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Unread 08-10-2011, 10:39 PM   #1
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garage floor cracks....

I'm primarily a cabinet-maker, and that takes me into other trades out of neccesity. Been at it for a number of years, however, and like many other trades, tile-setting becomes just another part of the scenario. I feel that I'm reasonably competent,

The current job involves pimping a garage for long-term clients.

Gotta put down epoxy garage coating on the floor and of course it's got cracks. Largest is 1/4"

Do the internet search....no joy. Talk to may concrete guys, not convincing enuf. One guy did however balk at Mapei epoxy......"that stuff will make the crack structural, and the crack will reappear a few inches away"

So I'm thinkin grind out the cracks, use the acid etch for the epoxy, then use some PM thinset, possibly Keisel to fill the cracks, but then they may just crack again.WTF it's a (heated) garage, but then I'm thinking of scouring out enuf space with the diamond grinder to accomodate a crack isolation membrane. Did some tests with the thinset, and although it does shrink back, it does fill the gaps

The paint supplier- a commercial one- ain't got no idea about substrate repair methodology.

Anybody with any experience, particularly the "seen it years later" variety in the cold CDN climate?

couple of those cracks pass from the heated section to the edge of the garage slab, which is exposed to the -30F wintertime temp. We want em filled and kept dry!!!

Not yer normal tile forum query to be sure...

Eric in Calgary
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Unread 08-10-2011, 11:10 PM   #2
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Welcome, Eric.

Have you checked to see if any of these cracks have a vertical displacement from one side to the other? Even the tiniest bit?

If they have any at all, you're not gonna get anything to fill the cracks successfully such that they don't return. Ain't gonna happen.

If there is absolutely no vertical displacement, and were talking thousandths of an inch here, you may be able to fill the cracks and have them stay mostly filled for a while. But you'll still get cracking beside your filler.

The guy who told you what would happen with the epoxy repair knew whereof he spoke. Some epoxy repair materials, as claimed in their advertising, are stronger in tensile strength than the concrete. Which means the crack will simple reappear somewhere other than the epoxy. In my experience it's immediately adjacent to the epoxy patch or with half an inch at most.

There are cementitious patching materials avialable to effectively fill the cracks and smooth the surface. Thinset mortars used for tiling do not fit into that category.

You could then paint the floor, but you'd have no guarantee at all the cracks wouldn't reappear very soon.

Might wanna consider staining the concrete instead of painting and call those cracks "character." Done pretty regularly down this way.

My opinion; worth price charged.

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