QUESTIONSaltillo Tile Flood Damage - I found your web site while searching on the Internet for tile problems. I am hoping you can give me some advice. Our home was flooded by Hurricane Ike in Sept 08. The saltillo tile in our kitchen had water on it for several days and the tile started popping up. The insurance company said it is not covered for replacement cause flood water does not damage tile! The tile is over 10 years old and we never had a problem with it until our home flooded. Is it true that flood water that gets under your tile or foundation cannot harm the tile?
Thank you for any help you could give me.
ANSWERANSWER - Ceramic tile is generally fairly resistant to water unless there are some other underlying problems.
Saltillo tiles are very absorbing tiles and some are made better than others in terms of their lasting performance. The tiles should not debond because they were subjected to water, unless there was a hydrostatic condition. That means when the water source level is higher than the tile surface and it comes up from under the tile causing a pressure that causes the tile to debond. That is rare, but it can happen. Normally in floods the water comes from above the tile.
The tiles may not have been installed properly or over the proper substrate and in that case if it were subjected to a flood it may have caused the tiles to debond, where if there hadn't been a flood they would have stayed attached.
The only way to determine why the tiles debonded is to intrusively remove tiles of various conditions and investigate the problem. We do have inspectors located near most markets nationwide and can perform an investigation to to determine the problem and how to remediate it.
As forensic investigators we do charge for our time during the whole process . Depending on the extent of your problem, it may or may not be practical for you to employ our full forensic services. Good Luck!