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  1. #1
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    Tile vs poured concrete flooring

    We have a gypsum subfloor with radiant heat and carpet over. Looking to go tile since we were told that you couldnít do a poured concrete over the gypsum.

    Anyone have an opinion on that? It would be a shit ton cheaper and more durable.

    Thanks in advance


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  2. #2
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    I put down Ceramic tile Flooring in a good portion of my place.
    It was expensive but looks and feels great. I did not do it all perfectly and now I have 10 or so broken / cracked tiles I now need to chip out and replace. - Probably because I am not a professional and did not do it right everywhere.

    I was planing on the radiant floor heat. I even have a shed full of the pads. I just got bummed on all the wiring I need to do and just put down the tile.
    Own your fail. ~Jer~

  3. #3
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    Tile vs poured concrete flooring

    (Is the structure even capable of adding a concrete layer? Upper story or over crawl?)

    The tile will be a lot less thermal mass to heat

    You can go large format tile if youíve got a lot of sf to cover
    - up to 30x30, even larger
    - plank (wood look or stone look)
    esp if the gypcrete is flat (tho some leveling compound to make sure might be reasonable)

    There are def some decent concrete look tiles out there if you like the look

    It is a lot harder on the feet than your current carpet

  4. #4
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    Tile vs poured concrete flooring

    Terrazzo is the way to go but nobody does that anymore because we can't have flooring that last generations.

    If you live in a big city you might get lucky and find someone that can do it but your best bet is big tiles or those fake wood looking ceramic tiles., both look great and should work out if your not too picky

    This is a refinish I did on terrazzo in a family home built in '62 that was a rental place for 30 years. Rented a polisher from HD and used a sander to clean up the edges. If you can find a old one that knows how to pour and finish terrazzo then you should go with them.
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    Last edited by mud; 07-11-2018 at 12:19 AM.

  5. #5
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    We like our cork.
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  6. #6
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    Im not sure I understand what your subfloor is actually made of. I'll assume it's not gypboard (sheetrock) Concrete is not cheap nor easy so if that's your draw just tile it. Concrete takes skilled labor its not DIY. Im sure 10 people will tell you how they did themselves and I will tell how they did a shitty job.

    I dont do residential but I will give you the commercial application:

    Anyways- Concrete is pretty heavy, 2"is about 25# per SF and to make it look cool polished you want aggregate in it. Self-leveling products are agg free. I would get a 3/8" peagravel grout from your concrete house and get some good finishers to lay it down, make sure to cure it fr at least 7 days. Then buy a wet grinder and polishing pads and you go to task. Its laborous and messy but it looks amazing. You want to score the concrete as much as possible (no more than 10-15' OC so you can control the cracking otherwise it will crack, or you might like the cracks, it just depends.

    FYI they still do terazzo its spendy AF.
    Hello darkness my old friend

  7. #7
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    We had a concrete floor guy come out and he said the floor is gypsum. Looks like concrete to me but he said itís to soft? To pour a concrete finish over. The depth would be in the 3/8-1/2 inch range. Water radiant heat pipes buried in that existing floor.

    Have a friend who tiles give us an estimate, itís not terrible for labor since the floor is essentially ready to lay tile once the carpet is up.

    Like the look of stained concrete and the cost.

    I guess itís porcelain tile for us.


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  8. #8
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    we had a hospital terrazzo install here in portland about 8yrs ago
    the GC had to get a crew from seattle to come do it because the local market just doesn't support that sort of work here anymore ($$$ institutional)

    your advice received thus far is right: you can't put conc over the gypcrete; tile is the best move


    there are a shitton out there once you start looking...here are two potentially concrete look porcelains:

    mostly darks, available in 24x48
    http://www.pentalonline.com/lines/porcelain/hardLeather

    mostly lights, almost limestone-ish, other decorative matching shapes
    http://www.pentalonline.com/lines/porcelain/mark

  9. #9
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    3/8 - 1/2 inch concrete? WTF?


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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shredhead View Post
    We like our cork.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Iíll never understand why cork isnít more popular.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Self Jupiter View Post
    Iíll never understand why cork isnít more popular.
    People don't like stepping on thumbtacks

  12. #12
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    Thatís just like, your opinion, man

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Self Jupiter View Post
    I’ll never understand why cork isn’t more popular.
    Dogs.

    I fucking love cork, but my inlaws have a spazztastic golden and we will, at some point, have a dog that is not 14 and that actually runs around. I am not confident that cork holds up well to that.

    Other than that, cork is awesome. Cork in bathrooms is next level. I will never understand why people put tile in residential bathrooms.

  14. #14
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    I have a dog.
    Cork shown is six years old, in a ski in/out condo.
    It gets walked on with ski boots, a lot.

  15. #15
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    Thanks acinpdx, Iíll look into that!
    Cork would be great, had same dog concerns. Sounds unfounded.


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  16. #16
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    I bought this place with rough slate tile/dark grey grout

    kitchen/bathroom/entrance are 12" square big natural rough tiles everywhere else is medium dark laminate and its great IMO cuz everywhere already looks rough so any imperfections or dirt that happen don't really show

    a couple years ago I washed it down nice n clean and treated with a wet look cure seal which really made it look good

    and cleaning is easier/better ... if you go for that kind of thing
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  17. #17
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    concrete and the industrial look is over rated
    over done
    cork is kinda low rent trashy that's why no one is doing it, think paneling in the basement rec room, same thing
    I can lay tile, bright colors are coming back think baby blue or orange
    that's what I'd do
    I run about 20 bucks a sq ft for floor tile, might be able to knock it down a dollar or two
    but that's doubtful I"m sure we'll have to use some sort of membrane or backer due to your sub flooring being crap
    good luck

  18. #18
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    Tile vs poured concrete flooring

    Every style of flooring and each style/type can be made to look good, bad or somewhere in between. Stick with a coherent overall room design that doesnít try to look too cool / trendy and Iím sure it will look great.
    Last edited by Self Jupiter; 07-11-2018 at 08:49 PM.

  19. #19
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    So many options in tile these days it's crazy, take some time picking it out and don't look back.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shredhead View Post
    I have a dog.
    Cork shown is six years old, in a ski in/out condo.
    It gets walked on with ski boots, a lot.
    Good to know. Is it floating or a glue down?

  21. #21
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    I did tile over poured gypsum in my house. The gypsum is over an existing slab, so deflection is not an issue. If the floor is solid, coat the gypsum with a water proof sealer and tile that bitch. Cork sucks for radiant floors, it's to good of an insulator. 14 years, not one cracked tile 18x18.

  22. #22
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    Glued down, over in floor radiant.
    Maybe not ideal for thermal mass, but for our application it works great.
    We have one of the oldest condo complexís in Colorado, built on a steep slope and we get some movement. We need something flexible, because solid surfaces just crack in a couple of years.

  23. #23
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    Great info. Hadnít thought of the sealer. Will do


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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcski View Post
    People don't like stepping on thumbtacks
    Thumb tacks put into the cork properly is not an issue. It is the push pins with the plastic sticking up or the thumb tacks facing up that are painful on the feet.

  25. #25
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    Oct 2017
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    Conc can't go directly over gypcrete. And your proposed thinckness of the new floor is too thin in any case. One could prime the gypcrete with a product like Ardez P51 latex primer and then overlay the assembly with a dyed Ardex product to give a nice concrete finished floor look.

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