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Old 07-14-2006, 08:42 AM   #1
highcountry
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Help...MUST REMOVE TILE

Well, Murphy's Law hit. I had tiled my entire kitchen with 12 inch floor tile. Unfortunately, the finish carpenter installed the island in the wrong place. Because they will have to move the island 20 inches, the hole drilled for electic service will show. The knee wall was attached through the other grout lines, apparently. So, I may not have a problem there, except to fill in those holes in the grout.
So, my question is how to remove that tile (on Ditra) without damaging adjacent tiles.
Any and all suggestions will be greately appreciated.
Ken
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Old 07-14-2006, 08:45 AM   #2
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I use a hammer drill and start drilling multiple holes in the tile. Then I get out a little flat bar or cold chisel and start chipping it up little by little.
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Old 07-14-2006, 10:54 AM   #3
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Was it the carpenter's fault?

If the error was clearly the fault of the carpenter, I'd approach him and request some compensation for your additional effort and cost in repairing the tile flooring...maybe a reduction in the cost of his labor???

However, if the mistake was because of unclear construction plans, a change order, etc. where the carpenter wasn't the sole one at fault it is a different matter - you might just have to bite the bullet on it.
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Old 07-14-2006, 11:15 AM   #4
sgp
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Hi Ken,
Make sure you remove the grout around it first, so you don't translate the impacts to the other tiles.
Someone else can comment on whether your Ditra will survive or need to be patched, I've never used it.(yet)
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:01 PM   #5
highcountry
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Yea, our contractor will be paying for the mistake for sure. I just don't want some unexperienced person making more of mess.
I had heard removing the grout is the first step. I also like the idea a removing small pieces at a time. Actually, a Rotozip with diamond blade could be real helpful I think. I really don't suspect the Ditra below will survive and I am not sure I wouldn't want it replaced anyway after pulling on it.
Ken
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Old 07-14-2006, 01:17 PM   #6
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I would just smack them with a 2.5 lb sledge hammer and chisel off the pieces...seems to work ok for me. With the drill you stand more of a chance of drilling into the ditra than you have in improved potential to remove over just smacking with the sledge.
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Old 07-14-2006, 02:54 PM   #7
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+1 on the Sledge!
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Old 07-14-2006, 02:59 PM   #8
EEEO
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I should have mentioned removing the grout first!

Regardless, most hammer drills have depth guages that come with them--set it to slightly thicker than what the tile is and there is no concern of drilling through the Ditra. With a sledge, I'd be concerned about telegraphing blows to neighboring tiles and you're almost sure of having to replace the Ditra as you'll probably pulverize the mortar it was set with.
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Old 07-17-2006, 11:04 AM   #9
highcountry
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Follow-up regarding collateral damage!

No doubt the tiles can be removed with brute force, but what about collateral damage to adjacent tiles? Not so much what one can see, but one can't see. Could adjacent tile be loosened with the pounding? Any experiences with this?? What we are worried about is moving into the house and later down the road some tiles let loose. Of course then the contractor will not feel that obligated to correct the mistake.
We really would like some experiences folks have had on this issue. We may have have some legal language written up when we close on the house to cover us.
Ken
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Old 07-17-2006, 07:47 PM   #10
EEEO
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I agree. That's why I prefer the method I described. Granted, it's possible that one could break up the tiles with a sledge and it wouldn't create any additional problems, but I'm paranoid.
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Old 07-18-2006, 11:48 AM   #11
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Thumbs up

use a grout saw ,take your time,then hammer and chisel,sometimes once you get an edge of the tile broken off you can get a flat bar underneath it and pop it up,main thing is take your time,it really isnt as hard as it at first seems. good luck
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Old 07-18-2006, 12:34 PM   #12
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I pull lots of tiles from the middle of the field. I've refined it I think pretty well.
I use a razor knife or carbide scribe to remove all the grout around the tile. If it's over ditra I cut a perimeter all the way around the tile throught the open grout joint and through the ditra. I hate pounding the floor with a hammer as I have caused Debonding of adjacent tiles. I use a large diameter hole saw/core bit and core it into tiny circles that pop up easily. If your pulling or prying it becomes very important to have the ditra cut so if it debonds from the floor it does not affect the other tiles.

A drill will work if you don't have core bit, but I'd spend more time drilling than hammering. Just my 2cents
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