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question eddie 
Dec-31-2007 09:40

I am laying tile on a back porch. Is there a fan or something that can be used to be able to lay it in freezing weather?

It is not a good idea to install tile in temperatures below 45 degrees F using most common materials. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question mark 
Dec-30-2007 21:56

we have just put in a ceramic tile floor in the bathroom. is there something that we put under the toilet, ( like a gasket or something) to cushion betweeen the toilet and floor, or does the toilet just sit right on the tile?
Dear MARK:

It is common for the toilet to sit directly on the tile floor. It is also common to caulk the joint between the toilet and the tile. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question WB 
Dec-30-2007 09:57

I am installing a 14" x 14" glass tile backsplash in a 40 year old home. What is the best way to cut the tile, is there a special wet saw blade or glass cutter? I have heard of coating the cut line with oil or superglue. What is the best adhesive, mastic, thinset or silicone? How do I cut the outlet holes? How do you keep the backing from peeling away? Can the glass tile be polished or bullnosed with a diamond marble/granite pad? What are the chances of cracking if the tile is butt tight with no grout?
Dear WB:

This is true with all glass tile larger than 3"x 3". The installation of individual 3"x 3" or larger module (unmounted) glass tile REQUIRES that the specific tile manufacturer recommendations be flowed. The reason I can not explain the best way to install or cut or the best setting material to use is the fact that the glass tile manufacturers differ on methods and materials for their glass tile. Contact the manufacture of this tile to get the necessary information. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question reddog 
Dec-29-2007 23:58

ceramic tile around shower head fixture is too large

You may need to give a little more information on what type of help you need?
question Rabbiteyes 
Dec-29-2007 12:49

We are installing tumble marble in our bathroom. I was wondering if I should use 1/2 inch cement board on the floor or set the tile in mud with wire mesh. I am not sure what to use on the walls as well; mastic or thinset. Would love to get your advice. Please help! Thank you J

There are many backerboards available that can be used for this type application and makes for a good installation. 1/2" backer board can be installed on the floors and walls but do not use 1/4" on walls, it's designed for floors only. Use a modified thinset for best results with this type application. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question hankuruski 
Dec-29-2007 02:08

Hi there everyone, I am new to this forum so any help will be great appreciated! Recent we have found a couple swelling spots on our ceramic floor on concrete slab. The construction was about 13 years ago and since then we have never had any flooding or water damage of any kind. The first swolen spot covers about twenty sq.ft. because I was away and the wife couldn't do anything so it got larger by weeks. No cracks or damage in any way it springing just like a giant bubble so I had to cut the grout and removed the popped tiles. One interesting fact finding was the mortar adhered well to the tile but not to the concrete slab, that is I didn't scrap anything off the floor, it was a clean some paint was also found on the floor. But no evidence of water damage so I took advice from a neighbor and covered a patch of the floor and left under a lamp for 24 hrs and it was moist on the concrete but wasn't sweating on the plastic sheeting cover. Sorry to have taken so long to get to the question. What could possibly cause our ceramic floor to popped up and swelling from the concrete slab? Most of the swelling-ness forum was on wood subfloor so I figure to pop this question about the concrete slab. Many thanks in advance for the answer in advance! Hank

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question Himavanth 
Dec-29-2007 00:15

In one of the school building Vitrified floor tiles(2ftx2ft)10mm tk in ground and first floor class rooms started popping up , which were laid about 2years before.The Jointing of tiles is paper Joint Type. the structure seems to be intact, even after relaying in some portion , the problem is persisting. Please help me out with solution.

Expansion joints are a must to help control movement when the tile gets warm or cold and any other type of movement that can occur. The TCNA hand book recommends that for interior applications, every 20 to 25 feet in either direction and a perimeter expansion joint as well. To view a picture of a properly installed expansion joint and the necessary components, go to  Gerald Sloan NTCA
question jewelz 
Dec-27-2007 23:01

I am putting new Porcelain tile Glazed on my Kicthen floor.what kind of dish washer detergent would be safe to use, in case it would happen to over flow or spilled?

Most dish detergents are fine to use without any concern of damaging the tile work, however to be extra safe pick one that is PH neutral. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question FlamMan 
Dec-27-2007 13:22

is there a way to cut tile without purchasing expensive tools for a one time job? I am replacing a small shower floor and need to cut the perimeter pieces.

You may want to rent the necessary tools from a tool rental shop to use as a one time installation. You will probably need a scoring board that works much like a glass cutter to scribe and snap straight cuts and maybe a wet saw to make difficult multi-angle cuts. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question jyoti 
Dec-27-2007 06:26

Dear sir , Could you please give me the advice That i wan to know , i have the good knowledge to product the tile adhesive product ( grout ) c r 3000 and cr 7000 , which is certify by iso 9001 I get the techinical knowledge in south korea . Now want to increase this knowedge further . so please kindely help me where can i get the chance to incrase y knowledge thanyou sunil kumar neupane kahmandu

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question andrea 
Dec-26-2007 16:34

The wall behind my stove is accumulating grease.Can floor tile be used on the wall behind my stove to counter this problem? Thank you.

Yes, tile is a good choice behind a stove. A good ceramic or porcelain wall or floor tile is a common choice for many home owners. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question vicki 
Dec-26-2007 16:09

How do I remove a ceramic towel bar from ceramic tile. It is in a bethroom that was remodeled in 1966. The tile is perectly good but the plastic rod in between the 2 rod ends broke. Is this rod screwed into a stud or just attached to the tile with caulk?

It's not easy to remove a towel bar post if it were installed correctly. If you have to remove the post, start as close to the center using a sharp 1/4" chisel and hammer to cut it out a little at a time towards the outside. If you just need to replace a broken towel bar, then go to your local tile dealer to purchase an adjustable one that is designed to do that. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question Dartagnan 
Dec-26-2007 15:35

First time user. I have installed some 18x18 porcelain tile in my bathroom only to decide to put a towel rod in after the fact. I have had a time of it trying to cut the holes to set the rod holder into. I have a Rotozip with a porcelain 1/4" bit but the going is crazy slow! Nothing else I have tried has made a dent! Can you recommend an alternative way to cut 1/4" down?

If used properly the Rotozip should do the trick with ease using their diamond porcelain cutting bit. You could look into some of the other tools offered in the tool section of this site to see what else is available. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question Tile 
Dec-26-2007 14:44

Is it necessary to use a leveler on my concrete floor before Tiling?
Dear TILE:

You should check the concrete floor for flatness to determine the need to true up or not. Use a 10' straight edge to see if there are more than 1/4" variances in 10' or more than 1/16" in 1'. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question KKLaw  p_member 
Dec-26-2007 13:27

Hi tileman, Per one of your tileman's advice, I used Ceramaseal grout stain to tain the grout joints in my shower because one of your tileman adviser said that it would allow better breathability for the grout joints since the grout joints are in a shower. I was doing the staining over the weekend. I used a plastic spoon to scoop out some grout stain into another container and then I left the plastic spoon in the smaller container with the smaller amount grout stain that I used to stain the grout joints. By the time I finished, I noticed that part of the plastic spoon already dissolved or melt in the smaller container due to the solvent of the grout stain. The next day, concerned about the grout stain got contaminated by the unexpected dissolving spoon in the smaller container when I was staining, I decided to redo the staining. I started to use some paint thinner to wet the grout joints and use a cotton cloth to scrub the grout joints. Most of the grout stain seems to be able to be emulsified by the paint thinner and rubbed off using a lot of elbow grease. Since the paint thinner is quite penetrating, I am wondering if the paint thinner would somehow penetrate into behind the cement backing board and reacted and dissolved some of the tar-based water barrier behind the cement backing board nailed to the stubs. I also would like to know if I can still use the original can of grout stain that I dipped the plastic spoon two or three times when I was scooping out grout stain. If I clean the grout joints enough to be able to wet the grout joints and make them look dark in color after wetting, does it mean that it is ready to accept grout stain or sealer. Many thanks. K.K. Law

It is unlikely that the small amount of thinner that is absorbed into the grout will be enough to damage the vapor retarder behind the backer board. Yes, if the grout darkens when water is applied then it will accept the stain or sealer. The container that had the plastic spoon dipped into it two or three times should be fine to reuse but you may want to call the manufacture to ask their recommendations. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question FlamMan 
Dec-26-2007 12:34

what is the material under shower floor tile. It feels as if it may be sand based but with some adhesive. it is about 1 1/2 to 2" thick

This material is a mix of sand and portland cement of a ratio of 4 parts sand to 1 part portland cement. It is commonly called floor mud. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question viper 
Dec-25-2007 14:45

We moved into a newly built home and I have notice that there is old grout haze left on some of the tile. I tried washing this and it will not come off. How do I remove or "buff" the ceramic tile to remove the haze and bring back the original tile luster?

Go to the home page of this site and click on tile maintenance then click on ceramic tile and colored grout to see the proper steps to correct the grout problem that you have described. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question hcirgib 
Dec-24-2007 10:37

i am installing 6x6 ceramic tile on my bathroom floor and walls. i plan on using 1/4"grout lines. i plan on using sanded grout on the floor, but can i use unsanded on the walls??

Unsanded grout is most often used on the walls but it has a limitation on grout joint width of 1/8" max. If you try to use the unsanded grout in joints larger than 1/8", the unsanded grout can shrink and crack plus other problems such as uneven color and weak or powdering out. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question jyoti 
Dec-24-2007 01:02

Dear sir , i have had the experience to product the tile adhesive grout product (cr 3000 & cr 7000 ) in SOUTH KOREA more than 5 years. It was certify by ISO 9001 . i have also knowledge about the chemical to product this grout. Now i want to increase the knowledge in this fild also . Could you please give me the advice about me ? i always be greatful with you thankyou.

You may want to click on some of the material manufacturers and down load the material data sheets that are available. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question cjr 
Dec-23-2007 01:20

We installed a ceramic tile floor a few days ago. Today I noticed water puddling in several areas of the floor. I cleaned the water up initially thinking it may have been a spill, but came back a couple of hours later and new water had seeped out in a different area. The water appears to be seeping from the grout joints, but is enough that it lightly puddles in some areas of the tile. Is this normal?
Dear CJR:

This is not normal. You may have some type of hydrostatic pressure that is unrelated to the tile. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question jjaugie 
Dec-22-2007 08:56

I have a pink marble tile floor around my bar; Can I lay ceramic tile over the marble without pulling it up? It is in the basement (concrete floor). There are no cracks in the tile or grout of the existing floor. Thanks.

Yes, you can lay new tile over the existing marble but be sure to strip off any wax or sealers that may be on the surface of the marble. You should sand or rough up the surface of the marble first and then clean up any residue. Use a highly modified thinset mortar to bond the new tile to the marble and be sure to follow the directions from the thinset manufacture on proper mixing and application. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question ianjack 
Dec-21-2007 12:42

I need to replace several pieces of cracked 6"X6" ceramic wall tile in my bathroom. The original tile was installed 20-30 years ago. The thickness of the existing tile is under a 1/4". I've shopped around a bit, and I've only come into contact with 1/4" and 3/8" tile. Do you know of anyone who sells thinner tile? Thanks for your help.

I'm sorry I can't help you with this. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question ianjack 
Dec-21-2007 12:40

I need to replace several pieces of cracked 6"X6" ceramic wall tile in my bathroom. The original tile was installed in 20-30 years ago. The thickness of the existing tile is under a 1/4". I've shopped around a bit, and I've only come into contact with 1/4" and 3/8" tile. Do you know of anyone who sells thinner tile? Thanks for your help.

I'm sorry I cant help you with this. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question markley 
Dec-20-2007 16:56

I have a 20x12 covered deck that I am thinking of closing in to create an outdoor room. What would i have to do to cover the existing wood deck flooring with ceramic tile? The flooring is 2x6's 16 inches on center. Also, the deck is about 3 feet off the ground. Could I just cover the existing 2x6's with plywood, then some kind of concrete backing, then tile?

There are several companies that are offering products and methods now to do what you are wanting to do. Yes, you can cover the deck with plywood and use a backer board if you choose to. You may want to look at the manufacturers that are here on this site and other sites to see what they have to offer. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question BRTLLC 
Dec-20-2007 16:47

On existing single wythe 12" concrete block exterior wall, what recommendations do you have for installing ceramic tile on interior unpainted wall surfaces. Walls are approximately 20' high with 2'-0" overhangs.

There are many considerations before choosing a method that best suits application of wall tile over concrete block. Go to  to get the TCNA hand book. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question Karen 
Dec-19-2007 17:57

I have a big shower that has corian on the walls and a fiberglass pan. The pan is cracked so I was wondering if we could tile over the fiberglass pan instead of ripping out the whole shower.

It is not common to tile over a fiberglass shower receptor that was not designed to be tiled. I would not recommend it but there are some epoxy manufacturers that make a product to do just that. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question architechs mom 
Dec-19-2007 13:36

will small white sub way tile with white grout on walls and floor make a small bathroom look smaller or bigger

Depends on who is determining it. This is a variable on what the owner wants. Gerald Sloan NTCA
question Mrs 
Dec-19-2007 12:17

We have a property in the Loire Valley in France. The sitting room floor is tiled on concrete. It has just 'erupted' with tent like lifts running across the floor. At first we thought it was water damaged (a burst pipe for example underneath) but this is not the case. Having lifted a few of the tiles the concrete underneath is flat, not broken up and is dry - it even has dust on it! This has occured within the last two weeks. What could cause the tiles to lift up in this way. Also if you walk across the tiled floor it is crunching and cracking under your foot. Appreciate your advice. Even local builders are bemused by this. Anna.
Dear MRS:

It could be several things and not limited to. The most common cause of tenting is the lack of expansion joints. For interior tile work it's 20 to 25 lf in one direction and the other. The exterior recommendations are 8 to 12 lf . Another cause is foundation settlement . Gerald Sloan NTCA
question Owner 
Dec-19-2007 10:31

Hey guys! I have an idea i am thinking about doing. Here it is.You offer how to videos,advice ect.What do you think of offering a service At Home Consulting Including Layout,Advise,One on One Job Set-Up Etc.Your Thoughts are Appreciated! Rich

Yes go to  Gerald Sloan NTCA
question moonshadow 
Dec-19-2007 10:10

A contractor told me that Hardibacker board can absorb the water from the thinset too fast, which can make the floor tiles crack in the future. Is this true? If yes, how do I avoid this problem?

You should always damp sponge any backer board the absorbs water first before you install the thinset to bond the tile. Gerald Sloan NTCA
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