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Thread: uneven marble mosaic tile

  1. #1

    Default uneven marble mosaic tile

    I had a professional tiler come in to lay marble mosaic tiles (octagon style) to complete my bathroom reno. I had him install a heating mat as well.

    The base of the floor was the original floor boards (comepletely level) and 3/4" plywood on top (also completely level).

    Once he finished the job, the floor was wavey. He claims it was because of the heating mat. However, he also didn't grade and lay the tile in the shower either because I have pooling of water.

    I have a two questions. Are his claims about the heating mat valid? is there anything I can do to fix the problem other than riping up the floor and paying a lot of money for new tiles?

    BTW, he also cut the tiles on my hardwood floor and caused water damage to the floor.
    Thanks for your help!
    Last edited by marilynintoronto; 02-22-2009 at 08:33 AM.

  2. #2
    Jack of all trades frenchie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marilynintoronto View Post
    Are his claims about the heating mat valid?
    no.

    is there anything I can do to fix the problem other than riping up the floor and paying a lot of money for new tiles?
    no.

    Once he finished the job, the floor was wavey.

    However, he also didn't grade and lay the tile in the shower either because I have pooling of water.

    he also cut the tiles on my hardwood floor and caused water damage to the floor.
    Sue.


    What, exactly, did you mean at the beginning when you said "professional tiler"? Because this guy, sounds like neither.

    Do you know if he at least used a membrane of some sort in your shower?
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  3. #3
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    A pro should have no trouble keeping the tiles nice and level. Did he use a membrane or cbu on the floor? Tiling directly over plywood can be done, but the requirements are pretty stringent...doesn't sound like you have met those, either.

    The best place to get help with tiling issues is www.johnbridge.com.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  4. #4

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    Depending on the method he used to install the heat mat it can be more prone to giving problems with the finished floor.

    I have found the best method is to well secure the mat to the subfloor, then cover it with self leveling compound, then when hard, tile. If not careful, the mat can float which leads to a leveling problems.

    The mat can also be laid in a layer of thinset which from my experience also makes it harder to get the final floor level.

  5. #5

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    Thanks for all your help.
    My plumber (who was great) installed the membrane in the shower so I think I am ok from a leaking point of view.

    He put the mat directly onto the plywood using staples to secure it and then self leveling cement poured over the entire floor and mat. I saw the cement dry and it was pretty level but the mat had popped up in a few places (obviously not stapled down properly). I think he ran into problems with the thinset (I may have the name wrong - the stuff that adheres the tiles to the floor).

    He was suppose to be professional recommended by a friend who does a lot of renovations. I had called a number of tilers in for a quote and he seemed to know what he was talking about and made me confident about his abilities. He does a lot of commercial stuff so maybe because I was not going to be a repeat customer he didn't give it much care (although he did a great job on the walls).

    Thanks again!

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    In the US anyways, while that method is used, it is not per code and is prone to an unsatisfactory experience in a shower. In all reality, neither the tile nor the grout is the waterproof layer. So, guess what, some moisture will start to accumulate in that mass of concrete underneath your tile. In a properly constructed shower, the waterproofing layer would be set on a sloped bed with weep holes into the drain. With the membrane flat on the floor (you said he stapled it? hopefully only on the top edges!), any moisture that migrates down there essentially just sits there. Think swamp water. It can take up to a few years depending on use and the humidity levels in the house (and may not happen in the desert at all), but eventually, given enough use, it will start to smell. You'll also note that the grout lines start to turn darker and never dry out because of the moisture underneath.

    Suggest you check out www.johnbridge.com and spend some time in their 'Liberry' (sic) on how a shower is supposed to be constructed. Yours was not done to US code, but may be in Canada. The basic guideline is that the waterproof layer MUST be sloped. What some people don't understand is that the tile is not the waterproof layer, it is the liner. Fail at that one feature, and all bets are off.

    Did he staple the liner over the curb? Another common mistake.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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