Replacing Cracked Ceramic Floor Tile

Procedure code:
National Capitol Region Specifications - Switzer Building
Ceramic Tile Floor Finish
Last Modified:




    A.   This procedure includes guidance on replacing cracked,
         broken, worn or poorly color matched replacement tiles
         with new to match original.

    B.   Safety Precautions:

         1.   Comply with municipal and Federal regulations
              governing the cleaning, chemical waste disposal,
              scaffolding protection to adjacent properties and

         2.   Refer to Federal Government Specification Section
              01546, Health and Safety, and comply with all the
              section requirements.

    C.   See 01100-07-S for general project guidelines to be
         reviewed along with this procedure. These guidelines
         cover the following sections:

         1.   Safety Precautions

         2.   Historic Structures Precautions

         3.   Submittals

         4.   Quality Assurance

         5.   Delivery, Storage and Handling

         6.   Project/Site Conditions

         7.   Sequencing and Scheduling

         8.   General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)

         These guidelines should be reviewed prior to performing
         this procedure and should be followed, when applicable,
         along with recommendations from the Regional Historic
         Preservation Officer (RHPO).  


    A.   American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), 100
         Barr Drive, West Conshohocken, PA 19428, (610) 832-9585
         or FAX (610) 832-9555.

         1.   ASTM C 503-88 -- Standard Specification for Marble
              Building Stone (Exterior); most recent version.

         2.   ASTM C 920-87 -- Standard Specification for
              Elastomeric Joint Sealants; most recent version.

         3.   ASTM E 119-88 -- Standard Test Methods for Fire
              Tests of Building Construction and Materials; most
              recent version.

    B.   American National Standards Institute, Inc. (ANSI), 1430
         Broadway, New York, NY  10018.

         1.   ANSI A108.4-1985 -- Installation of Ceramic Tile
              with Organic Adhesives or Water Cleanable Tile
              Setting Epoxy Adhesives; most recent version.

         2.   ANSI A108.5-1985 -- Installation of Ceramic Tile
              with Dry-Set Portland Cement Mortar or Latex-
              Portland Cement Mortar; most recent version.

         3.   ANSI A108.10-1985 -- Installation of Grout in
              Tilework; most recent version.

         4.   ANSI A118.1-1985 -- American National Standard
              Specifications for Dry-Set Portland Cement Mortar;
              most recent version.

         5.   ANSI A118.3-1985 -- American National Standard
              Specifications for Chemical Resistant, Water
              Cleanable Tile Setting and Grouting Epoxy and Water
              Cleanable Tile Setting Epoxy Adhesive; most recent

         6.   ANSI A118.6-1985 -- American National Standard
              Specifications for Ceramic Tile Grouts; most recent

    C.   Tile Council of America, Inc. (TCA), P.O. Box 326,
         Princeton, NJ 08540

         1.   Handbook for Ceramic Tile Installation; most recent


    A.   Product Data: Manufacturer's technical information and
         installation instructions for materials required, except
         bulk materials.

    B.   Samples for Initial Selection Purposes: Manufacturer's
         color charts consisting of actual tiles or sections of
         tile showing full range of colors, textures and patterns
         available for each type of tile indicated. Include
         samples of grout and accessories involving color

    C.   Samples for Verification Purposes: Submit the following.

         1.   Samples for each type of tile and for each color
              and texture required, not less than 12 inches
              square, on plywood or hardboard backing and

         2.   Full-size samples for each type of trim and
              accessory and for each color.

         3.   Six inch long samples of stone thresholds.

    D.   Control Sample Panels:

         1.   The Contractor shall clean a 4'-0" by 4'-0" bay of
              the existing ceramic floor tile on each different
              color for review by the Contracting Officer's
              representative. Locations of sample floor bays to
              be selected by the Contracting Officer's
              representative. These cleaned ceramic floor tile
              bays are to be protected by the Contractor and will
              be used for matching replacement ceramic floor

         2.   The Contractor shall prepare a sample bay,
              approximately 2'-0" by 2'-0" of replaced ceramic
              floor tile. The sample bay should be made to match
              the existing cleaned adjacent ceramic floor tile in
              all respects. The Contracting Officer's
              representative shall select the location for the
              sample of replaced ceramic floor tile.


    A.   The general objective of the installation of new ceramic
         floor tile is to recreate the original design intent of
         the primary historic spaces. The original design drawings
         are to be used for the installation patterns.

    B.   The general objective for replacement of ceramic floor
         tiles is to match the existing floor color, pattern and
         the existing adjacent floor tiles, and all other respects
         to that the new floor tiles are not visible in the
         overall view of the floors.

    C.   The general objectives for cleaning the ceramic floor
         tiles are to remove dirt and grime from the surface
         without damaging the underlying material, and to give all
         the flooring a clean uniform appearance.

    D.   Contractor: The work of this section shall be performed
         by an installer who is certified in writing by the
         ceramic floor tile manufacturer as qualified to complete
         the scope of work described. Work in this section shall
         be performed by a Contractor possessing a minimum of
         three (3) years of specialized experience in the
         installation of ceramic floor tiles. The Contractor shall
         submit to the Contracting Officer's representative
         references of previous work justifying the firm's
         experience. The Contracting Officer's representative
         reserves the right to approve or disapprove the use of
         the Contractor contingent on the firm's experience.

    E.   In the event that a Contractor wishes to modify any
         methods specified in this section, he shall submit his
         proposal in writing for consideration and review. The
         Contracting Officer's representative will have the right
         to ask for samples before final approval. Any such
         modifications or changes shall be at no additional cost
         to the Government.


    A.   Environmental Requirements:  

         1.   Maintain environmental conditions and protect work
              during and after installation to comply with
              referenced standards and manufacturer's printed

         2.   Vent temporary heaters to exterior to prevent
              damage to tile work from carbon dioxide build-up.

         3.   Maintain temperatures at not less than 50 F in
              tiled areas during installation and for seven days
              after completion, unless higher temperatures are
              required by referenced installation standards or
              manufacturer's instructions.


    A.   Extra Materials: Deliver stock of maintenance materials
         to the Government. Furnish maintenance materials from the
         same lot as materials installed and enclosed in
         protective packaging with appropriate identifying labels.
         1.   Furnish not less than two percent maintenance stock
              for each type, color, pattern and size of tile
              product installed.



    A.   Dow Chemical Company
         P.O. Box 994
         Midland, MI  48686-0994


    A.   ANSI Standard for Tile Installation Materials: Comply
         with the ANSI standard that is referenced along with
         those products and materials that are indicated for
         setting and grouting.

    B.   Colors, Textures and Patterns: For tile, grout and other
         products requiring selection of colors, surface textures
         or other appearance characteristics, provide products to
         match the original ceramic tiles in the building.

    C.   Factory Blending: For tile exhibiting color variations
         within the ranges selected during sample submittals,
         blend tile in factory and package accordingly so that
         tile units taken from one package will show the same
         range in colors as those taken from other packages and
         will match approved samples.

    D.   Setting Materials:

         1.   Dry-Set Portland Cement Mortar: ANSI A118.1.

         2.   Water-Cleanable, Tile-Setting Epoxy Adhesive: ANSI

    E.   Grouting Materials:

         1.   Sand-Portland Cement Grout: ANSI A108.10.

         2.   Latex-Portland Cement Grout: Comply with ANSI
              A118.6 for the following composition:

              a.   Pre-packaged dry grout mix incorporating dry
                   polymer additive in the form of a re-
                   emulsifiable powder to which only water is
                   added at the project site.

    F.   Elastomeric Sealants:

         1.   Compatibility: Provide sealants, joint fillers and
              other related materials that are compatible with
              one another and with joint substrates under
              conditions of service and application, as
              demonstrated by testing and field experience.

         2.   Silicone Sealant: ASTM C 920; Type S; Grade NS;
              Class 25; Uses NT, G, A and as applicable to non-
              porous joint substrates; formulated with fungicide,
              intended for sealing interior ceramic tile joints
              and other non-porous substrates that are subject to
              in-service exposures of high humidity and
              temperature extremes.

    G.   Mixing Mortar and Grout:

         1.   Mix mortar and grout to comply with requirements of
              referenced standards and manufacturers to produce
              mortar and grout of uniform quality with optimum
              performance characteristics for application

         2.   The grout is to match the original existing grout
              in dimension, color and texture. Do not match to
              dirty grout.

    H.   Tile Cleaner: Non-abrasive household cleaner such as
         "Soft Scrub,"(Dow Chemical Company), or approved equal.

         1.   Product should be specifically acceptable to tile
              manufacturer and grout manufacturer for application
              indicated and as recommended by National Tile
              Promotion Federation or Ceramic Tile Institute.



    A.   Carefully remove cracked or otherwise damaged ceramic
         tile without damaging surrounding intact tile or damaging
         the substrate.

    B.   Require installer to inspect subfloor surfaces to
         determine that they are satisfactory.  A satisfactory
         subfloor surface is defined as one that is smooth and
         free from cracks., holes, ridges and other defects
         impairing performance or appearance.

    C.   Work shall not proceed until the subfloor surfaces have
         had all dirt and foreign matter removed and satisfy the
         manufacturer's printed instructions on preparation of
         substrate for new ceramic tile.

    D.   Blending: For tile exhibiting color variations within the
         ranges selected, verify that tile has been blended in the
         factory and packaged accordingly so that tile units taken
         from one package will show the same range in colors as
         those taken from other packages and will match approved
         samples. If not factory blended, either return to the
         manufacturer or blend tiles at the project site before


    A.   Surface Preparation:

         1.   Prior to tile replacement, clean all existing floor
              tiles to be cleaned with a non-abrasive household

         2.   Remove all cleaner residue by wiping the surfaces
              with a damp sponge using clean potable water.

         3.   Wipe dry.


    A.   ANSI Tile Installation Standards: Comply with applicable
         parts of the ANSI A108 series for tile installation
         standards included under "American National Standard
         Specifications for the Installation of Ceramic Tile" for
         the type of setting and grouting materials and methods

    B.   TCA Installation Guidelines: TCA "Handbook for Ceramic
         Tile Installation" comply with TCA installation methods
         indicated or, if not otherwise indicated, as applicable
         to installation conditions shown.

    C.   Extend tile work into recesses and under or behind
         equipment and fixtures to form a complete covering
         without interruptions. Terminate work neatly at junctions
         within the original tiles.

    D.   Accurately form intersections and returns. Perform
         cutting and drilling of tile without marring visible
         surfaces. Carefully grind cut edges of tile abutting
         trim, finish or built-in items for straight, aligned
         joints. Fit tile closely to electrical outlets, piping,
         fixtures and other penetrations so that plates, collars
         or covers overlap tile.

    E.   Joint Patterns: Lay tile joints in grid pattern to match
         the original ceramic tile pattern. Provide uniform joint
         widths to match existing widths.

    F.   Expansion Joints: Locate expansion joints and other
         sealant filled joints including control, contraction and
         isolation joints where originally shown.

    G.   Grout tile to comply with the requirements of the
         following installation standards:

         1.   Ceramic tile grouts (sand-Portland cement, dry-set,
              commercial Portland cement and latex-Portland
              cement grouts): ANSI A108.10.

         2.   To match original cleaned grout.


    A.   Cleaning New Ceramic Tile: Upon completion of replacement
         and grouting, clean all ceramic tile surfaces so they are
         free of foreign matter.

         1.   Remove latex-Portland cement grout residue from
              tile as soon as possible.

    B.   Finished Tile Work: Leave finished installation clean and
         free of cracked, chipped, broken, unbonded or otherwise
         defective tile work.


    A.   When recommended by tile manufacturer, apply a protective
         coat of neutral protective cleaner to completed tile
         work. Protect installed tile work with kraft paper or
         other heavy covering during construction period to
         prevent staining, damage and wear.

         1.   Prohibit foot and wheeled traffic from using tiled
              floors at least seven days after grouting is

         2.   Before final inspection, remove protective
              coverings and rinse all tile surfaces with a
              neutral cleaner.

                         END OF SECTION
Last Reviewed 2012-02-24