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Unread 08-18-2013, 11:39 AM   #1
rjc8807
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Elevated Concrete Deck with Tile in Cold Weather

I am building a large elevated concrete deck off the main floor of my house in the mountains in Colorado. The reason for the concrete is for fire protection. Cracking of concrete in a freeze thaw environment is a problem so my plan is to use a Dietra membrane on top of the concrete. The membrane is supposed to prevent water from leaking through to the concrete and also to provide a flexible barrier between the concrete and the porcelain tile which will be set on top.

I have not been able to find any examples of houses that have this kind of a system. Elevated concrete decks with tile seem to be quite rare in a residential application in a cold winter climate.

I would love to hear from anyone who has experience with this kind of application. What do you think of the Dietra membrane? Are there any tips you can give me that will prevent cracking / popping on the the concrete and tiles either with or without membrane? Are there other products I should be aware of for exterior application?

Thanks for your help!
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Unread 08-18-2013, 11:59 AM   #2
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Hi Ray, Welcome aboard.

While you are waiting for other replies check out the Schluter web site: www.schluter.com

They recommend a different process. There is also a tech contact number there. Elevated concrete is a difficult animal.
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Unread 08-27-2013, 05:11 PM   #3
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Layout and Grouting for Wood Look Porcelain Tile

I am ready to begin a tile project using wood look porcelain tile. The tile we have selected is Ragno Cambridge Oak and it comes in 9X36 (also 6X36 but we thought we'd use the larger one). It's going on an exterior concrete deck and I'm using Dietra underneath.

I was wondering if anyone had tips on laying this type of tile. What kind of layout do you recommend? From looking around, it seems that most are random. What kind of grout width do you suggest? It sounds like 1/16 may be pretty tough so I was thinking of going with 3/32. Am I on the right track?

By the way, I have put the tiles front to front and there is some gap even though the tile is rectified. So I guess they are not totally flat.

Thanks!
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Last edited by rjc8807; 08-27-2013 at 05:12 PM. Reason: wrong word
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Unread 08-27-2013, 06:23 PM   #4
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Stagger the joints randomly, but at least 1/3 stagger.

I've done it most ways....from NO joint (actually looked pretty good) to 1/8" joint. All depends on what the "Mrs." likes.
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Unread 08-27-2013, 06:24 PM   #5
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Ray,

We have a whole thread on plank tiles. Might wanna take a look at all the pics posted there and see what you like and don't like.

I strive for random look, but its hard to hide the repeat since the tiles are all the same size.

Rectified has to do with the squareness of the tiles on the vertical plane and has nothing to do with flatness. Playing cards are rectified, but you can still bend one .....
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Unread 08-27-2013, 08:22 PM   #6
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Thanks for the link to the other thread. I've been looking that over!

Laz, do you have any photos of wood look floors you have done with a 1/8" grout line? Since this is a deck, the floor is not level (sloped for water to drain) and so the larger grout line might work better. Also, the tiles are 36X9 and as you pointed out in the other thread, may be harder to lay. I don't want to lose the look of the wood, though and so I'm not sure about going that wide on the grout.

Thanks!
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Unread 08-27-2013, 10:27 PM   #7
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I would point out that all of those nice plank floors by Ceramictec have 1/8 grout lines on that other thread.

IMO 1/8 is plenty tough on a 36 in tile....

I just did my 6x24 with a 1/8 line, and they look plenty wood-like -- Use a close matched grout color for the best effect .
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Unread 08-27-2013, 11:48 PM   #8
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Planks are a challenge even for pros, so take your time and don't get frustrated if things seem difficult.

My main advice is to make sure that your deck is all one flat plane. It should be sloped, but any deviations from a flat plane will make setting those tiles a nightmare. If the tiles are slightly cupped (as I think you suggest), keep the overlap to 1/3 or less, so that you're not placing the high point and the low point of adjacent tiles next to each other.

for grout, get a good quality sanded grout.
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Unread 10-10-2013, 09:49 AM   #9
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Deciding Which Grout to Use on a Deck

I have been working on a large deck surface for several weeks and am getting dangerously close to grouting. Here are some important points about the deck and environment:

* It is over 600 sf
* The deck is elevated, not on the ground
* The deck is concrete
* I live in Southern Colorado, so freeze / thaw is an issue
* Used Dietra as an underlayment
* Used Ragno Cambridge Oak, which is a porcelain tile that looks like wood. It has a rough surface (simulates wood grain) and each tile is 9X36
* The grout lines are 3/32
* There is some lippage in the tile
* Current temps are low 50's during the day, 30's at night. Deck gets lots of south sun.

I am THINKING of using Laticrete SpectraLOCK Pro Premium Epoxy grout. I have not used an epoxy grout before. I understand that it is difficult to apply and I'm worried about being able to clean it off the rough surface of the tile.

Any advice about the epoxy grout and whether it's a good idea or not would be very helpful. If it is a good idea, any tips about how to get best results?

Thanks
Ray
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Unread 10-10-2013, 10:01 AM   #10
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Ray, 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.

If you'll type spectralock into the Advanced Search feature and ask for Titles you'll find one very substantial thread in the Hangout about that product and many, many comments on how best to use it. Might be your best first stop on that part of your installation.
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Unread 10-10-2013, 07:15 PM   #11
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Thanks for the tip. I'm kind of a novice with how this works. I did find the spectraloc posts - good stuff!
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Unread 10-11-2013, 02:12 PM   #12
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Grouting any textured tile is a challenge, and probably more so with epoxy. It can be a major pain cleaning the residue off when using either.

Controlling water getting under the tile is a major issue when it's in a freeze-thaw situation, especially when it sees southern exposure. I hope you provided proper flashing to prevent moisture from getting under things at the house side, and used Kerdiband on the seams! It doesn't take much ice to crack things from below.

Also, because it's outside and gets sun exposure and likely reflection from the house, careful attention to proper expansion with control joints is probably required. Failure to install those can be a major source of failure.

Sounds like things are almost buttoned up if you're talking about grouting...may be too late if you haven't dealt with the other things mentioned. Good luck!
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Unread 10-14-2013, 03:10 PM   #13
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We have been paying careful attention to the things that you mentioned, jadnashua. We used the kerdi band, kerdi fix anywhere there could be gaps and also expansion joints. The Kerdi band is also applied against the house and down to the floor just in case anything gets behind the wall. Still, I am concerned about this application and the possibility for tile popping and cracking.

The latest issue is the grout. The weather is getting quite cold and we only get a day here and there where it is warm enough to apply it. Someone suggested that we may be able to wait until Spring and let it go through the winter as is. Is this crazy? I am under a deadline to finish the project by the end of October because I am leaving town and if it's not done by then, it will definitely be too cold when I return.
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Unread 10-14-2013, 05:07 PM   #14
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I have been reading this post for days, it seems - lots of good information.

I am a little confused about where to use grout vs. caulking. Most of the discussion seems to be focused on showers. I am doing an exterior elevated concrete deck that has been prepped with Dietra and then tile on top. It's a cold weather climate and I have expansion joints. I was planning to use spectraloc grout in the tile joints and latasil caulking up against the house, around the deck posts and in the expansion joints. I was also thinking that perhaps I should use a row of latasil all across the deck in the tile joints in place of grout to add another effective expansion joint. I really don't want to have popping tiles!

Any ideas?

Thanks,
Ray
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Unread 10-14-2013, 05:10 PM   #15
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Read pages 20-22 There are notes about exterior joints too.
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