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Old 10-30-2018, 04:52 PM   #1
Rweiser
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Level a garage floor

Greetings all.

I have a question about the best way to level a sloping garage floor. I recently tore down the wall between my garage and my family room to make the family room bigger(garage was never used for anything but storage anyways). I didnít realize until after I removed the wall the garage floor sloped towards the old garage door there is a height difference of almost 2Ē. My question is what is the best way to level the floor to match the rest of the room? Both rooms are on a slab. One person is telling me to lay down furring strips or ripped 2x4s onto the concrete with foam insulation and then backer board and maybe finish up with some SLC. Somebody else told me not to do that because the wood could rot or flex and crack the tile or mortar that I plan on laying down on top of it. He suggested laying down cement board instead and then using SLC on that to finish it. Everything Iím reading online says not to use cement board on cement. I guess my question is who is right or is there a better way to do it. Thanks for any help anybody can give.
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Old 10-30-2018, 05:11 PM   #2
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You can build it up level with deck mud, 5 parts sand to 1 part Portland cement mixed to the consistency of damp beach sand.
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Old 10-30-2018, 05:16 PM   #3
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Would you need to build up the entire floor? If so, how much on the shallow end, and how much on the deep end. You mentioned 2", but didn't specify if that was the high or low point.
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Old 10-30-2018, 05:34 PM   #4
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the only part of the floor that need to be built up is about half of the garage floor it starts level with the room at the far end than about half way it starts to slope and finish’s almost 2 inches below the rest of the floor. I would guess about 100-150 sq ft
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Old 10-30-2018, 08:33 PM   #5
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So you are going to tile your garage floor for sure? Most slc’s are not finished surfaces. So you’ll need to have something on top. What kind of tile in mind?
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Old 10-30-2018, 09:40 PM   #6
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Round these parts materials and labor to mud that floor runs around $6 per sf. Considering the labor and tonnage of materials, its money well spent.
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Old 10-31-2018, 04:19 AM   #7
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Iíve already purchased the tile. Most of the floor is good to go for tile just the old garage is the issue.
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:04 AM   #8
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I always prefer a dry pack, but since you’ve stated you’ll only need to do half of it (which I find odd) it’s not recommended to use deck mud to a feather edge (which I do on slab) An SLC would be expensive for that amount, but I’ve seen guys use backer board as filler to reduce the amount of slc poured... but I haven’t tried that method myself and couldn’t tell you the viability of it.

Some pictures of your current situation would help make a more accurate assessment.
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:46 AM   #9
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You could set a ledger board where the depth would reach 3/4", and mud from that point on out to the 2" depth. Bond the mud to the slab with a slurry of thinset mortar.

Then remove the board and use a self-leveling compound for the rest of it from 3/4" up to 0.
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Old 10-31-2018, 02:12 PM   #10
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Recently I had to mud up part of a patio and I did it like Kevin mentioned. I used hot glue to hold down a 1/2 inch thick wood strip and mudded to it with bonded dry pack. Pulled the stick the next day and finished the thin area with SLC.
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Old 10-31-2018, 02:52 PM   #11
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Many of the slcs allow you to use pea gravel to help fill in the deep areas, which can considerably decrease your costs for the fairly expensive slc material itself. That would be the quickest way to do it, but a mudbed is definitely the least expensive method that will give you a good job. There's a learning curve with both materials.

Note, if there's no insulation or a moisture barrier underneath the slab in the garage area, the floor in that room could end up quite cool. That might be an issue. Floor warming would be a nice touch, but electricity costs can be an issue. Schluter has a version of Ditra that has an extra thick fleece layer that give a thermal break for your tile, which could definitely help.
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Old 10-31-2018, 07:02 PM   #12
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1 bag of SLC will cover 6 sq ft at 1 inch thick which is what you would average. So, it'll take 25 bags to cover 150 sq ft. I haven't bought any SLC in a long time, back then it was about 30 bucks a bag. That's 750 bucks plus tax.

I'd much rather mud it. The materials would be much cheaper and I'd rather not be rushed with SLC. Being faster isn't always better. The Custom SLC's have a 1 1/2 thickness limit per pour. A second could be added.
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Old 10-31-2018, 08:10 PM   #13
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Most SLC can be used with washed, pea gravel, which can significantly decrease the amount of SLC you need. Some can easily go far deeper than you need in one pour.

No question, though, a mud bed is far cheaper and can make as good or better result.

It's easier to pour slc in place than pack mud.
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Old 11-02-2018, 01:25 PM   #14
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Thanks for your responses after reading them all I decided to go with the dry pack. Didnít seem like anybody endorsed the ideas of wood or cement board so I took that as a bad idea and not something that should be done. When I lay the dry pack down do I need to tamp it down or just run a screed board over it. It seem pretty loose right now.
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Old 11-02-2018, 01:45 PM   #15
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pack it, and pack it well. Pack it as you lay it. the more packing the better.
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