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Unread 09-15-2022, 09:19 AM   #1
JimNH
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New Construction Slab - Tiling questions

Morning all,

We're just starting a new build in Northern NH, and I have a few questions regarding tiling to a slab on grade (will have hyd. radiant installed). For the main floor, we have LVP, but the mudroom and 2 baths will be tile. I'll likely be back here as we move ahead, seeking advice but to start, here is what I'm scratching my head about:

1. Mudroom:
a. We just received the quote from the builder's recommended installer. The mudroom is 168 sq ft, as shown on the plan, and we have selected a 12x24 ceramic tile that comes 13.78/sq ft per carton. In the pricing quote, they list 192.92 (14 cartons). Assuming they read the plan, can I assume they are just buying an extra to be safe (168 would need 12.19 cartons, so 13). That makes sense I suppose. But, all the labor and misc. supplies costs are based on that inflated area, so...is that just how it's done? It's not a huge deal, just curious.
b. They list 15 sheets of "Cement Board or Fiberrock" (at about $900 for labor and materials). From what I've read over the years on here, that doesn't seem like a recommended approach to tiling on a concrete slab. Should I ask them to change to an uncoupling layer (ditra-type) or liquid applied anti-fracture membrane?
c. We would like to keep the transitions as smooth as possible, (we have a wheelchair user in the house, and we're building as accessible/universal as we can). Any thoughts on aligning planes between the LVP (0.24" thick) and the tile surfaces (mudroom and baths)?

We're just at the starting the footing work, but I'd like to get an idea which was to go before we progress to far to turn back.

Thanks in advance,
Jim
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Unread 09-15-2022, 12:23 PM   #2
Jim Farrell Tiler
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its done all the time here with no issues
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Unread 09-15-2022, 01:31 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply, Jim Farrell Tiler. Assuming you mean the cement board over the concrete slab is done all the time there, correct? Just not sure what purpose it serves. Why not just thinset to the slab? Thanks again,
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Unread 09-15-2022, 03:39 PM   #4
jadnashua
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I don't know of any cbu that lists installation over a concrete slab as a suitable substrate.

The only panel I've seen that can be used on a slab is WediBoard, but there may be others out there now. That's not something you'd want over hydronic heating, though.
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Unread 09-15-2022, 04:47 PM   #5
Davy
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Same here. I'd never use CBU over a concrete slab. We usually grind the slab down to raw concrete, vacuum and mop it clean. Then use an anti-fracture membrane over it like Mapei's Auqa Defense, Custom's Redgard or Laticrete's Hydro Ban. The key with the membrane is getting it thick enough. Getting a thickness gauge is a good idea.

You usually want 10-15% extra tile in most cases. But the labor I always base on the actual footage.
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Unread 09-15-2022, 05:00 PM   #6
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Thanks guys. I guess that's what I was immediately concerned with. I do NOT have a problem paying good $ for quality work, but I have a hard time when even I can instantly see problems with someone's quote. Either they didn't care to take the time to think it through, or they just don't know enough about their own trade. In either case, I'll be having a conversation about this with the GC. Really appreciate the guidance.
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Unread 09-16-2022, 05:28 AM   #7
JimNH
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Good morning,

Are any/all of the liquid products listed above related for use with in-floor heating (Hydronic in the slab)? Reading the TDS for the HydroBan, I didn't see any mention of it, for or against.
Reading the TTDS for RedGard, it states to contact Technical Services for use over floor heating systems. (So I will, obviously)

Thanks,
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Unread 09-16-2022, 04:24 PM   #8
Davy
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That's probably a good idea, Jim. I live in Texas and we try to cool our floors most of the year. Plus, I was wrong once.
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Unread 09-17-2022, 09:59 PM   #9
Jim Farrell Tiler
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we tile straight to the concrete here not onto cement sheeting on a slab
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Unread 09-18-2022, 06:00 AM   #10
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Hi Jim, thanks for clarifying. That makes sense to me!
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Unread 09-18-2022, 04:07 PM   #11
jadnashua
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People tend to say that there are two types of concrete slabs...cracked ones, or ones that are waiting to crack. A crack isolation layer is good insurance and required if there are already cracks.

Probably not an issue, but you need to wait at least 28-days to tile on a green slab unless you use something like Ditra that allows it to breath and dry. By the time you get to tiling in a new house, that's almost never an issue as it's been longer than that.
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Unread 09-19-2022, 06:13 AM   #12
JimNH
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Thanks Jim. Yes, I doubt waiting 28 days will be an issue, but I'll certainly keep it in mind as we progress. Appreciate the thoughts.
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