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Unread 02-25-2020, 11:05 AM   #1
clax66
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Join Date: Aug 2008
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SLC, mortar, patch or thinset

Hi guys, going to tile a 35 sq/ft basement bathroom floor that has a hydronically heated concrete floor about 2 years old. I have realized the floor is undulating with differences of 3/8 of an inch both hills and valleys. Hard to imagine in 35 sq/ft but the floor guy was a disaster.
I like the idea of maybe grinding down a few of the high spots and floating the low spots to a feather finish.
I would like to know what product you guys would suggest. What say you?

Andrew
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Unread 02-25-2020, 05:51 PM   #2
smifwal
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I use Ardex feather finish for smaller stuff or if I am in a rush and Mapei planipatch for larger areas. Reason being Planipatch is cheaper
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Unread 02-26-2020, 08:57 AM   #3
clax66
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Ardex FF looks good but I am worried about the set up time. Is there a similar product that gives you a bit more time to work with it?
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Unread 02-26-2020, 01:29 PM   #4
clax66
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Since my area is only 7x5 ft could I use a SLC product and just screed it out with a 5 ft straight edge using my high points as the base line for the screed? Maybe this makes no sense?
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Unread 02-26-2020, 01:45 PM   #5
jadnashua
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You could use a screed with SLC. An advantage of working in the winter is things are colder, and that will give you a bit more time.

You'd probably want to talk to the manufacturer of any product you might choose, as the setting time/workability is based on a certain temperature. Depending on the temp of the heated slab, you'd probably lose some time over that stated. Now, if you can shut that zone off for a day or so and then mix the SLC with the coldest water available, you'll gain some time.

SLC doesn't really level itself, but it can get close. It's much harder to do it in a thin layer. You basically need to move it around to wet all areas, or it will tend to bead up sort of like water on a freshly waxed car. Once you've wetted all of the surface, it will get close to flat and level if it is deep enough. TO get to a feather edge, you need to manipulate it manually. Once you've got it close, leave it alone.

Many of them require a primer...if the one you choose does, do not eliminate it and then cover it within the stated window.
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Unread 02-26-2020, 03:59 PM   #6
smifwal
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That is the problem\benefit of any of these product is a short working time. As Jim mentioned use the coldest water possible and that will extended it a bit, but it is not going to give you a hour. You said 35 square feet so I was thinking, how bad could it be? Let start over, How many high spots do you have? Will grinding these down get you in plane with the rest of the floor minus the low spots? Then the next question would be how many low spots do you have? Now you have to determine is, is all that grinding and filling going to take longer than just pouring a SLC. The problem with screeding it is that you need two fixed points to get it flat. As Jim mentioned SLC needs to be moved around to get it to level. This is best achieved with a gauge rake and a smoother and a spiked roller You also need to take in to account what you will end up with at the door way and how you will transition the tile to whatever is on the other side

This is what I use
https://www.tools4flooring.com/ardex...-tool-kit.html

https://www.amazon.com/Vitrex-Spiked...36320449&psc=1
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