Asked on Jan 09, 2019

What’s to be done when ceramic tile has been improperly installed ?

by Susan

What options do I have with improperly installed ceramic tile flooring -throughout my entire home? The work is so poorly done that I cannot walk barefoot anywhere. The flooring tears up most mops within 3-4 uses. It also dead-stops my vacuum on many of the tile edges. It sounds like a train going over RR tracks when vacuuming, You know the sound: ka-lump, ka-lump .......

I have already won the court case and the monies will come out of his paycheck. I just don’t get a lump sum. I did get his construction, residential & commercial licenses revoked!

That helped my feelings but not my flooring account. Now what?


  8 answers
  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Jan 09, 2019

    Susan, I am SO sorry to hear about your nightmare. If tearing it up is simply not an option and it is laid down hard core (meaning none of the tiles are moving at all ever) you could consider pouring a floor leveling compound over the entire floor. This would return to you to flat concrete surface that you can work with.

  • Save the money you get in a separate account. When you have enough, replace your floor. While I like the floor leveling compound, it will create a problem in bathrooms and kitchens where you have fixed items like toilets, cabinets, bathtubs, etc., that might need to be replaced at a later date. Plus it raises the floor and whatever you put on top, you might need to cut the doors down. Unless you gut the house including cabinets, fixtures and baseboards, then level the floor, then adding new flooring . . . Easier to rip up a room at a time and pay as you go. Just choose a tile that you can be guaranteed production over time. You can feather in the different lots in hallways.

    At least you have options!

    So glad you managed to have his license revoked too.

  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Jan 09, 2019

    Agree. I, too am so sorry. You must start with a flat surface however you can. Wow, what a nightmare. Good luck.

  • Vik Vik on Jan 10, 2019

    The same thing happened to us! I didnt have to sue but it was hell getting my money back. Right now we're living with it. I covered anywhere i could with area rugs. But the whole floor needs to come out. Heartbreaking

  • Yammy Yammy on Jan 11, 2019

    A professional installed new vinyl plank flooring over my existing ceramic like tile in the kitchen, but first applied two coats of what they call "mud" & the finished job is beautiful. This "mud" smooths & evens out the surface, so this is one way you could go. Calling the BBB first regarding the company you choose is helpful as well if you are unsure of their status.

  • Susan Susan on Jan 11, 2019

    Well, my contractor failed to seal the grouting between tiles in all but the Master bedroom and Bath. Also, no spacers or levels were used - at all. He told the judge he had done this job for so long he didn’t need spacers or levels. He could just “eyeball” it and do the job well! The judge disagreed. So much he did “on purpose”, so much was his usual M O, that the flooring is really not the only thing I was “taken” on. I paid for cabinetry that was never installed, and I paid him half of his asking price to install an ash type vanity end cover, then the rest was to be the glass blocks, from vanity top to ceiling. A folding, louvered door was to be put in that doorway. All I got was a copy of the cancelled check, but nothing else.

    Had I honestly realized just how angry he was at my questioning his & his men’s work ethics, I believe he was 1 second away from punching me! Especially when I questioned why my pantry was never tiled, he told me it was because “I” had not emptied the room of furniture-even though the cost of emptying each room of furniture and putting the furniture back was included in the cost estimate (as was the cost of quarter-round), but was never done! Some months later, one of his own workers told me to count the tiles laid and any extras. He then told me his boss had had them to drop off 500 of my tiles for another job. (Now I know where the pantry tiles wound up!)

    The tile manufacturer advised me that the tile that was laid should be taken up before doing anything else in the way of flooring. That after I found out the concrete foundation was never leveled, just tiled!

    And I could go on.......

    Apparently I’m not a very good judge of character. However, I still expect someone to keep their word and do what they tell me they are going to do. Oh, did I say that the furniture they removed from the house is STILL in the entry way sun room?

    Ain’t it grand!?!?

  • Ellis Ellis on Jan 11, 2019

    My sympathy to you on this awful situation, but if it's any comfort to you, you have lots of company, including me. There are so many crooks doing this sort of work, but at least you succeeded in getting his licenses revoked.

    If you can afford it, try to find a genuinely honest and competent contractor, have the old floor ripped up and start over. Good luck and God bless.

  • Mr. Memes Mr. Memes on Jan 11, 2019

    How do you know it’s not the tile itself? Posts pics smh