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Unread 11-16-2013, 09:08 PM   #1
rpell87
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Mastic issue on bathroom floor tile

Hi All,

I'm new to the forum, here with a mastic issue. I have gathered from a search of the forum that using a product such as AcrylPro (which is what I have used) may not be ideal, but in a non-shower situation some experienced people on here say it "should be OK".

I am laying marble mosaic tile on a small bathroom floor. The tiles are 1/2" x 4" and are 3/8" thick. The tiles came in 12 x 12" mats. I laid the tile on 1-1/4" of plywood. I waited the minimum 24 hrs (28, actually) after laying the last tile before setting foot on it to start grouting (temperature and humidity were not an issue). I got about a third of the way across the room and noticed some of the mastic was squeezing up through the tile joints where I had been kneeling, and obviously wasn't set yet. I poked a couple of the tiles in that area and could move them slightly.

I stopped grouting at that point and am now wondering how screwed I am. Are the tiles not going to set properly now that I have been walking/kneeling on them before the mastic was set? Should I rip them all up before is gets any harder? (I have seen comments that tiles laid with mastic can be soaked, cleaned off and used again, but with tiles this small it would be a real pain to clean mastic from in between them).

(The picture shows the tile after I scraped the oozing mastic from between the tiles, center of picture)

Any advice?

Thanks!
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Unread 11-16-2013, 09:18 PM   #2
cx
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Welcome, Ryan.

Even those of us who will tell you organic adhesives (mastic) have their place will tell you it's not a good idea to use those products with natural stone at all and many of us would tell you it's not a good idea to use it for floor installations.

That said, all you can reasonably do at this point is wait a few days and see if your situation improves sufficiently for you to be happy with the floor.

The part that has been grouted may take a week or more to dry sufficiently, depending somewhat on what kind of grout was used.

You set these tiles directly on the plywood subfloor?

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 09:20 PM   #3
Davy
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Two things concern me. The mastic you mentioned and the setting right to the plywood. I think you have a slim chance that this floor will be long lasting. The mastic will eventually set up but I have no idea how long it will take.

You say it's a small bathroom floor. You can go ahead and rip it up and buy more tiles. Or, you can let it dry longer, grout it and cross your fingers. Then rip it out if you ever have any problems. Cleaning such small tiles would be a very time consuming job.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 10:11 PM   #4
rpell87
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Yes, the mastic was applied directly on the plywood subfloor.

If I do end up removing the tiles and re-laying them using a proper thinset mortar, is there any issue with applying the thinset directly on plywood?
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Unread 11-16-2013, 10:27 PM   #5
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Much of that depends upon your joist spacing and how you arrived at that 1 1/4" of plywood subflooring, Ryan. The requirements are pretty specific.

We generally recommend against tiling directly to plywood subflooring, but it is an acceptable method if done correctly. We generally recommend the use of a CBU or tiling membrane as your substrate.

We generally recommend against use of organic adhesive for setting floor tiles, too, but again it is an acceptable method if done correctly.

I don't think you've got a snowball's chance of taking up those little stones and getting them clean enough to re-set with an appropriate thinset mortar, but I suppose it's possible. You will, of course, hafta set then as individual pieces the second time around.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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