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Unread 09-02-2020, 02:11 PM   #1
duke96
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Where do I start?

I ordered porcelain tile with installation from lowes in July and as of now (Sept. 2) they still haven't installed it. I've called 4 times and the installer has not called me back. So now I'm wanting to install myself but have a question about where to find the center. The tile will go from my front door, down hallway to the kitchen. The biggest room will be the kitchen is that where I should find the starting point?
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Unread 09-02-2020, 02:57 PM   #2
Lazarus
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I would probably start at the doorway, but I can't see your floor from here.....
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Unread 09-02-2020, 03:34 PM   #3
jadnashua
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A couple of other things to consider:
- the brick like layout you show may not work with the tile involved. The industry guidelines is to have a 30% max overlap, not a 50% one. It MIGHT work, but it depends on the tile being VERY flat to work at 50%, so you must check that first...place two tiles (at least) front to front and see if they rock or are in full contact. A typical tile has some bow to it, and you'll get excessive lippage when set at 50%.
- A large area like you're dealing with begs for movement accommodation joints at a minimum, between rooms. This could be a grout-colored caulk, or an engineered expansion joint (my preference).
- Don't try to make a really small grout joint...industry calls for at least 3x the difference between the min/max of the tile sizes involved.
- With a large tile like you indicate, industry calls for the floor to be VERY flat PRIOR to trying to install the tile...prep is everything. Don't' try to do it during tile setting. On a large area like that, any deviations in flatness will distort the reflections, and highlight them.

You want to avoid lots of slivers (small tiles) in the design. That can get messy when going through many rooms, especially when they are not rectangular. When I did my downstairs, I did things on the diagonal to sort of break things up and flow between areas smoother. It's harder, but something to consider.
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Last edited by jadnashua; 09-02-2020 at 07:08 PM. Reason: typo on min grout size specification...fixed to 3x
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Unread 09-02-2020, 05:55 PM   #4
duke96
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Wow a lot to consider... thanks Jim
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Unread 09-18-2020, 01:48 PM   #5
duke96
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Tile over old mortar?

I'm preparing my floor to install ceramic tile. I removed old ceramic and was wondering if I need to remove all the old mortar? The old tile/mortar was over subfloor and I'm putting backerboard down over sub floor for new ceramic.

Thanks!
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Unread 09-18-2020, 02:19 PM   #6
cx
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Duke, it'll help if you'll keep all your project questions on one thread so folks can see what you're working on and what's been previously asked and answered.

Not enough information to really make an assessment.

1. First, have you evaluated your joist structure to see if you qualify for a ceramic tile installation?

2. Do you know what the subfloor consists of?

3. How thick and of what consistency is this "old mortar" you're asking about? Is it a thick (at least 3/4") layer, or are we talking about previous tile having been bonded directly to a wood framed subfloor?

Photos are often helpful.

Let's start with that.
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Unread 09-18-2020, 02:54 PM   #7
duke96
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1. Yes

2. 3/4in. Plywood and 1/4 in underlayment

3. The old mortar is not consistent all over, some of it came up with the old tiles. The mortar left on floor is less than 1/8in thick
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Unread 09-18-2020, 05:54 PM   #8
smifwal
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That looks like Luan that your tile was set on, that needs to come out before you put down your backer board
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Unread 09-18-2020, 06:46 PM   #9
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Also does not appear to be a plywood edge I see under the Lauan in the photo, Shawn, or is it just me?

Are we sure about the composition of that subfloor, Duke?
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Unread 09-18-2020, 07:22 PM   #10
smifwal
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Looks like osb from here... I didn't zoom, just called out the obvious. Duke should take that Lauan out and get us a pic of the subfloor.

(Edit) that subfloor could be MDF also. I was having a brain fart yesterday and couldn't think of what else it could be.
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Last edited by smifwal; 09-19-2020 at 04:36 AM.
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Unread 09-18-2020, 08:16 PM   #11
Davy
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Hi Duke. Once you figure out the subfloor, sometimes it's best to start the tile layout up against carpet in a doorway or cased opening. Another place we like to start the layout is at a step down that might involve a tile riser.
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