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Question DetailsAsked on 7/28/2014

My house is on a concrete base my bathroom I would like to put tile on it, do I have to do anything special to

I want to be able to put ceramic tile on my concrete floors in my bathroom, do I have to do any thing special before
I put the tile down. I have seen several different videos and they are all telling me different things.

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2 Answers


I do not know what type of flooring you have in the bath but if it is a bare concrete or ceramic tile floor you may be able to use thinset cement right over this. if you have room to add a bond breaker to isolate the new floor from the old one with a layers of bedding mud this might be better or you could use 1/4 inch Hardiboard installed over a thinset bed and then install your tile on this surface.

With the Hardiboard you do not have the worry of the bond between any old flooring getting loose and since you are working with 3'X5' sheets it should give you a nice flat surface to work from, especially if this is a do-it-yourself project.


Answered 5 years ago by ContractorDon


Don's method is what I use IF the slab has cracks that reopen after patching, so you want the tile floor isolated from the slab so hopefully the cracks in the slab will not "reflect" through and crack the tile flooring. My preference - is putting down a separation layer, use poly sheeting under grouted 4x8 (or 5x10 if locally available - not common) concrete backer board - the fewer joints the better.

If your slab has no significant cracking and appears to be stable, I much prefer to grind or shotblast the concrete to remove the curing compound and any sealer and provide a roughened surface, then apply a bonding coat of epoxy thinset immediately under and concurrent with the mud coat and mesh (if doing a mud job or shower base), or directly with epoxy thinset for tile flooring - it will adhere to the existing concrete better, and be much more resistant to cracking from flexure loads than a "floating" or separated installation.

If you google for major tile manufacturers they have installation recommendations - and you can find how-to videos at home improvement sites and This Old House and such as well.

One other thing to remember - the larger the tile generally the wider the groutn cracks and the more important it is to keep the grout joints grouted and sealed. Conversely, tiny tile like mosaic sheet tile will microcrack at each tile joint typically, rather than open larger cracks, so regrouting is going to be needed less frequent, and also because of the large number of joints andsmall tile size, the less likely any reflection cracking from cracks in the slab will crack through tile, as opposed to through grout (whichis easily fixed).

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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