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Old 11-29-2017, 01:48 PM   #1
A_DAB_will_do
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Basement laundry and bathroom rehab after small flood

So, just as I was preparing to do the floor in my first floor bathroom I was struck down by my annual sinus infection. Once that cleared Mother Nature decided to rain on my parade, literally. My home was in an area that received almost 4 inches of rain in less than 4 hours. This created some minor surface flooding that revealed an incompletely repaired foundation crack.

So, the first floor bath remodel went on hold. And the future basement remodel became the number one priority. I'm racing the clock to see if I can get it back together before the in-laws visit for the Christmas holiday.

Some photos follow showing the demolition and the new floor tile.
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Old 11-29-2017, 02:04 PM   #2
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First block of photos

The pictures are a somewhat random assortment. There aren't any here of the rooms before the flood or with the damages that resulted. The rain revealed a faulty skylight in the living room. Once we'd removed the furniture from harms way and placed a bucket to catch drips, I went to the basement to see what mischief the gremlins were up to. I was not disappointed.

The house basement is fully finished. The North end of the space where the leak happened is 3 rooms. (West to East) A laundry room with utility closet. A bathroom. and a bedroom. The leak was found beneath a glass block window in the basement wall. The window is behind the toilet in the bathroom.

The old flooring has already been removed from the laundry and the bathroom. Sheet vinyl flooring is one of the devil's creations, along with the adhesive used to hold it down. The bedroom has carpet which will be salvaged in teh short term and replaced with tile in the long run. We discovered the leak as water emerged from beneath the bathroom walls. We were able to evacuate all the furniture and peal back the bedroom carpet ahead of the floodwaters. A dike made from all of our bath towels held back the waters until the rain storm abated and I was able to clean up the water.

Professional cleanup companies recommended removing all the base molding and drilling large holes in the drywall at the base of the walls in the flooded areas. A moisture meter is about $25 and was used extensively to check and ensure that all the drywall was not wet and that the studs in the walls dried out. I've sprayed a healthy dose of concrobium mold arrestor everywhere you can see that was wet.
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Old 11-29-2017, 02:36 PM   #3
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Demo completed and new tile started

Since the flood I've had a foundation company come in and seal the crack in the foundation wall. It was behind the studs that made up the wall behind the toilet. It's supposed to rain here tomorrow, so I'm going to see what the crack does with a fresh dose of rain.

I scraped up the remnant of the paper backing and adhesive from the floor first. Then my wife and I used a 4" diamond grinding cup to clean and roughen the floor of the laundry and the bathroom. This was surprisingly easy with a grinder shroud that has a port for a shop vac. I used a vac with the filter and a drywall bag to capture and contain all the grinding dust. We work P95 masks and safety glasses just in case. Took us about 2-3 hours and 3 dust bags for the vac to clean the whole floor back to virgin concrete. Cost about $60 for the tools and bags off of amazon.com. The diamond wheel still looks brand new. I had to modify the grinder guard/shroud a bit so the wheel would contact the floor.

The attached pictures show the areas of the floor before and after prep. Color variations in the floor after prep, while tile is being laid, are due to spraying the floor with water to keep the dry concrete from sucking all the water out of the thinset. It's tough to see, but the floor under the old linoleum was a nightmare of paper backing, adhesive, floor paint, and black mold. My basement foundation must have been leaking slowly for a long time to grow the mold colony I found in the middle of the laundry room floor. Cleaning that up was no fun.
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Old 11-29-2017, 02:53 PM   #4
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Here we are today with 90% of the tile laid and awaiting grout. The tile is a bargain basement product from the blue big box store. $0.79 a square foot, on sale. Would I like a more expensive tile? Yes. But for an emergency repair on a basement space, I'm grateful for the low cost alternative.

Here's where things stand today. Tile was laid with Mapei's ceramic tile thinset mortar. I've used this product throughout the house with great success.

For those wondering why no crack isolation membrane, I did think about it. But the cost was prohibitive for this project and my head already hits the ceiling in the basement in some areas. The floor has some crazy elevation changes; some places are 2" in 6 ft. So I don't want to build up the floor any more than absolutely necessary.

Some of the tiles are not perfectly set and have more lippage than I want. But there simply isn't enough time to grind down the high spots and pouring self leveling cement would take up valuable head space. The foundation dates from the mid 1940's, so I'm going to gamble that it's not going to move much more. I'm also hoping that the polymer modifiers in the thinset give me enough flex to deal with any seasonal shifts.

I'm considering using some of Mapei's grout maximizer in the grout for the floor for the same reasons. Reviews seem good and I like the apparent ease of use. I've thought about epoxy grout, but I'm not quite ready to make the leap. I've used cementious grouts on my previous tile projects with some success.
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Old 11-29-2017, 03:01 PM   #5
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Next comes grouting the floor in the tiled areas. Then moving the washer and dryer onto the new floor. Then finishing the tile and grout. Then the washer hookups get swapped with the utility sink hookups. Then the washer and dryer go to their permanent home in the North-West corner of the laundryroom. The base cabinets and countertop with utility sink go back along the south wall of the laundry room. Then paint and new baseboard trim. I'm thinking of finding some interior/exterior PVC trim instead of wood or MDF. The old trim was MDF and swelled like a paperback book when it got wet. I'm thinking the PVC will be imprevious to water and can easily be installed with screws if for easy removal if we ever have another flood.

Next year the bedroom carpet comes out and the same tile gets continued into the bedroom. There are a couple funky cut tiles int he doorway from the bath to the bedroom. I'll remove those and just continue the tile pattern from the bathroom into the bedroom like I did from the laundry to the bath.

I've got some color matched caulk that I'll use in the bath room doorways and where the tile meets the shower pan. Hopefully this will address any expansion control needed to keep tiles from buckling in the future.
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Old 11-29-2017, 09:22 PM   #6
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Welcome back, Dave.

I'm not seeing a question for us. What am I missing?
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Old 11-30-2017, 09:34 AM   #7
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Hi CX,

Actually, for once I don't have any show stopper questions that need answers before I forge ahead with the project. My thanks to you for checking in and asking. That's one of the reasons I take the time to post here.

I suppose this just an overview of another project. I imagine lots of my fellow residents of SW Ohio are dealing with similar basement flooding issues. I posted to offer an example of what I'm doing to deal with the fallout from the heavy rainfall. This isn't anywhere near what happened in Houston and Florida earlier this year. But it's been a major inconvenience for me and lots of others in the area.

The tool rental companies had no air movers to rent within 48 hours. Water/mold cleanup companies and insurance adjusters were 2 weeks lead time when I called. This has turned out to be a modest inconvenience for me and my family. But if I'd sat on my hands until the contractors were able to deal with the problem it would've been a mold cleanup catastrophe. Because I acted quickly and jumped in, the cost to fix this won't be worth it to even file an insurance claim.

It's my hope that someone might look at this post and realize that flood cleanup and repair/improvement is not an impossible task. I've taken on 5 tiling projects in two different homes, with what I'll call acceptable outcomes. I guess I'm hoping someone else will see this and realize they can deal with this type of situation themselves.

The only thing holding me up at this point is my day job. I'm debating using a grout additive like Mapei's grout maximizer. If anyone had experience with that specific product, I'd appreciate it if they chimed in.
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Old 11-30-2017, 11:34 PM   #8
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Not a big fan of any of any of the "additives" to grout.

I'm a way bigger fan of buying a grout that I know will dry to the color I expect. Like Laticrete's Permacolor.

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Old 12-01-2017, 08:54 AM   #9
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Thanks Tool-guy,

So is it just color shift when using additives? Or do you have concerns about how durable the grout is when mixed with additives; specifically these Mapei products I mentioned?
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Old 12-01-2017, 08:28 PM   #10
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Problem with grout firing off way too fast. Clean up becomes arduous. I haven't seen or heard of one brand being significantly different from another.

What is your attraction to the additive? That it provides some stain resistance? Or???


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Old 12-04-2017, 11:10 AM   #11
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Yes, added stain/mold/mildew resistance. Any a certain amount of laziness.

Mapei's additive and their grout come ready-to-mix in the correct proportions. 1 bottle of additive to 10lbs bag of grout. There's a certain appeal to dumping bottle A into dry mix B and being ready to go. I normally mix grout in smaller batches. But I had help with the grout clean up, so I used all 10lbs and whole bottle of additive.

I mixed the product on Friday night per the instructions and found it more fluid than I'm used to. Next batch I think I'll reserve the 10%-15% that they mention in the instructions. I see what you meant about going off faster. I noticed that once the grout started to stiffen, it went pretty quickly.

Still it worked and I'm sure the more fluid mix flowed better into any spaces under the edges of the tiles.
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Old 12-04-2017, 06:43 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A_DAB_will_do
Next batch I think I'll reserve the 10%-15% that they mention in the instructions.
You hold back that 10%-15% and you’ll see it fire off even faster.

You’ve been warned young Skywalker.

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