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Hollow tiles or cracking tiles and grout? Read this before ripping it all out.


Or when you drop a spoon, does it sound like it’s landing on an empty container? Is your grout cracking? If so, then some of your tiles may be in the process of separating from the underlayment. Perhaps the tiles are still partially attached at the corners or somewhere in the middle, but it’s just a matter of time before a hollow tile begins to crack.

Depending on what’s happening underneath the flooring, these kinds of problems may be caused by, among other things, structure settlement or weak underlayment. With structure settlement, resolving floor problems may be a complicated and expensive ordeal. But, if weak underlayment is the diagnosis, there are two relatively simple and inexpensive possible remedies that can be used.

The first is to have tile glue injected underneath the tiles. This serves two purposes. The glue will fill the hollow gaps while at the same time strengthening the bond.

The second possible solution is to replace the grout with a flexible grout. The advantage of flexible grout is that if there is any movement in the floor, the grout flexibility dissipates stress that would otherwise put pressure on the tile and cause cracking.

We can accurately diagnose and resolve problems with your tile and grout installation. If you suspect your flooring is separating from the underlayment, don’t assume your floor must be replaced. Instead, give us a call to discuss your options. You could save thousands of dollars. And don’t delay, because your tiles may crack, increasing the complexity (and price) for repairs.

Look for the full article in the Summer 2014 edition of Stone Advisory Magazine