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Discuss Tiles coming up, cracks, and hollow points in the Tiling Forum area at TilersForums.co.uk.

  1. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London
    I recently had my whole ground floor tiled as part of a larger renovation project.

    On moving back in I noticed a tile with a crack in it which the contractor said would be replaced.

    Over the course of the next two months, a few more tiles developed cracks in them and a few lifted off the floor (assume the adhesive failed)

    I noticed that pretty much all the tiles have numerous hollow points on them which I know is not indicative of a problem but when they took up the visually impaired tiles, I did notice a remarkable lack of adhesive coverage.

    They are 900x900 porcelain tiles weighing in at about 18kg each. It is my understanding that these should be laid on a solid bed with as close to 100% adhesive coverage. Going by the adhesive left on the substrate, it wasn't even 50% on these tiles, and the residue on the large piece of broken tile I'm holding up makes it look like only 25% of that tile was touching any adhesive. Should these tiles have been back buttered as well?

    This explains why those particular tiles had issues but all the other tiles have numerous hollow points. That in conjunction with the obvious gaps under the tiles adjacent to the ones that were taken up make me think most of the tiles were laid in the same way and suffer from the distinct lack of sufficient adhesive coverage.

    The contractor is saying that because the majority are not showing any issues, that they do not need replacing. They are also trying to say the underfloor heating being turned on too soon and too high caused the problems. This seems to be a red herring as heating has nothing to do with the incorrect application of adhesive.

    Would I be correct in saying that it appears the majority of the tiles have not been laid to a high enough standard and need to be redone?

    IMG_20190108_102032.jpg IMG_20190109_102109.jpg IMG_20190109_102115.jpg IMG_20190109_102513.jpg IMG_20190118_173850.jpg IMG_20190118_173919.jpg IMG_20190118_173935.jpg IMG_20190118_173941.jpg IMG_20190109_111234.jpg
     
  2. pdc

    pdc Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler Top Contributor

    What is the substrate? It looks like chipboard.
     
  3. whitebeam

    whitebeam Moderator Staff Member Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler JOTM Winner

    Location:
    Hertfordshire
    How long after the tiles were fixed was the underfloor heating turned on and what temperature ?
     
  4. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London
    the substrate is screed
    IMG_20180806_111122 (1).jpg IMG_20180806_111122 (1).jpg
     
  5. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London
    the tiles were laid in late september, the underfloor heating was turned on december to initially match room temperature and then up a degree every two days
     
  6. Waluigi

    Waluigi Top Contributor

    Location:
    UK
    text book UFH commissioning by the sound of it.

    That screed though. Without wanting to assume what it looks like, do you know what screed it is?
     
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  7. timeless john

    timeless john Moderator Staff Member Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler JOTM Winner Top Contributor

    Location:
    North East England
    Looks like poured gypsum screed - cause I can’t spell anhydrate!
     
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  8. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London

    I'm only going off what the contractors told me but I assume it's the normal sand/cement mix. At what ratios they used I have no idea
     
  9. timeless john

    timeless john Moderator Staff Member Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler JOTM Winner Top Contributor

    Location:
    North East England
    You need to know exactly what the screed is to get the information from the forum that may help your case.
    The tiles should have been solid bed fixed.
     
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  10. Waluigi

    Waluigi Top Contributor

    Location:
    UK
    Yes, look at what John typed regarding the screed type. I agree that the fixing method was wrong but the adhesive used and prep of the floor might also be wrong. I would try to get some details from your contractor.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  11. acaciaguy

    acaciaguy Professional Tiler

    Location:
    coventry
    I agree. Laitance etc my be a factor depend on screed. Many variables. More info the better
     
  12. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London
    I will try and get this information from them but at the moment they're not forthcoming with anything that might imply they're at fault.

    With respect to the solid adhesive, I think I understand what a solid bed is (i.e. you shouldn't see the trowel ridges as in the pictures) but what is solid bed fixed?
     
  13. acaciaguy

    acaciaguy Professional Tiler

    Location:
    coventry
    Solid bed is near if not 100% coverage of adhesive between tile and substrate. It needs to be of a sufficient depth depending on tile and state of substrate. In your case you would want a 20mm x 10. Round notched trowel with a back skin to the time to ensure 100%
     
  14. DazedConfused

    DazedConfused Active Member

    Location:
    London
    I'll try and find out what screed was used tomorrow.

    In what was was the fixing method wrong?

    The adhesive used was 4trade Floor & Wall Tile Adhesive - Fast Set.

    Is there anyway to determine if primer was used to prep the floor before tiling?

    IMG_20190122_090748.jpg
     
  15. impish

    impish Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler Top Contributor

    Location:
    Preston, Lancs
    Looks like a typical "rubbish" installation by idiots. i.e. lack of coverage, failure to back butter, no priming etc etc.
    I would add though, that picture number 2 appears to show a crust stuck to the ribs under the tiles.
    Could this be a layer of laitence which is debonded from the main screed? You can get laitence on any screed, not just anhydrite.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
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