Liquid Nails vs. Mortar for Tile?

Discussion in 'Workshop and Home Improvement' started by EricG, Dec 25, 2007.

  1. EricG

    EricG

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,813
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Had this conversation with a guy at work the other day. I was talking about a bunch of tile I have to set eventually, and he piped in about using liquid nails instead of thinset mortar. I'd never heard of it before, but I'm not sure I see a big downside other then the cost.

    It would probably remain more flexible then mortar, no worry about mixing it right, using it before it cooks off, very minimal cleanup, etc. It would certainly cost more - but probably not significant for smaller jobs. Chipping out and replacing a broken tile could be an even bigger PITA I guess.

    I've set plenty of tile before - I have no problem working with mortar. Just wondering if anybody has any comments/experience/suggestions on the idea?
     
  2. -Spike-

    -Spike-

    Joined:
    May 26, 2005
    Messages:
    6,164
    Location:
    Phoenix
    Research 'mastic'. It is an adhesive that you trowel on, made for tile installation. However, cement (thinset) is the best adhesive for tile in most applications. It is not compressible, not affected by moisture, and bonds better than glues.

    -Spike
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2007
  3. splitshot

    splitshot SILVER Star

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2006
    Messages:
    5,640
    Location:
    Podunk, Arizona
    Omigrip, great product.

    I used it to set the slate in my shower.
    omnigrip.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2007
  4. RHINO

    RHINO

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Messages:
    3,759
    Location:
    valley of the sunstroke, AZ
    liquid nails will definately work but it can be troublesome getting the tiles even. i would strongly suggest a mastic product like onmigrip or any of the others. the mastic goes on with a notched trowel just like regular thinset so you'll get uniform results.
     
  5. -Spike-

    -Spike-

    Joined:
    May 26, 2005
    Messages:
    6,164
    Location:
    Phoenix
    Before you get all giddy and buy a pail of mastic for a shower install, read the following and do some research- Ceramic Tile: Mastic vs. Thinset III This is the first of many articles that come up with a Google search of 'tile mastic'.

    You really can't go wrong with a latex-modified thinset- water actually makes it stronger. Mastic is great when tiling stuff like commercial bathroom walls where the base is floor tile laid with thinset, then mastic makes the walls go fast, but it's a compromise when used in a wet location.

    -Spike
     
  6. EricG

    EricG

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,813
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Thanks for the link - interesting stuff. I'm going to stick with thinset when I get to that bit. Tile set in mortar has a long long history.
     
  7. bigbrowndog

    bigbrowndog

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2005
    Messages:
    1,663
    Location:
    N.Q. australia
    Liquid nails is not for tiling as it is not water proof being an acrylic glue [ Oz type anyway]. If you are only doing a couple of tiles you could use silicone but the best all round tile adhesive is a rubber base bedding agent. Mastic in Oz is used as a gap filling agent not as an adhesive [ maybe a different terminology].
    Ceramic Tile Adhesives
    http://www.constructionchemicals.com.au/PDF/Cemflex.pdf
     
  8. RHINO

    RHINO

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Messages:
    3,759
    Location:
    valley of the sunstroke, AZ
    where did all this shower talk come from?? EricG are you doing a shower?
     
  9. EricG

    EricG

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,813
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I will be, in a couple of months - mortar bed & tile walls. Also have some floor to do.
     
  10. Cookiemonster

    Cookiemonster

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2005
    Messages:
    597
    Location:
    CA Bay Area
    Thinset/mastic is the preferable method due to strength, reliable adhesion for exspansion & contraction (due to temperature gradiants). Liquid nails works great on tile in places such as an access doors for jet tubs and steam showers.
     

Share This Page