Question I have a kitchen floor that bends to the right and left. No crawl space and would like to level the floor. Got three suggestions from contractors and would like your opinion. I don't want to spend lots of money. The kitchen was built in 1961 and only has an attic above it. One contractor said to open the floor to see the structure and then they will decide. One contractor said to rebuild the entire kitchen because the base is the most important part of a structure. The 3rd contractor suggested to put on a self leveling liquid and then tile over this product. I am gravitating to the liquid level, but not sure of the results. Has it been used successfully? Are there any problems that I should know. Is it a valid alternative. The floor has not sagged any more in 10 years. Thank you for your time.
Answer Thank you for your question Mary,
It is not surprising that a 52 year old floor has some peaks and rolls to it. You don't mention whether there is excessive cracks in this floor but I suspect that if there were you would have said so. Minor cracking is expected but anything that is separated by 1/8" or more and a detectable differentiation between both sides you may want to have a little deeper inspection. Apart from that though contractor #1 wants to clear any further or continuing issues that may lay waiting beneath your slab. I can't fault him for wanting to pursue this avenue but it is..or could be.. a pricey direction in which to head. Contractor #2 I get the feeling that he is a remodel'er and is looking to expand his opportunity to get in a high bid and make some money as he apparently made no mention to you about any structural integrity or if he wanted to make sure he wasn't just making a fast buck. Contractor #3 may be your guy...as long as you understand with this selection you are addressing only the pitch and roll of the slab and little else. The product material is referred to as a "self-leveling compound", much like hydraulic cement. It is mixed to a thin milkshake consistency and poured out and then the float is "pushed or troweled" helping it along in finding it's own level as it spreads out across the low lying areas you are wanting to raise. It works good as I have done literally thousands of sq.ft. of this material. If there is sufficient cracking you can also consider having your guy lay down an "uncoupling membrane" (ie: Ditra) to isolate the sub-strate from the tile layer that way you protect the new tile installation from whatever the slab may do beneath everything. It is not that expensive and will add some additional "insurance" to the long term survival of your floor. Ok Mary I hope this helps you with your project, feel free to return anytime...
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thanks for the quick response. your answer just confirms what I was thinking. thanks for the information on the additional product you mentioned, I will suggest that. that sure puts my mind at ease.
Ceramic Tile/Marble. I can answer questions about floor preparation, tile selection, layout questions, performance of products, expectations of finish, compatabilities, questions about grout and epoxies, evaluating an installer, asking the right questions to check competence...more? 33 years this August 2012/ many years in commercial application from exterior finishes to Mall store fronts/ interior finishes like floor packages in stores inside Malls examples: The Limited, Lerner/NY, Lane Bryants, Bombay Co., Now involved in Residential new construction covering all types of interior finishes and designs.
I worked in an exclusive field of floorcovering called "Tenant Development" which is by invitational bid only, by way of a National bid list. These are large floor packages usually over 3500 sq. ft. of 18" x 18" Marble and Granite and many other types of Marble and sizes. They are specialty stores where the floor package can cost upwards of $50,000 for one store. I have also done "Structure" stores and J. Riggins stores, Lane Bryant,Express and Body Shop stores where wood flooring is used. Presently work for a National Flooring Company in the Residential new construction arena that covers most interior design elements..Granite Slab tops/wood flooring both job finished and prefinished ect..
Publications My response's are published all across the Internet and picked up by multiple Interior Design sites and Industry related web sites where people have questions...
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