Tile Floors anyone?

This is a discussion on Tile Floors anyone? within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Well, she did it. She (the wife) backed me in a corner, now I have to install a new tile floor in the kitchen. I'm ...

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Thread: Tile Floors anyone?

  1. #1
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    Tile Floors anyone?

    Well, she did it. She (the wife) backed me in a corner, now I have to install a new tile floor in the kitchen. I'm going to attack it over labor day. It will be 300 Sq Ft of fun. I'll be glad to get rid of that horrid linoleum that the builder installed though.

    Heres my question... Whats the best way to tear up the existing floor? Underneath, its 3/4 ply. Should I even bother to tear it up, or should I just throw cement board over top the linoleum?

    I know some of you guys have done this before, and some of you are in this line of work, so help a brother out!
    I'm not a total rookie to tile, I've done a few floors and showers before, but it always has been new construction.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Member Array vernonator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SIXTO View Post
    Well, she did it. She (the wife) backed me in a corner, now I have to install a new tile floor in the kitchen. I'm going to attack it over labor day. It will be 300 Sq Ft of fun. I'll be glad to get rid of that horrid linoleum that the builder installed though.

    Heres my question... Whats the best way to tear up the existing floor? Underneath, its 3/4 ply. Should I even bother to tear it up, or should I just throw cement board over top the linoleum?

    I know some of you guys have done this before, and some of you are in this line of work, so help a brother out!
    I'm not a total rookie to tile, I've done a few floors and showers before, but it always has been new construction.
    Just put the Durrock over the top of the existing floor, maybe some mastic/thinset to bond it down well and a BOAT load of screws. Ask the folks where you will be buying your supplies - they will know the specifics.

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    Senior Member Array rabywk's Avatar
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    Well there are two ways of doing it. The first is go get a tool from your local hardware store (basically a big blade on the end of a long pole). It is only about $25 for it, but it will take a couple of hours to get the old floor up.

    The second way is, if the flooring is firmly secured to the floor you can just take a belt sander and really rough up the surface. This will allow the thinset to grab a hold of the old flooring and you will not have any issues.

    http://www.ceramic-tile.com/tileman.cfm

    This is a good forum to answer questions about it.

    BTW... you are lucky. My wife had me do over 1200 sq ft a couple of months ago. 300 is a breeze.
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    Wear a mask if you rough it up with a sander or kick up a lot of dust.

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    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
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    Just another note...if the linoleum is much older than the early-mid 80s then there is a good chance that it has asbestos in it....even though it wasn't found in many things by the 80s it was still in linoleum floors.

    I would put it right over the existing floor if it won't mess up your toe kick too much

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    Just put the Durrock over the top of the existing floor, maybe some mastic/thinset to bond it down well and a BOAT load of screws. Ask the folks where you will be buying your supplies - they will know the specifics.

    +1 on the Durrock, hardyback board. It can be laid on top of the old linolium and be screwed down. This will save a little work and still hold the new tile if you have the space.
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    I personally would pull up the old linoleum. It may be more time consuming but could end up saving lots of headaches in the future. I do have a couple of questions first though.
    1) is this on a second floor above a finished room underneath or above a crawlspace / unfinished basement?
    2) what kind of tile? ceramic, porcelain, stone, etc? size? 4x4? 18x18? etc? thickness of tile?

    The main reason I would tear out the linoleum is to actually see the subfloor. If the linoleum is only perimeter glued then it will be easier than you might expect. Just remember that you will still have to cut it along the cabinets and islands if applicable unless you are wanting to run it underneath everything in the event that the kitchen footprint may change in the future.
    Make absolutely sure that there is no "give" in the floor. No soft spots or creaks. This is where exposed subfloor is really handy. It will allow you to fix any problems in the floor itself BEFORE you put tile and grout in. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to fix a soft spot where the tile or grout has cracked after everything is already in. It is possible if underneath is unfinished, but it is still better to tackle that job from above most of the time.
    Secondly, exposed subfloor will aid in staggering the cement board off of the subfloor seams. you do not want a seam in plywood and a seam in cement board to coincide. That is a flex point waiting to happen which can result in the same cracks as soft spots or ridges.
    Lastly, replacing linoleum with tile will most definitely be a thicker floor. Be prepared for decently sized transitions from the tile to whatever existing flooring you are butting it up to. Thicker cement board will only accentuate this problem so take that into account as well. Thicker floor will also require more cutting of trim (mainly door casing) if there are several doors in the kitchen, consider renting a jamb saw. Believe me, it will be worth it. Lastly, always remember that shoe molding is you friend.

    I know most of that stuff was pretty basic and common sense so don't take any offense to me going over the small stuff. I am just making sure that all the bases were covered. By the way, I am a home remodeler and have been doing this type of work for the past 15 years. Let us all know how it ends up and don't forget the pictures.
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    Or..

    Have you seen some of the new floating laminate floors that look like grouted tile?

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    NO NO

    Quote Originally Posted by rabywk View Post
    Well there are two ways of doing it. The first is go get a tool from your local hardware store (basically a big blade on the end of a long pole). It is only about $25 for it, but it will take a couple of hours to get the old floor up.

    The second way is, if the flooring is firmly secured to the floor you can just take a belt sander and really rough up the surface. This will allow the thinset to grab a hold of the old flooring and you will not have any issues.

    http://www.ceramic-tile.com/tileman.cfm

    This is a good forum to answer questions about it.

    BTW... you are lucky. My wife had me do over 1200 sq ft a couple of months ago. 300 is a breeze.
    I have owned a flooring store for 25 years. DO NOT SAND RESILIANT FLOORING,it is a health hazard. If the floor is down good and there are no more then 2 floors down, I would recommend WEDI BOARD, a little more costly, but easy to install.

  11. #10
    Member Array KellyCooper's Avatar
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    I personally would pull up the old linoleum. It may be more time consuming but could end up saving lots of headaches in the future. I do have a couple of questions first though.
    1) is this on a second floor above a finished room underneath or above a crawlspace / unfinished basement?
    2) what kind of tile? ceramic, porcelain, stone, etc? size? 4x4? 18x18? etc? thickness of tile?

    The main reason I would tear out the linoleum is to actually see the subfloor. If the linoleum is only perimeter glued then it will be easier than you might expect. Just remember that you will still have to cut it along the cabinets and islands if applicable unless you are wanting to run it underneath everything in the event that the kitchen footprint may change in the future.
    Make absolutely sure that there is no "give" in the floor. No soft spots or creaks. This is where exposed subfloor is really handy. It will allow you to fix any problems in the floor itself BEFORE you put tile and grout in. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to fix a soft spot where the tile or grout has cracked after everything is already in. It is possible if underneath is unfinished, but it is still better to tackle that job from above most of the time.
    Secondly, exposed subfloor will aid in staggering the cement board off of the subfloor seams. you do not want a seam in plywood and a seam in cement board to coincide. That is a flex point waiting to happen which can result in the same cracks as soft spots or ridges.
    Lastly, replacing linoleum with tile will most definitely be a thicker floor. Be prepared for decently sized transitions from the tile to whatever existing flooring you are butting it up to. Thicker cement board will only accentuate this problem so take that into account as well. Thicker floor will also require more cutting of trim (mainly door casing) if there are several doors in the kitchen, consider renting a jamb saw. Believe me, it will be worth it. Lastly, always remember that shoe molding is you friend.

    I know most of that stuff was pretty basic and common sense so don't take any offense to me going over the small stuff. I am just making sure that all the bases were covered. By the way, I am a home remodeler and have been doing this type of work for the past 15 years. Let us all know how it ends up and don't forget the pictures.
    ~~~the biggest deficit of the general public is a lack of personal accountability.. I have no one to blame for my actions, regardless of circumstances, except myself and by the same token I can hold no one else responsible for my protection and well being other than myself~~~

  12. #11
    Member Array MnemonicMonkey's Avatar
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    I definitely prefer Hardibacker instead of Durock. Cleaner and easier to work with. Never heard of Wedi board. I'll have to check it out. 3x5 boards will also make it easier to stagger seams with the subfloor.
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    I knew you guys would come through, thanks for the info.

    Yes, it is unfinished below the kitchen- its my workshop in the basement.
    My house was built in 2000, so its newer flooring and its garbage. I canít wait to get rid of it.

    The tile I am looking at is a 12x12 ceramic. I did pay attention to the thickness, maybe a ľĒ or so? I have not bought it yet, so Iím open to suggestions or advice.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Sixto, before you start your tile project you need to check a couple of things...
    Check the leveler feet on ALL appliences, IE; dishwasher, stove, trash compactor, etc etc. you will be raising the floor level at least 1/2", thus removing 1/2" from your opening.

    Make sure that you will be able to reinstall your appliences after the tile is installed. Been there, didn't do that...once....many years ago, was not fun!!!

    Have fun!! sounds like a great project!
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    Quote Originally Posted by flagflyfish View Post
    Sixto, before you start your tile project you need to check a couple of things...
    Check the leveler feet on ALL appliences, IE; dishwasher, stove, trash compactor, etc etc. you will be raising the floor level at least 1/2", thus removing 1/2" from your opening.

    Make sure that you will be able to reinstall your appliences after the tile is installed. Been there, didn't do that...once....many years ago, was not fun!!!

    Have fun!! sounds like a great project!
    I had this problem in my house, the dishwasher came with the house and sat in hole under the counter. The floor had four layers on it, the new dishwasher would not fit.

    This was only a temporary problem, a few weeks later I gutted the entire kitchen and started over.

    As far as putting tile over the floor, I put tile over a hard wood floor in my dining room, and tore out the floors in my entry way and bathrooms before tiling.

    I guess I would be concerned with how much give is in the current linoleum floor, don't want the grout lines to crack. The give could be controlled with the thickness of the cement board and a layer of thin-set. The problem would be a linoleum floor, thin-set, wonder board, thin-set, tile, now you have the hole to set the dishwasher in.

    Take that for what it's worth, I am not a professional floor installer, just a guy that took a class and did on my own.
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    Quote Originally Posted by flagflyfish View Post
    Sixto, before you start your tile project you need to check a couple of things...
    Check the leveler feet on ALL appliences, IE; dishwasher, stove, trash compactor, etc etc. you will be raising the floor level at least 1/2", thus removing 1/2" from your opening.

    Make sure that you will be able to reinstall your appliences after the tile is installed. Been there, didn't do that...once....many years ago, was not fun!!!

    Have fun!! sounds like a great project!
    Yeah, I already thought of this. I'm good to go, I have plenty of room to work with. The only thing I'm really concearned about now is the transition between the carpeted living room and the tile floor.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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