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Preparing concrete flooring for tile


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  • Preparing concrete flooring for tile

    Hello all -- A) just bought a home and B) just discovered this site. Very excited that this community exists...

    I am upgrading a grungy, disgusting corner of our new basement into a decent laundry/storage area and am wondering how to approach the flooring. Right now it looks at though the floor is half linoleum tile of old, and half a more recent poured concrete over that backer board with raised plastic backing that keeps moisture at bay. It looks like a previous owner had a moisture problem in a corner and tried to remedy it by only laying the new backing stuff in the effected area (which also, not surprisingly slants slightly into the corner, where I'm sure puddles were forming)

    The linoleum area and the newer concrete meet fairly seamlessly, except that the floor pitches slightly away and down towards the corner where the concrete starts.

    I want to prepare this surface for tiling with ceramic tile. Do I remove all the linoleum then resurface with self levelling underlayment over the entire area? Can you lay new tile over old linoleum?How "level" does it have to be to support tile without the possibility of it cracking? Will a membrane of some sort reduce stress to the tile over the area that goes from linoleum (if it doesn't need to be pulled up) to the newer concrete?

    Thanks for taking my newbie barrage of questions!

    DC Hammer

  • #2
    Congrats on the new house!

    I do not know about tiling over linoleum... I have never tried that. The real question I guess is how welkl stuck is the stuff? If it is easy to pull up, that is probably the best way to go. I would not really worry about levelling unless there is a huge difference over a very small area. Thinset can be used to "pack in" where needed as long as we aren't talking about huge differences. You can certainly put in a thin layer of self-leveling wet bed if you want to be sure then set the tiles directly into that or let it dry and use thinset to set the tiles. Hope that helps!


    • #3
      My next door neighbor is a contractor, who was giving us tips on installing our tile. He actually suggested that we lay new linoleum before the tile, if we thought the foundation still had some settling to do. This would allow the tile to "float" on the shifting concrete. I have no idea how effective this is (we didn't do it), and I'm not sure about laying over old linoleum, but I just thought I'd share.

      it never stops. ever.
      it never stops. ever.


      • #4
        You can lay ceramic tile over linoleum. In fact it is preferable to do so especially if you have a slab. It depends on if only part of the floor has linoleum over it. If you tile from concrete slab over linoleum you may have to deal with the transition causing a minor hump in your tile. In that case I would remove the top layer of the linoleum. Hope this helps.