Bathroom tiles falling off


Postby scroogemonster » Sat Jun 20, 2009 2:38 pm

hi there, I have noticed that an area of tiles (3ft wide by 5 ft high) on my bathroom wall above the bath are "pushing."

The area affected is exactly where the water from the shower hits the wall.
Obviously water has penetrated the grout and loosened them over the 4 years or so that they have been up.

Is it just a case of carefully removing them ,cleaning off the adhesive from the wall / tiles anrd re-bedding them?

The walls beneath were plastered before tiling. However the plasterer did not polish the skim as in his words "unpolished will give a better key."

I am surprised that they are pushing after so little time.

Is it possible that the tiler hasn't bedded them/grouted properly in the first place?

I didn't like his work and I've never had him back (he pulled the cistern away from the wall to tile behind and left the job with water leaking from the underneath of the toilet!)

Thanks in advance
Kevin
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Postby bd3cc » Sat Jun 20, 2009 11:03 pm

If the wall behind the tiles is plasterboard, and water has been penetrating then this will be useless. you need something waterproof behind the tiles
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Postby scroogemonster » Sun Jun 21, 2009 4:40 pm

[quote="bd3cc"]If the wall behind the tiles is plasterboard, and water has been penetrating then this will be useless. you need something waterproof behind the tiles[/quote]

The wal behind is solid brick, skimmed with bonding plaster I think, but not polished to allow for a better key. I assume that I would remove the tiles, allow time for wall to dry and then re-bed them?
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Postby rosebery » Sun Jun 21, 2009 5:45 pm

"Is it possible that the tiler hasn't bedded them/grouted properly in the first place?"

Impossible to tell over the ether and BTW polished or unpolished is quite irrelevant I'm afraid. Can you answer the following please?P

Was the plaster primed before tiling and if so with what?

What type of shower are we talking about here - I mean in terms of flow rate and pressure?

What adhesive did he use?

How long after the tiling and grouting was complete did you first take a shower?


"he pulled the cistern away from the wall to tile behind and left the job with water leaking from the underneath of the toilet!"

Well he WAS correct to tile behind rather than around but the method seems very unprofessional to me. Cistern should have been drained completeley and removed and replaced after tiling finished.

Cheers
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Postby scroogemonster » Mon Jun 22, 2009 12:24 pm

Thanks for responding.
The plaster was most certainly not primed first. I don't remember the plasterer or tiler doing either.

The shower is a combi fed mixer shower unit pumping at mains pressure only (11 L/min - I tested this with a bucket/stopwatch) there is no shower pump

I haven't got a clue which adhesive he used.

I was told to wait 24 hours b4 showering. I followed this to the letter. I assume I should have waited longer.

Yes I certainly think he was unprofesional. He helped himself to tea and coffee from the kitchen when I popped out for more tiles. He miscalculated the amount needed. I won't be having him back again !!!
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Postby rosebery » Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:26 pm

"The plaster was most certainly not primed first. I don't remember the plasterer or tiler doing either."

I wouldn't expect the plasterer to do it. It should be the tiler. Polished or unpolished it makes no difference to the tiler - but I suspect the plasterer was being plain lazy rather than having a good reason not to do it. In any event I would expect to prime a new plaster surface with APD or Primer G. Certainly NOT PVA under any, any circumstances whatsoever. If it wasn't primed then there is the first potential point of failure.

As a matter of interest how long after the plasterer finished did the tiler start? Was it just a skim or was there a bonding coat firstl? Skim over old plaster is dry enough to be tiled after 24 hours or so. Bonding plus top coat takes 4 or so weeks to dry out before tiling should be attempted.


"The shower is a combi fed mixer shower unit pumping at mains pressure only (11 L/min - I tested this with a bucket/stopwatch) there is no shower pump"

OK so its a fairly strong shower. In that case I would expect to tank the area around the shower first. I'm guessing that wasn't done either


"I haven't got a clue which adhesive he used."

My gut feel is own brand tubbed carp from one of the sheds and probably "fix and grout" as well - useless stuff. You'd probably get away with BAL Whitestar or Granfix Multifix but I would always use a bagged cement based addy. Did he mix it himself from powder or did it come out of a tub?


"I was told to wait 24 hours b4 showering. I followed this to the letter. I assume I should have waited longer."

Not necessarily. Air drying adhesives (the tubbed variety) take quite a time to go off. I wouldn't dream of grouting a tubbed adhesive in less than 24 hours after fixing tiles. Rapidset sets in 2 - 3 hours depending on the brand and can be grouted the same day. Its the grout drying time thats key in that case. BAL say 2 weeks before showering (but theres a shedload of CYA in that). I normally recommend 36 hours.


"He helped himself to tea and coffee from the kitchen when I popped out for more tiles."

Thats a bit naughty if you didn't tell him he could.


"He miscalculated the amount needed."

Theres not much excuse for that really unless he just wasted one hell of a lot. Measure it out, add 10 or 15% for wastage depending on tile dimensions and then buy an extra box for luck. It can always go back.


"I won't be having him back again !!!"

That is, of course, your prerogative.

I have a feeling that just refixing the tiles that are loose is delaying the inevitable which is to strip the area and do it again. By this I mean that if these few are coming adrift (although they have lasted 4 years) then the rest will follow at some stage.

Cheers
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Postby www.tileexperience.co.uk » Sat Aug 22, 2009 4:40 pm

wow, interesting thread. sorry to hear about your mishap, especially as a morning shower is one of the few times men get to themselves in peace and quiet.

my guess is that redoing the tiles that are blown is only the start of the problem.
could it be that there is leaking pipework behind the tiles in question? this would cause them to blow. are the tiles alone blowing, or coming off with the plaster and adhesive?
it really should be a case of taking them off, letting the substrate dry out thoroughly, and ideally tank it out before tiling, and then it would be with a powdered adhesive as mentioned above.

the cause undoubtedly is water, but until you take the tiles off you won't know if it is adhesive failure, plaster/substrate failure etc
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Postby TheDoctor4 » Tue Jul 20, 2010 5:53 pm

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