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Old 05-06-2019, 06:23 PM   #1
foothill999
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Tiling over exposed aggregate concrete

We have a 300sq ft and its currently exposed aggregate in pretty good shape. It consist of 8 to 10 6x6 squares that had 4x2 wood in the joints. We removed those and are in progress of filling joints with concrete. We also had one small area that is lower then the rest whi h we plan on filling with self leveling cement. We want to install 12x24 porcelain tiles over the patio. I also plan on power washing it and using a poly modified thinset from lowes.

Any recommendation on making sure we get a good bond. Will making sure it clean and level be enought?
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:38 PM   #2
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Hi Sandra. Filling the cracks with concrete isn't going to tie the pads together. I'm afraid you'll have tiles cracking in no time.
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:50 PM   #3
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Wellcome back, Sandra.

Gotta agree with Davy on that one. I would expect the "no time" to be measured in days and doubt it would be a large number.

Unless, of course, you're willing to limit your tile layout to a pattern of 6x6-foot squares with sufficient movement accommodation joints between squares and I don't think that's what you had in mind.

Power washing may be sufficient to allow thinset mortar to bond, but without seeing just how rough, or not rough, your existing surface is I'd hesitate to say it's OK.

Is any portion of that current installation sloped for drainage?

Hate to rain on your California sunshine, but that's the way I see it.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:25 PM   #4
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Ohhhh noooo

I had no idea. Is there anyway to make tile work? Besides the 6x6 square idea. Is there anything else we can fill the cracks with? Any ideas on how to make it work are greatly appreciated. The current patio is slightly sloped and drains away from the house and to the side.
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:35 PM   #5
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Ideas

Our plan was to tile on top of the cement and leave expansion gaps every 8ft with a flexible caulking instead of grout in those gaps. Sounds like we got ourself into a mess....
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:00 PM   #6
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One more thing

Does it help any.... each pad is tied to the next with rebar it appears but only in 1 spot on each pad going to the next. The patio is also over 30 years old and hopefully all settled for the most part.... maybe i am missing the whole problem, super newby in bit of of panic.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:16 PM   #7
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Sandra, I'm sure the rebar helps a little but even if there were a lot more, I think there would be too much movement for me to take a chance on it.

Maybe some type of paver over a sand bed. Something that floats and isn't bonded to the concrete.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:54 PM   #8
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How much height addition can you accept? Maybe an unbonded mudbed?
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:45 AM   #9
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Mud bed

Not much in height since we planned for tile and thinset when we built the bbq kitchen. Maybe an inch to play with before it would get complicated. I will ask my carpenters about the mudbed option..if its not going to work maybe we will give up the tile and go with the deck tiles instead. I appreciate the advice.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:15 AM   #10
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You can't do a bonded mudbed since the substrate is not continuous. An unbonded one would need to be in the order of 2"+ thick with metal reinforcement 1/2-way through the middle to work. Thinner, and it just isn't strong enough on its own when it's essentially floating.
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Old 05-07-2019, 11:36 AM   #11
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Sandra, the actual requirement for the unbonded, reinforced mortar bed Jim is suggesting is that a cleavage membrane be laid over the existing substrate and a minimum of 1 1/4" of deck mud, with welded wire reinforcing mesh in the vertical center, be placed on top of it.

Generally one of the best possible tile substrates, it still might not guard against cracking of the tile surface if you have independent vertical movement between those separate sections of concrete you have. As Davy pointed out, the minimal rebar connections you have may help in that regard, but they're not enough to prevent independent movement of those sections.

Keep in mind when we speak of movement in ceramic tile installation terms, we're not talking about the components packing their little suitcases and moving across town, we're speaking of some very small movements that ceramic tile installations just don't tolerate well.

If your risk tolerance for a failed tile installation is very high, you might wanna give that a try, though.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:27 PM   #12
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how about a pedestal system?
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:35 AM   #13
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Ditra

Would it help at all and give our tile a better chance if we used ditra over the cement prior to tile?
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:51 AM   #14
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You're speaking of Ditra over your existing concrete sections that you've filled between with mortar of some sort, Sandra?
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Old 05-15-2019, 01:03 PM   #15
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Yes

Yes if we first laid ditra over the entire surface and then tile. Would that help? If not we may have to forgo tile and maybe consider a wood like deck tile instead.
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