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Old 07-26-2010, 02:51 PM
 
Location: in here, out there
3,062 posts, read 6,985,855 times
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What to use?

I wanted to solve the problem of grout which had shrunk away from tiles and was letting water in to the base. Using an angle grinder and a chisel I removed a lot of filler from the tiles. In some places the mortar beneath wasn't mixed well and was just sand, so I cleared that out. The impermeable layer appears intact, so I'm just going to re-grout and see what happens.

I don't know what to use. Grout is rather expensive, and it isn't recommended for joints larger than 1/2".

Qwikrete is 5$/60 lbs, but the salesman said that it has pieces larger than sand in it. He recommended qwikrete mortar, which has a lot of sand, but I didn't but it because I don't think mortar is what I need to fill these joints.

I've been talking to different people and getting different recommendations, and I haven't been able to get a good answer.

What I want is a sanded cement that won't shrink too much to fill these joints.

Home depot offers Rapid Set Cement All, Multi-Purpose Construction Material, 55 lb., which looks reasonable.

Who has some suggestions for what I should be looking for?
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Old 07-26-2010, 04:32 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
17,377 posts, read 65,345,345 times
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Use regular sanded grout- but, instead of mixing it with water use the latex polymer that usually used for thinset. This will give the grout more water resistance, flexibility, and shock resistance.

Apply just as you would any other grout. But you have to go faster!
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:22 PM
QIS
 
920 posts, read 5,111,738 times
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Hi Charles,
I see decks like this a lot in So Cal and I'm afraid I don't have a way to avoid the inevitable. There is no product that will do the trick. The sand you found was due to dissolved cementaceous material in the thin set/mortar bed below the tile. Water will continue to get in the joints if you use grout or mortar.You are trying to make a 100 % effective drainage system with dissimilar materials that really have no effective way to stay together when they are constantly expanding or contracting; not going to happen. Anything you use will separate from the tile and allow water intrusion in within a few months; tops. 3/4" is even too wide for using deck o seal! Hairline cracks that appear virtually immediately are considered water intrusion points on this surface.
The tile is a neat look,but, that system just does not work.

If you are a DIYer maybe you could get some ideas from these websites.Deck Coating & Repair, Concrete Residential Balcony Repair, Swimming Pool, Parking & Deck Waterproofing System

Deck Coatings - Decking, Epoxy, decking, Waterproof Pool Coating, Deckcoating Repair, Southern California

These sites are sort of geared towards the pro,but, they give you a sense of how this needs to be done to prevent further damage. The mesh/coating layer system has been around for over 25 years and it is a beautiful thing. You can see that is draining, it is water proof, it is traffic rated and it is easy to repair when a visual discrepancy becomes evident. Nothing wrong with getting some estimates as well!
I'm saying plan on replacing the deck:
cut your losses and hope that you don't have some underlayment and/or framing damage. It won't get any better and it can( and probably will) get a lot worse if this system is left in place.

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Old 07-26-2010, 05:31 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
17,377 posts, read 65,345,345 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QIS View Post
The sand you found was due to dissolved cementaceous material in the thin set/mortar bed below the tile.
I'm not disagreeing but...
Without a physical inspection I wouldn't be so fast to rule that way-
I've seen dumbass tile setters use loose sand to fill low areas so they wouldn't have to use so much thinset.
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:54 PM
QIS
 
920 posts, read 5,111,738 times
Reputation: 588
Just this photo is enough for me! I've inspected more than enough...
My inspection comments would be NOT just to replace the deck,but,also for a FULL review of the substrate and framing. The dis congealed/loose sand isn't even the main issue, just one indicator of what has been happening. These decks fail without the mortar disintegrating as in the op.
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Old 07-27-2010, 11:52 AM
 
Location: in here, out there
3,062 posts, read 6,985,855 times
Reputation: 5109
Thanks for all of the helpful tips. I know that my deck is not made to current waterproof standards because it's 20 years old. I had a deck contractor over to evaluate the project and he said he could re-do it for a nice sum, but also said the deck looked OK and there isn't any evidence of leaking.

I'm not ready to rebuild my house. I just want to fill the joints for now.

Anyone else want to suggest a good product to fill the gaps with?
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