Problems with tiled floor lifting

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deankham
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Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by deankham » May 4, 2022, 11:04 am

We are having on going problems with our tiled ceramic floor lifting.

It's been an ongoing for several years and previously we have fixed small sections. However a much larger section has started. As per the pictures I've been able to lift the tiles out without much effort.

My main worry was / is water leak issues as when I lift a tile out it is damp underneath. However it very quickly dries so I'm thinking this is just condensation, but not 100% sure.

Any thoughts/ ideas as to why this has happened? I'm hoping it is just the result of a crap job by the builders (house is approx 7 years old and is only lived in for several months every year). My worry though is it is a bigger problem that I'm not aware of?

We will change the floor but it is a big job as it is a 1 storey , 3 bedroom home and the floor is the same throughout the whole house.

Thanks for any thoughts / advice.
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parrot
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by parrot » May 4, 2022, 11:30 am

Our house is 24 years old, raised up about 1meter from the ground. This year, we had a similar problem with a one square meter section of our outdoor covered porch. Fortunately, the man we hired was able to lift up the tiles, clean the surface area of the tile/porch, and reset them. Fortunately, none of the tiles broke.........replacements would be impossible to find after all these years. Because the floor is raised up, there was no evidence of moisture. Within the house itself, we've had a few hairline cracks show up over the years but no evidence of tiles lifting up.

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by Potamoi » May 4, 2022, 12:48 pm

deankham wrote:
May 4, 2022, 11:04 am
Any thoughts/ ideas as to why this has happened? I'm hoping it is just the result of a crap job by the builders (house is approx 7 years old and is only lived in for several months every year). My worry though is it is a bigger problem that I'm not aware of?

We will change the floor but it is a big job as it is a 1 storey , 3 bedroom home and the floor is the same throughout the whole house.

Thanks for any thoughts / advice.
If the water dries up and does not come back within a few days I would guess your a correct in the assumption of a crap job originally especially the grout. Again guessing, I would tend to think moisture is making its way under the tile via a leak path in the grout. The dampness does bother me a little regarding a vapor barrier is not often used here. As parrot stated many houses here are built with an air gap to act as a vapor barrier.

You may be able to get someone to refit the tiles quite cheaply rather than re-tile the whole place. It would be good to do the old golf ball test around the house and mark all the loose ones to get an idea of how prolific the issue is. A golf ball bounce on each tile will allow you to hear which ones are coupled to the concrete and which ones are not without the need to crawl around. If you go this repair route you may want to ask the tradesman about re-grouting too. If the ball test shows a high percentage of loose tiles and tiles removed around the house all have moisture, there may be a larger issue at play requiring a different solution. Fingers crossed.

As for a potential water leak switch off all water taps including the clothes washing machine, automatic ice maker etc. Go look at your meter. If any spinning at all check for leaky toilet or tap and isolate if necessary. If then no leak fix the toilet/tap leak and call it good. If spinning, you will need water leak diagnostics which may include some sound equipment. Let's not go down that rabbit hole just yet.

I did the golf ball test as part of the walk around inspection prior to the final payment on our house built in 2009. I found about 7 of my 60x60 tiles were loose in our bungalow so the builder refitted those before we signed off. All still in place today.
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semperfiguy
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by semperfiguy » May 4, 2022, 1:29 pm

I purchased a new home ten years ago in the newer section of our village consisting of about 100 homes, most of which have had these same tile problems. One can walk through the house with a cane pole and bounce the pole off the tiles and easily hear the hollow sound from those which have only had tile cement splattered under each corner instead of being spread under the entire tile. It was just a crap job by a tile team that probably did a poor job of mixing the cement properly and stealing half the allotted bags of cement so they could make some extra money on the side. At least 4 of my neighbors have had all the tiles replaced, and it's a nasty and dusty mess for a couple of weeks. I have put off doing it in my home because I just refuse to have my life upended for that long by laborers who will probably do another crap job and rob me at the same time. One of my greatest nightmares living in Thailand is the thought of having any laborer come into my home to service or repair anything.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by deankham » May 4, 2022, 1:30 pm

Thanks for comments so far.

Regarding refitting the tiles, the problem is they have all bowed. When we did a patch job about 4 years ago, our tiler managed to get 2 boxes of matched tiles and we used them all.

For piece of mind I'd rather redo as a minimum the living / dining areas. So far the bedrooms are all good. Anyway this would be a decision for another day as we head off back overseas end of the week.
I'm in the process of removing the ones that just lift out and the place will stay like that.

So far when I remove a tile, the area dries within a few hours.

Another question, has anyone had good results with a polished concrete floor in a living area? I remember seeing one with some shiny stone flecks mixed in on an episode of grand designs. No idea of how difficult it is and if they wear well.

Cheers

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by BillaRickaDickay » May 4, 2022, 2:23 pm

It's hard to see from the photos but the grout on the in situ tiles looks a bit iffy, do you wash the floor often? Water penetration could be due to the gaps in the grout.
If not then moisture rising due to no DPM.
Moisture meter could help identify the problem.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by tamada » May 4, 2022, 2:24 pm

Last year we had two or three of the large tiles in the lounge/dining start to 'pop' when walked on. We lifted about nine of them to address the shrinkage in the original cement and relaid, unfortunately chipping a couple and breaking one. A very messy half-day of work that needed two days of dust vacuuming afterwards.

Then Potamoi mentioned the golf ball test and we found several others in disparate locations. We will go for a complete retiling job since getting an exact match after 14+ years isn't an option.

Professional car paint shops use those fancy optical devices to ensure perfect color matches, I wonder if that would work on tiles?
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by BillaRickaDickay » May 4, 2022, 2:42 pm

Forgot to say, as we all know Thais love to cut corners, possible cement screed failure due to excessive water in the concrete mix.
Runny cement, easy to pour but leaves a flakey surface.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by noosard » May 4, 2022, 4:04 pm

The problem is that when put down the they were cheap on the cement mix
Had the same thing, replaced one room total used different tiles
another room we tried to match the tiles which broke but the colour is different
Just dont look

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by deankham » May 4, 2022, 4:11 pm

BillaRickaDickay wrote:
May 4, 2022, 2:23 pm
It's hard to see from the photos but the grout on the in situ tiles looks a bit iffy, do you wash the floor often? Water penetration could be due to the gaps in the grout.
If not then moisture rising due to no DPM.
Moisture meter could help identify the problem.
I'm fairly certain we do have issues also with no damp proofing (or again badly done) as we have had problems with paint flaking / getting damp just above the skirting boards in some rooms and outside also on the rear of the house within the first 300mm from ground level.

Is it possible to retro fit a DPM? Or do some other corrective action?

Thanks again.

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by BillaRickaDickay » May 4, 2022, 6:49 pm

You can use a liquid/Bitumen/Resin based product to create a new DPM for the floor. Just pour and spread after prepping.
You will probably have to level up the floor before applying the DPM, Levelling products are available.
Plenty of Vids on YouTube
The walls not so easy, you will probably have to live with the staining as remedies could prove expensive.
YouTube again.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by tamada » May 4, 2022, 9:40 pm

Rising damp in Oodorn. Who would have thought, eh?

WRT polished concrete floor, my stunning Venezuelan interior designer who made my acquaintance when she was a stripper, suggested this in the makeover of my ageing Houston domicile. After the carpets and underlay was removed, the slab was surveyed for irregularities before 3 or 4 days of dusty workover with rotary grinders, a sort of wet and dry sanding process before a clear, epoxy was applied. The end result was very good with a clean aesthetic although it mandated wearing slippers in the winter months.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by pipoz4444 » May 6, 2022, 4:41 pm

Dean

It is likely that the tiles have bowed and popped, because the don't have a little room to move/expand at the perimeter edge, where the tiles meet the wall line.

As for trying to match old color tiles throughout the whole of the house, from one room to another, some use door thresholds to break the look of the tile color or tile pattern or transition to a different floor finish all together. When going from one room to the next, it can look effective. Just a random picture I found on the web.

Door Thresholds.jpg

BOONATHAVORN and use a good quality tile adhesive such as, Crocodile/Jorakay or Weber, when you relay \:D/ \:D/ =D>

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Last edited by pipoz4444 on May 7, 2022, 8:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by deankham » May 6, 2022, 6:05 pm

Great info and thanks for the email also.

Hope all is good with you. Still in the sand pit? Heading back tonight, enjoying a last beer or 4 in swampy at the moment.

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by tamada » May 6, 2022, 11:09 pm

We shared some bad tiling experiences over several beers at Chris's the other day. It seems more common to have issues with the larger tiles that don't have beveled edges? The local artisans penchant is to use bits of thin cardboard as shims and also not leaving a large enough expansion gap where tiles meet walls, restricting the ability to 'float'. The tiles end up too tightly packed with no allowance for expansion. Areas of tile exposed to bigger temperature fluctuations (direct sunlight near doors or windows) and the heavily trafficked areas will likely have issues.

In casa tam where the same guy did all the ceramics, only the lounge/dining that has the larger tiles with very thin grout lines has issues. The smaller tiles with beveled edges in the kitchen/laundry and guest dunny have no problems. The larger tiles in the master ensuite are also problem free but they are beveled with thicker grout lines.
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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by maaka » May 7, 2022, 8:27 am

my first thought was its due to washing the floor and the cement either crap, or cracks inbetween the tiles and the water is seeping in and laying underneath and further eroding the cement..

depending on where the bad tiles are, you could put in new tiles in a wee decorative pattern,
we have a couple of small squares in the bedroom or different colors, and one in the bathroom, and some on the outside patio..

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by glalt » May 12, 2022, 9:49 pm

I had that problem in my Jomtien condo. I went around with a broom stick tapping here and there. Lots of loose tiles. I ended up replacing the entire floor.

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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by Barney » May 13, 2022, 1:07 am

Not sure if injection method of repair has been mentioned for tiles but this video may help

https://youtu.be/YmC0HUrC8rA


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Re: Problems with tiled floor lifting

Post by glalt » May 13, 2022, 8:58 am

If you have many hollow tiles, it would take you many days to use the injection method besides buying, ,probably, overpriced kits.

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