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Unread 02-17-2012, 11:14 AM   #1
ox78
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Grout hairline cracks!!

Im newby here to the forums. I was reading your post on your situation. Im experiencing the same problem. Only I have a few spots throughout the installation that are cracking. Nothing consistent. I used tec sanded grout and is on a double layer floor. First layer is 3/4" t&g ply and second is a 5/8" osb with exposure 1 rating up. (as specified from shulter tech support.) THere is perimeter spacing and is laid on ditra. The floor joists are trusses which are on 19.2 spacing and biggest span now is 12 feet. Before installation we installed beams cause joists were spanned way too far. Poorly constructed home. The home is nearly 35 years old from best guess of talking to people in the community. It has been a year and cracking seams to be the same just hairline cracks and hairline seperations from the tile. The customer wants to rip up the floor. I feel this is a drastic move and is unnesscesry. Any tips beside regrouting the entire floor. Which is less drastic than ripping up great looking floor.
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Unread 02-17-2012, 11:17 AM   #2
ox78
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Grout hairline cracks!!

Im newby here to the forums. I only have a few spots throughout the installation that are cracking. Nothing consistent. I used tec sanded grout and is on a double layer floor. First layer is 3/4" t&g ply and second is a 5/8" osb with exposure 1 rating up. (as specified from shulter tech support.) THere is perimeter spacing and is laid on ditra. The floor joists are trusses which are on 19.2 spacing and biggest span now is 12 feet. Before installation we installed beams cause joists were spanned way too far. Poorly constructed home. The home is nearly 35 years old from best guess of talking to people in the community. It has been a year and cracking seams to be the same just hairline cracks and hairline seperations from the tile. The customer wants to rip up the floor. I feel this is a drastic move and is unnesscesry. Any tips beside regrouting the entire floor. Which is less drastic than ripping up great looking floor.
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Unread 02-17-2012, 04:44 PM   #3
jadnashua
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How big is the longest run of tile? Could it be that it needs an expansion joint? Color-matched grout would provide that. Are there lots of windows?

Did you offset the seams of the second layer from the first?

Trusses usually require help from the manufacturer to determine their strength. How was the deflection determined, and how was a new beam installed? Are there any gaps between the new beam and the supports or the bottoms of the trusses?
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Unread 02-17-2012, 05:15 PM   #4
mpellegrino77
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don't jump the gun!

I'd hate to say it online,but it is my personal opinion,Tech grout is the most unconsistant grout i've used ever...There is a grout that comes in tubes,like caulk,match the color and use over the cracks, it's got more flex and is better than ripping out...gd-luck with tech...LATICRETE.
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Unread 02-17-2012, 05:27 PM   #5
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Hi Doug, Welcome aboard.

I wonder if it has something to do with placing beams under trusses. I'm no engineer, but I don't think that is normally done.

No, I don't have any suggestions. You're obviously getting movement of some sort. Maybe someone else has an idea, though. Stick around.
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Unread 02-17-2012, 05:32 PM   #6
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Welocme, Doug.

It'll help prevent confusion and duplication of efforts if you'll ask your questions in only one place. Thanks.
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Unread 02-17-2012, 05:43 PM   #7
mpellegrino77
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hair line cracks

Im telling you,I know all about movement in fllors, if your sub-floor,and tile was installed properly,and there is hairline cracks,not cracks 1/16th ", it's the product, If you know you didn't trowel correctly, then you know why...
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Unread 02-17-2012, 11:24 PM   #8
Tool Guy - Kg
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Hi Doug,

If you want to check your grout for defects, you'd need to contact Tec and give them the control number on the bag (perhaps there's a partial bad in the customer's house?). Tec keeps a sample of every batch of everything they manufacture and keep it stored for just such inquiries. And they will investigate every claim seriously. All you have to do is call to start the process. I have to tell you, though, that the odds of the grout being defective is rather low. It's certainly possible, but not probable.

Assuming the grout was not mixed too loose (makes for weak grout) or that there is a manufacturer's defect: Cracking occurs from excessive movement. If that's the case, regrouting will only temporarily hide the problem. So let's talk about that floor. The first possible problem I can think of is an inadequate bond in the tile assembly somewhere below the tile and that makes me ask these first few questions:
1) Does the tile sound hollow in any of the areas adjacent to the cracking when knocked on with a wooden broom handle?
2) Which mortar (please be specific) did you use to install the Ditra with and what size trowel was used?
3) Which mortar (again, please be specific) did you use to install the tile with and what size trowel was used?
4) Did you "burn" a coat of thinset onto the backs of the tile with the flat side of the trowel?
5) What kind of tile was installed (ceramic, porcelain, or stone)?
But it would be foolish to not consider other sources of movement. You report that this was a poorly built house. I'm considering the possibility that the subfloor is weak and/or wavy and that the 5/8" layer of OSB that you installed isn't being supported well. So:
6) Did you do anything to secure the first layer of 3/4" T&G ply (or was it actually OSB or flakeboard?) or was it well secured when you began?
7) What condition was the 3/4" subfloor in? Was it smooth and flat? Were any of the seams buckled upward?
8) What type of fasteners did you use for the layer of 5/8" OSB that you installed?
9) Did you specifically run the fasteners into the floor trusses, or did you intentionally avoid them?

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Unread 01-24-2015, 04:02 PM   #9
ox78
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Sorry for the delay on this subject. Had the Schluter Rep and do inspection on this. Everything we done passed inspection. John yes beams had to be put in the joists were spanned WAY too far. The floor was very bouncy. The reasons we came up for this problem was possibly an expansion joint might of helped but is on border line on the requirements. But the the best reason in my opinion is the floor sagged for so long and we corrected this and floor resettled causing these cracks. I attempted many times to fix the grout but the homeowner was uncooperative.
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Unread 01-24-2015, 04:15 PM   #10
Tool Guy - Kg
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Congrats, Doug!

I think you officially have taken the prize for longest time to come back to a thread on the forum.
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Unread 01-24-2015, 07:19 PM   #11
lou432
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Doug. Yep!! Been a long time comin back , but ya came :-)
I had a near same situation cept mine was 2x10`s 16 OC 11.25 max unsupported ,3/4 T&G/ I re-screwed to assure proper fastening then 1/2"second layer ply,set as described here below Using 1 1/8 screws every 3-4 inches on seams and 4-6 in field

http://www.johnbridge.com/images/mik...-0604.pdf..pdf

Ditra attached to ply with Lat 254, all base and cabinet base removed ,sill seal around complete perimiter, Dilex at hall/Kitchen/Kitchen Dinning rm,and Living rm (Hardwood) all 12x12 tiles back buttered then 1/4/3/8 trowell used to set tile then grouted with Mapei Ultra color , 450 sq ft tile.
6-8 weeks later .............Fine hairline cracks and mainly over the second layer of ply. Schluter came out and I tore up 3 tiles to provide adequate proof of proper install and took pics as needed .

Bar bringing in a structural engineer Schluter had no reason for cracked grout and balance of bag sent to Mapei then deemed well in date .
So Schluter asked me for a quote to replace all grout and I did they accepted and I angle ground/diamond blade all grout out then replaced with StarQuartz Urethane (slightly flexable) less prone to crack. and its been 5-7 years since with no issues.
So some things just CAN`T be splained !!!!!!!!!
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Unread 02-21-2015, 09:54 AM   #12
ox78
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Wow Louis sounds very similar. I know deep down we did everything correct and to specifications. The house was under built and we saved the house. Homeowner kept blaming schulter because ditra was foreign to him. In my many attempts and inspections the floor never got worse. So it left me to believe it was resettling issues and the ditra was doing its job.
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