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Unread 08-22-2019, 10:57 AM   #1
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Picky Homeowner or Legitimate Concerns

We are in new construction with 9 by 36 ceramic tiles throughout the house. Our first problem was that the grout was different colors due to efflorescence. Some of it was almost white and some was dark. We hired someone to apply colored sealer to the grout so it would all be one color and I’m not so sure we should have had to pay for that.

Basically, we have what I feel is excessive lippage. We can’t even pull out a chair without it getting stuck on a tile. Also, our grout lines vary in width a lot. The flooring company came out and said everything was within normal tolerance.

Is this us being too picky? I’ve attached some pics. Thanks in advance.
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Unread 08-22-2019, 12:18 PM   #2
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Welcome, Ami.

Determining acceptable lippage in a tile installation is not always as easy as you might think. The ceramic tile industry standard for your floor tiles depends to some extent upon your joint width and I'm not sure just what you have there. I'm guessing you're showing a scale for 1/2" and indicating that your joints might be right on the border between Less than 1/4" and 1/4" or greater.

The ANSI standard for less than 1/4" joints would be a maximum of 1/32nd of an inch in addition to the inherent warpage of tile manufactured in accordance with ANSI A137.1 If your joints are 1/4" or greater, the maximum would be 1/16th of an inch.

My opinion; worth price charged.

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Unread 08-22-2019, 03:10 PM   #3
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While this is NOT an approved method of determining if it is acceptable, it is what I use.

How much did it all cost? If you went with the cheapest bid and cost was the motivating factor, looks about right. If you paid good money and expected good work, it does not look right.
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Unread 08-22-2019, 07:19 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum, Ami!

Mike, what if the cheapest bid was twice what you charge? I know it feels good and it's awfully convenient to say things like that. But if we're going to help Ami, it's better to use means of reasoned argument to help her through her questions.

Ami, what is the measurement of difference in the grout width? And if you were to hold a stack of spare tile up on edge like a deck of cards, would all the tile be of the same width (use a straightedge over the top)?

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Unread 08-23-2019, 05:58 AM   #5
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Ami, can you post any photos showing a full room or at least several tiles in a row? I'm curious about the pattern in which the tiles were set.
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Unread 08-23-2019, 10:25 AM   #6
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Are there going to be baseboards along the wall? The person who caulked the wall to tile joint may be different than the tile person?. If that caulked joint is going to show it's pretty sad that the guy wiped it into the grout line. Not sure about the corner in the powder room will that scrape up or vacuum up I can't believe a man would leave such a mess up the wall and into the corner unless there's baseboards coming
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Unread 08-24-2019, 12:36 PM   #7
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When it comes to the plank tiles there really isn't a simple answer to "how much lippage is acceptable?".

Cx, in post 2, gives you the formula to figure it out. A little bit simpler, but less accurate, way of looking at it is that lippage can be credit card thick plus the amount of curvature in the tiles.

So if you have two extra tiles you could put them face-to-face or back-to-back and see how much they curve.

Also relevant is Dan's comment in post 5 about the pattern. How much are the tiles offset? That matters too.
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