|Intellectual Property of Perle Noire (Singapore) www.PhuaChuKang.com 2009.
In collaboration with R.I.D.S. (Renovations & Interior Designs Singapore)
Tiles popping! An epidemic?
Have you experienced this in your home?
You and your family were sound asleep only to be awaken by
thunderous cracking noises and when you came out to your living
room to investigate, to your dismay and shock, your beautiful and
almost invincible flooring has popped!
But why and how can this happen?
Tiles or other hard stoned floorings are supposedly the longest lasting type of floorings! Well, everything has a lifespan.
Even the air that we breath doesnt last forever. But let me tell you this. It is NOT the tiles that is the main problem or the
cause of this hideous event. It is the air below it.
Yes air. Air that fills up spaces anywhere and everywhere. Air in the slightest cracks between sand and cement. Air that,
as you may remember in school, that expands and contracts especially so when days are extremely hot and then
extremely cold the next! And what happens when there is no more space for the air to expand? You guessed it.
It breaks or busts its way through!
Of course, the worksmanship when these tiles were first laid plays a substantial part in this mishap. To save on costs,
some ''Low Bidded Contractors'' would resort to using more loose sand then strong bonding cement when installing tiles.
This will result in air pockets between the sand, cement and tiles.
Its truly a nighmare-ish experience aint it?!
If you haven't come across this or if you have never experience
this, let me tell you that this happens everywhere, every week!
This not only happens in a living room, it can happen anywhere.
In your kitchen, your bathroom, under your bed. Have you ever
seen tiles popping in the streets? On the pavements? I am pretty
sure you have. Yes, it can happen everywhere, and if you are not
careful, you might even trip on these loose tiles or cut yourselves
with em. Definitely a bummer if you have young children or babies
in the home. And yes, the weather plays a huge part in this
What to do when tiles pop?
a. Lay a large carpet or rug over the affected area so that
loose shards of tiles will not injure you or your loved ones.
b. Avoid the area and do NOT walk on the popped
tile / carpeted areas. Use loose furnitures to safeguard and
block that area so others will not cross it.
c. Call in a professional.
Do NOT try to remove the tiles yourself!
d. If yours is a new BTO home, then call HDB or the town
council to come take a look and rectify the problem.
d. To your preference, a matching tile design to
that area will be fixed in place of the broken ones.
Dont get your hopes up just yet. If your tiles are old
ones, most probably, matching tiles would be non
existent in the market anymore. Would you settle
for a patch that differs or would you rather have a
nice singular design for the whole area?
e. He will then carefully remove the broken tiles, as
well as other hollow areas surrounding the popped
portion and according to your decision, either
cement that part to the same level as other
surrounding tiles, (and you lay a carpet over that
area when cement dries to save costs),
or lay exact looking tiles in place of the broken
ones, (if he manages to find it, highly unlikely) or
similar looking ones that would make your room
look like it was patched up by Dr Frankenstein...
or he would be LIKE ME and would advice the use of Laminated Wood Flooring to overlay the whole room after
cement and levelling is done. Now this would be the best way to do it. Not entirely that expensive, but at least the
whole nightmare and remnants of it ever happening will be locked away in the past and you can look forward to
brighter days with beautiful flooring again.
How to fix this problem?
a. Well firstly the expert will come in and asses the damage. Will removing the pop tiles and repairing that affected areas
be sufficient or are the tiles surrounding that area loose also and just waiting for the worse possible time to pop?
b. He will then advice you on the situation at hand. Most often then not, a larger area then just the popped areas will
have to be removed. He will have to carefully knock around the affected area or even the whole room gently with his
knuckles and see if the flooring surrounding the core are hollow in sound when knocked on. This takes a certain level of
c. Upon attaining more knowledge on the damage and the measurements for that area and nature of works, he is ready
to quote you.
Article written by Mr Bhai Angullia
Managing Director of LaminateFlooring.sg
Watch this video . Tiles POPPING in HDB home. LIVE footage.
Well this concludes my story today. I hoped that you guys have enjoyed reading about this and hope that you guys
check our other articles too. PhuaChuKang.com promises to bring you the best news, facts, tips and knowledge on
anything and everything in the renovation and construction industry to better equip and prepare our readers in
unfortunate events or circumstances, as well as give you more in depth knowledge on things reno related. We are
confident that PhuaChuKang.com will sit well in everyones hearts and minds. Till next time!