QUESTIONI'm pouring a 4' x 6' slab of concrete, I was wondering if after pouring can I put 12" ceramic tiles on it and kind of "settle" them down flush with the concrete? As it cures with the tiles in place it'll harden around the tiles securing them?
ANSWERANSWER - It is possible to embed 12x12 inch ceramic tiles into a freshly poured concrete slab, but there are a lot factors to consider. It is recommended to let the concrete cure for 28 days before adhering the tile to it.
The concrete being poured for the slab has to have the right design mix, it has to be thick enough, and it should have proper rebar reinforcement to limit shrinkage and prevent cracking. It should cure for at least 14 days before to allow it to complete much of its shrinkage, but you have to use a proper ANSI A118.4 or .15 thin-set mortar that allows for the tile to be installed that soon over the concrete slab.
In theory, you could apply the thin-set mortar over the back of the tile and then embed the tile into the fresh concrete, but it isn't recommended because if the concrete cracks so will the tile.