set the tiles, I'm sure the stuff put down the first day wasn't cured. Oh, and they used 1/4" luan as an underlay - and yes, they nailed it with ring nails!

This job was done about a month ago and already about a 1/3 of the grout is cracked or soft (imagine that!)

The homeowner is going to try and salvage some tile and here is my question: Do you think a high pressure washer will remove all the mastic without too much work?? Personally I think he should just bite the bullet and buy new tile.

Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
if its porcelan a razor scraper will probably remove the glue pretty easily,if the glue is still kind of soft then yes a pressure washer will work.

get a small kiddie pool full of water and soak them overnight and the glue will probably reemulsify.
 

·
Motorboatin' son of a ...
Joined
·
1,104 Posts
I saw a bathroom once that was horrible. This laborer was working for a GC and said he knew how to do tile. The GC hired him so he could pay him next to nothing and save a ton money of course. Put the 12x12 tile right on the wood subfloor, tub surround, and 42" up the wall directly on the drywall. Space between tiles was anywhere from 1/4" up to 1". When I came in to do the cabinets the homeowner asked if I liked the tile because she "simply loved it". I told her that's all that matters, as long as you like it.

Couple days later the guy was back ripping it all out so the regular tile guy with 30 years experience could install it the right way. Never saw "tile man" again.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
14,078 Posts
Unfortunately I think OWTM's plan would work.

However I'm not 100% certain I would pass along the info to the client. I'm kind of an ass that way. Cost of the new tile will sting enough to allow me to avoid having to say I told you so to the cheap ass.
 

·
Carpe Diem
Joined
·
20,742 Posts
Citrus-based cleaners will definitely clean it up. Not sure how much is on the tile or how effective the citrus cleaner will be on a large scale but I have used it successfully on a few small tiles.
 

·
Thom
Joined
·
4,137 Posts
I'm with Mike on this.

It's not my job to rescue homeowners from the problems they bring on themselves by hiring the cheap guy. They knew up front what they were doing, they decided to pay someone who would work for less than fair wages, let them pay for it.

besides, if you let the homeowner clean the tile, you're going to end up doing much of it yourself for free. They will insist they did what you said, you will be re-doing their work to make your job look right. If you figure on cleaning the tile, it will cost as much as new tile.

Re-installing used tile will result in chips and nicks, and overall a non-professional job.
 
  • Like
Reactions: kevjob

·
bathroom guru
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The HO is definately the one that will be trying to salvage tiles. As for not passing on the info, I guess I'm not that kind of ass!!

They will be paying me well for this job!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
14,078 Posts
The HO is definately the one that will be trying to salvage tiles. As for not passing on the info, I guess I'm not that kind of ass!!

They will be paying me well for this job!
That's what we all optomistically believe.

besides, if you let the homeowner clean the tile, you're going to end up doing much of it yourself for free. They will insist they did what you said, you will be re-doing their work to make your job look right.
This is what the job costing will show at the end no matter how optomistic we were.
 

·
Pompass Ass
Joined
·
2,090 Posts
I was asked to come look at a job that was done by another company (who I have never heard of).

This "crew" had installed about 600 sq ft of 12x24 porcelain tile starting at the front door and going into the kitchen.

The problem is (and yes, this is a true story) - these jokers used MASTIC to set the tiles, then grouted the following day - although it took them 4 days to set the tiles, I'm sure the stuff put down the first day wasn't cured. Oh, and they used 1/4" luan as an underlay - and yes, they nailed it with ring nails!

This job was done about a month ago and already about a 1/3 of the grout is cracked or soft (imagine that!)

The homeowner is going to try and salvage some tile and here is my question: Do you think a high pressure washer will remove all the mastic without too much work?? Personally I think he should just bite the bullet and buy new tile.

Any thoughts?
Don't waste your time trying to salvage the tile, give them a bid to remove and dispose of the tile and a bid to install new tile correctly, along with the proper subfloor.

Trying to salvage the tile will be more work that it is worth.

I they don't want to buy new tile, give them the name of your competitor.
 

·
Contractor
Joined
·
7,725 Posts
My Thoughts.

Who is to say that thinset, (the real stuff), will adhere properly to the back of a tile that has been smeared with some kind of goop that has been washed off.

Some of that goop is still on/in the tile, filling the pores that the thinset will usually grab onto.

I would look at the tile as being treated with a bond breaker.....no go on reuse. :no:
 

·
Motorboatin' son of a ...
Joined
·
1,104 Posts
wow 1/4 to 1 inch thats pretty small for a DIY.:whistling:blink:
What was crazy was the home owner thought it looked great. Someone must have tipped her off. Wish I would have had my camera that day, would have been good for a laugh.
 

·
Tile Contractor
Joined
·
1,249 Posts
Replace the tile and start fresh. No reason to throw good money away on bad.:)

The bonding of the thinset to the tile relies on microscopic pores in the tile. Once these pores are closed with a previous application of mastic the opportunity for the thinset to bond to the tile is diminished. There is no way the mastic can be 100% removed from the tile even if you can't see it, it is there.:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,523 Posts
I've done it on wall tile that had to be reused. Soaked the tile in water and scrapped 2 days later. Let dry a few days then installed with mastic (original setting material). Was time consuming process with all the moving and stacking and moving...

Don't know how well floor tile will bond in this scenario. Sure is FUBAR, though.
 

·
Paul
Joined
·
4,120 Posts
A small sand blaster would also work and would ensure there would be pores for new thinset to bond to. Problem is the time it would take to blast them and then rinse and dry them all would probably be worth more than the tile...
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,020 Posts
Saving the tile

I'm all for saving the tile but would fear that the mastic would somewhat seal the back side. Thin-set gains strength from the crystal like growth of the cement. I wonder if the mastic would prevent this.

I would contact a company like Mapei that makes both Mastic and Thin-set and check with a tech.

Seems like a huge waste of materials just to bin it. Could the floor tile be set on the wall and new floor tile purchased for the floor?

JW
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top