Removing mortar from concrete? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


View Full Version : Removing mortar from concrete?

02-07-2006, 11:20 PM
We are remodeling and removed some ceramic tile that was on top of a concrete slab. Now we have mortar that is on the concrete. How can we remove the mortar? So far, we've been using a chisel and a hammer. Is there an easier way? Thanks for any help you can give.

Sponsored Links

Tool Guy - Kg
02-07-2006, 11:21 PM
You could rent a concrete scarifier and a grinding cup. That would clean it up in a hurry. And make lots of dust. :)

02-07-2006, 11:43 PM
Some scarifiers have a vac attachment so there won't be any dust. Atleast mine does.

02-08-2006, 10:22 PM
shot blast it

02-09-2006, 04:17 PM
What do you mean "shot blast it?"

02-09-2006, 08:06 PM
Here's how I removed the thinset from a hallway, entryway, kitchen and bathroom after removing the tiles. I rented what looks like a large, electric hammer drill from Home Depot. You can get a long, wide "blade" (like 6-7 inches wide) that will allow you to almost stand upright while you do this. The blade should be kept at enough angle so you don't auger into the concrete floor, but chips off the thinset. Too steep and the concrete will start to chip out. Not steep enough and the blade will skate over the thinset. You'll get the hang of it. Here's another tip that's been debated by many people. Wet the thinset before chipping it off to just about eliminate any dust. It also makes the thinset much easier to remove. (at least most of the common thinsets used) The longer you can let the thinset soak, the better. I did part of my kitchen the day after I soaked the floor with water (no puddles, but definitly wet!) and let it sit overnight. The thinset was almost pasty the next day.
Oh yeah, get some ear plugs!

02-09-2006, 08:57 PM
i use a 1 1/8 inch sds rotary hammer drill about 11 lbs and a wide chisel wetting helps with dust. u can rent for about 40 a day

02-09-2006, 09:03 PM
Hasbro --

Whatever you were removing, it was not a cement-based mix-powder-with-water thinset. Cement-based thinset will soften in water about as much as a cement-based concrete sidewalk does in the rain.

02-10-2006, 02:14 PM
A shot blasting machine works by spinning, with quite a bit of force, B-Bs or buckshot against the surface to be cleaned. The system is totally enclosed and has a built in vacuum to pick up debris and used shot. The system is the ideal way to prep a concrete slab. The slab ends up perfectly clean and roughed up enough to give the material your applying, thinsets, SLCs etc., a great surface to bond to.

Unfortunately you can not easily rent one and if you do they are very expensive. Although they come in a variety of sizes from ride on to a hand held, most models are too large to maneuver around in a residential setting. They are really meant for large open spaces.