QUESTIONMarble Tile Failure - Why is my Marble Tile Tenting (lifting Up - debonding) - I WOULD LIKE SOME INFORMATION ON A PROBLEM I HAVE WITH MY MARBLE FLOOR IN MY APARTMENT. AS YOU KNOW THIS WINTER IN MIAMI WAS THE COLDEST IN 20 YEARS. WE HAD NIGHTS OF 29 TO 39 DEGREES. ON THE COLDEST NIGHT OF JANUARY MY FLOOR AT ABOUT 2 AM POPPED LIKE A FIRE CRAKER AN KEPT ON POOPING DURING THE NIGHT. MY TILES WERE UPLIFTED IN SEVERAL AREAS OF THE APARTMENT. I LIVE IN THE 14TH FLOOR THE BLDG IT HAS POST TENSION WIRES.
COULD THIS HAD BEEN CAUSED BY THE FLOOR CONTRACTING BY THE COLD TEMPERATURES.
ANSWERANSWER - First of all, if your marble tile floor was installed correctly then it should not have tented up (lifted up) or debonded.
When there is a failure it generally is not due to one deficiency, but rather is due to many deficiencies compounding the situation and leading to the failure.
The cold weather certainly could have contributed to the problem, but is not likely the primary factor to your marble failure. Certainly the fact that your marble tiles were installed over a suspended concrete slab on the 14th floor and the concrete floor has post-tensioned cables within it are likely contributing to the failure. There are special installation methods recommended over post-tensioned slabs.
The likely primary deficiency is that the marble tiles were not bonded well enough to the floor substrate for any number of reasons. If the tiles were bonded well then their adhesive would have restrained the tiles from moving when subjected to the apparent stress and the marbles would have cracked rather than debonded. Further likely compounding and contributing to the problem is you probably don't have adequate expansion joints (movement joints) within the tile installation and at its perimeters.
To determine the cause of the failure and to determine how to properly remediate the problem would require an intrusive forensic inspection. We do have an inspectors throughout North America and can perform an inspection for you if it is practical. For more information on our inspection services visit www.CTaSC.com and go to the Failure Inspections page for details. Good Luck.