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Unread 08-28-2007, 01:49 PM   #1
BlueCanyon
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Warmly Yours and Ditra on Concrete

Hi. I've gotten the fat-skinny from Warmly Yours, and want to make sure that the tile experts at John Bridge Forum don't have any conflicting advice.

We have a concrete slab, are laying Warmly Yours, Ditra, and 13" porcelain tiles. Here is the order that I see things happening, from the top down:

13" Porcelain Tile
Unmodified thinset - Premium Plus with regular tile trowel
Ditra
Modified thinset - Versabond with regular ditra trowel
Modified thinset - Flat side of trowel 1/8" thick embedding mats. Let dry overnight.
Warmly Yours Mats glued to concrete slab
Clean Concrete Slab

One question: There are areas that won't have the heat mats, such as around toilet and in closet. What is the recommended procedure for accommodating that 1/8" extra thickness that the Warmly Yours Mat will bring to the rest of the room? Should we trowel on a 1/8" coat of thinset on these bare spots at the same time we are embedding Warmly Yours? If so, do we use a notched trowel or flat edge of trowel?

Many thanks, as always!

Mary Ann
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Unread 08-28-2007, 08:28 PM   #2
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Hi Mary Ann, you can float it with thinset or you can use SLC to pour over the whole floor area that you are doing.
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Unread 08-29-2007, 12:49 AM   #3
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They want the mat under the Ditra? I assumed they always want it just under the tile.
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Unread 08-29-2007, 06:41 AM   #4
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Yes Trask, the heat mat goes under the Ditra.
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Unread 08-29-2007, 08:48 AM   #5
BlueCanyon
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Thanks. Sounds like I've got the process right - at least in my head.

On the areas of the floor that won't have the warmly yours mat, should we just trowel on a layer of thinset using maybe a 1/4 x 3/8" square notch trowel to build it up to the same height? (The ditra would then go on top of the entire area.)

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Unread 08-30-2007, 08:31 AM   #6
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Just a gentle bump. I need help on how to handle the non-heating mat floor height. Thanks - Mary Ann
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Unread 08-30-2007, 07:06 PM   #7
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I did the slab-warmly yours-ditra-tile like you are planning. Make sure that you use plenty of thinset underneath the ditra! Between the matting of the WY and the dimples of the ditra, it is easy to leave air pockets, and the mats don't work so good with air.

As far as the areas that didn't have the WY (next to the toilet, underneath the cabinets), I just made the thinset a little thicker. Maybe there is a better way to do it, but it came out fine. I put the WY and ditra down one right after the other, so I just put the thicker thinset down at the same time with a 1/4 notched trowel. I would not use a notched trowel on the non-WY area and let it dry - it would be super bumpy. You could try a flat edge (and let it dry), but it might be difficult to make it level and smooth. (I'm not sure if you meant to let it dry or not)

You were probably going to do this anyway, but just in case:
- Cut and lay out all your ditra before you start thinsetting it down.
- Be very careful with the trowel when putting thinset on top of the WY.
- We used a glue gun on the WY, and it worked well.

I'm no pro, but I hope this helps
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Unread 08-31-2007, 08:54 AM   #8
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Ed, thanks for the great info.

We are going to try and trowel very very loose thinset on the WY mat - till the WY grid is just barely showing through - with the flat side of the trowel, and let that dry. Then come back the next day and lay the ditra with fresh thinset and notched trowel like normal. Your point about getting the WY layer of thinset flat is a good one. We will have to be very aware of that. And thanks for the tip on the air pockets as well.

I'm originally from Denton and was just back there visiting in mid August when it was 105 degrees and super humid every day. YIKES!!!!!

Mary Ann
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Unread 08-31-2007, 09:14 AM   #9
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I wonder what the guys that make Ditra would think about filling in the underneath dimples. I believe that will counteract the ability of the Ditra to be effective in movement isolation because it's the air gap that I believe that is the reason it works but I may be wrong, I think I read this somewhere. Correct me if I'm wrong please.

I'm doing the same thing in my bathroom floor and would like to know more about this process.

Bob
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Unread 08-31-2007, 11:40 AM   #10
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Hi Bob.
I may not be totally understanding what you're asking, but the grid on the ditra goes facing up. I'm going to thinset the flat bottom of the ditra to my WY skim coated thinset. Then I'll probably wait a day, although I don't have to, and come back and fill the ditra grid and lay the tile all in one fail swoop.

At the same time, I think that many pros on this forum fill the ditra holes up with thinset and come back the next day and lay the tile. Prefilling the ditra holes lets you snap chalk lines, which don't stick to the plain ditra. And my impression is that doing so doesn't affect the effectiveness of the ditra. I'm sure they'll correct me if I've got that wrong.

Mary Ann
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Unread 08-31-2007, 11:43 AM   #11
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It's a balmy 88 degrees right now.
Maybe I'm worried about nothing, but I've gotten very sensitive to whatever I'm tiling on not being flat and even. If you are going to let the thinset on the WY dry, be aware that the ditra is not going to automatically hide any bumps or uneven places in the dried thinset. I'm embarrassed to admit here that I've left a to-be-tiled surface imperfect because I think I can fix it later with thicker or thinner thinset (I hope John doesn't see this). Regretted it every time.
Putting the Ditra down when thinsetting the WY is not that big of a deal if your Ditra is already been cut to fit - and you are ready to tile when it dries!

Just my humble DIYer opinion.

hmmm, filling the ditra dimples first.....d'oh!
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Unread 08-31-2007, 11:50 AM   #12
BlueCanyon
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Ed,
Point taken. I'll discuss it with my tile guy - he's the guy I sleep with.

After tiling 800 feet of non-flat surface, we too are very sensitive about the issues of tiling on a non-flat floor. He was just worried about hooking the WY mat with the trowel teeth.

We were also worried about getting enough thinset in our thinset layers to meet the 3/8" minimum thinset thickness required by WY.

Your input is much appreciated. Thanks.
Mary Ann
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Unread 08-31-2007, 01:43 PM   #13
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Related Question

I am doing a very similar project but using ThermoTile mats instead of WY. Instead of thinset for the first layer, what about using self-leveling mortar. ThermoTile suggested this. My major concern is that I have about 1000 sq. ft. on a slab (no expansion joints on the slab) to cover - I would likely have to temporarily frame up a section to pour the SLM. - then getting the different "Sections" level might be difficult.

Also, I didn't realize versabond was necessary on top of the first layer of thinset in the original post (as opposed to unmodified thinset with the ditra). Is the versabond necessary?
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Unread 08-31-2007, 02:25 PM   #14
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Ditra Voids

Mary Ann, your correct on the top of the Dritra, filling in the voids is not a problem with that.

However, the bottom of the Ditra will have voids too, the opposite of the top, small square chambers if you will. These "chambers" are typically not filled when you lay the Ditra down on a thin layer of thin set. There is a layer of felt that covers the grids on the bottom creating air pockets inside the Ditra. This is how Ditra works I believe and you can't get thin set in there anyway without removing the felt that covers the grid pattern on the bottom (don't do this!).

They say that these "air pockets" affect the heat transfer only a very small degree and basically results in a slightly slower warm up time, after that time it does not impair the heat transfer ability once warmed up.

Here's the installation handbook:
http://www.schluter.com/media/brochu...ra_us_2007.pdf

Hope this helps.

Bob
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Last edited by simpsonb; 08-31-2007 at 02:32 PM.
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Unread 08-31-2007, 04:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Point taken. I'll discuss it with my tile guy - he's the guy I sleep with.
Well, ok - just don't tell your husband.

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