Tile Repair Blog
You may have heard the term 'expansion joint' thrown about quite a bit when building your home, getting renovations done or when making small talk with your builder or local tiler. But what exactly are they and how can they help you avoid the age old problem of loose, hollow floor tiles?
Loose tiles, or tiles that have 'tented' or become hollow, often occur as a result of too much pressure. Pressure from beneath that can cause your tiles to 'explode' without warning, which can be very dangerous for you and your family.
This pressure is usually caused by movement in the substrate, be it from changes in temperature, moisture in the foundations of the floor, or simply the effects of old father time.
This pressure is unavoidable. Your house will always shift, and pressure will always build. The important thing is to ensure that pressure has somewhere to go. That's where expansion joints come in.
An expansion joint is simply a space within your concrete slab or in the case of your floor tiles, a gap in the tiles that provides the space needed for that natural substrate movement to occur without causing damage to your tiles. Sometimes referred to as movement joints, expansion gaps or expansion lines, these are vital to ensuring your floor tiles stay strong and do not become loose or drummy. Surprisingly, often these expansion joints are often overlooked when installing tiles for the first time, particularly in small areas such as bathrooms.
Without an expansion lines, the pressure only has one way to go. UP. This will cause tenting tiles or in worst cases, exploding tiles! Often your grout will crack, and your tiles will start to make a hollow 'thunk' noise to signal the presence of too much pressure under the tile.
An expansion line is a gap, slightly wider than a normal grout line, usually filled with silicone or another substance that allows for movement. Check your bathroom or tiled floor today- if you cannot find an expansion joint you may need to arrange for one to be installed or else risk damage to your tiles.
Have your tiles become loose or drummy?
If you believe that a lack of expansion joint has caused your tiles to come loose, you need to contact a professional to have one installed. Barefoot Floors can both install an expansion joint for you, and fix your loosened tiles in one easy, cost effective application.
Contact us today to find out how.
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