How to Replace Damaged Marble Floor Tiles?


A preferred construction and interior design material worldwide, marble is known for its long history of use and its widespread use in numerous mansions, monuments and historic buildings around the world attests to its popularity at nearly every stage of history. There are marble quarries all throughout the world. Stone is the perfect material for flooring applications in the building sector because of its natural beauty and vivid colors.

Flooring is a popular application for marble, and marble floor tile is a relatively porous and soft stone that is likely to chip or crack if something heavy falls on it. Plus sometimes, cracks and weak spots in the stone can cause cracks or cause the tile to crack prematurely. Anything can cause this to happen, from being hit by a falling object to constant pressure from the legs of heavy furniture. But you don’t have to live with defects or replace your entire floor. Instead, you can remove damaged marble floor tiles and replace them with new ones. This will require obtaining a suitable replacement of similar size and color.

The difficulty of this restoration process can vary depending on whether the floor was installed using a traditional bed of mortar or the more modern method of using a thin-set adhesive. In either case, the procedure is very similar to replacing tile, or any form of natural stone floor tile. It involves breaking out damaged tile, prying or gouging out the tile and mortar, and then inserting new tile and grouting the joints.

However, this shouldn’t be a major concern as any cracks or nicks in the marble tile floor can be easily repaired without spending too much.

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Table of Contents


I. What do you need to prepare before replacing marble floor tiles?

If you’re lucky, you’ll keep some replacement marble floor tiles from the original installation. This is by far the best option as the tile will match the current floor very well. If you don’t have any tiles left, you can purchase replacement tiles from the original source. This can be difficult because marble is a natural material and each batch has a unique look. Popular colors and patterns tend to change over time. If you don’t keep replacement tiles, you may have to do some research to find tiles that closely match the original tiles.

Marble floors are an expensive thing and it is never a good idea to completely replace marble floor tiles or slabs due to minor cracks or chips. If damage occurs, you can patch the broken pieces or chips back into their place on the marble floor. This is also easy to do with just the help of something mentioned below:

1. Equipment/tools

  • Carbide tipped grout saw (or Dremel tool with grout blade)
  • Goggles
  • Working gloves
  • Nail set
  • Hammer
  • Masonry chisel
  • Putty knife
  • Medium grit sandpaper
  • Foam brush
  • 1/4″ notched spatula
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Rubber hammer
  • Wet cloth
  • Dry cloth
  • Old screwdriver
  • Grout float
  • Grout sponge
  • 2×4 scrap

2. Materials

  • Leveling agent (if required)
    Replacing marble floor tiles
  • Marble sealant
  • Thin-set mortar or tile mosaic mortar
  • Plastic tile spacers
  • Tile grout (color to match original grout color)
  • Grout sealant

II. The distribution guide for replacing marble floor tiles

Step 1: Remove marble tile grout

Using a carbide-tipped grout saw or a power tool with a grout-grinding blade, carefully remove grout from the joints around the damaged tile. As you work, be careful not to damage the edges of adjacent tiles. At the same time, sand off as much of the grout as possible to make it easier to remove the tile itself.

★ Tips

1. Apply masking tape around the perimeter of the damaged tile. Leave the grout joints around the tiles exposed.

2. It is recommended to use a brush to remove dirt and small marble pieces in holes or crevices. You can also use a handheld vacuum to suck out particles that are deep in cracks and out of reach of brushes. Now remove dust particles from the area around the crack or notch.

Step 2: Break the tiles

After the grout is gone, break the tile into pieces that are easy to remove. Put a nail in the center of the marble floor tile, put a cold chisel or screwdriver into the cutout, start in the center of the tile, work your way out, and bang it with a hammer until one or more cracks start out from the center radiation. This may take multiple hits. Tap the chisel lightly with a hammer to loosen and remove the portion where the tile was cut.

★ Tips

Be wary of marble shards flying off the tiles; these shards are sharp enough to cut the skin. It is critical to wear goggles and gloves during this step.

Step 3: Remove the tiles

Insert the tip of a masonry chisel into one of the cracks, and lightly tap the end of the chisel with a hammer to bury it beneath the marble floor tile. When doing this, make sure to keep a slight angle to the chisel so that the tip doesn’t goug the underlying pad. You should be able to pry the tile away from the plywood or cement board underneath after the chisel is deep enough under the tile.

★ Tips

1. Any type of chisel can be used to remove marble floor tile chips, but wood chisels will dull quickly. If you use a wood chisel, choose an old tool that you’re ready to throw away. Masonry chisels, on the other hand, are made for this type of work.

2. Use a floor scraper with a sharp blade to remove any remaining flakes. Be careful not to damage surrounding tiles. To get rid of any dust or debris, vacuum the area.

Step 4: Scrape, smooth and flatten the pad

Use a chisel and putty knife to lift, goug and scrape away as much marble floor tile and adhesive or mortar as possible. The effort required depends on the material used to lay the tile. Scraping cement board or plywood underlayment is relatively easy when installing with thin adhesive. But older installations may use a hard, cement-like mortar troweled on a metal lathe as the bed for the tiles, and with these you’ll need to put in considerable effort to smooth the underlayment.

Once the underlayment is exposed, sand the surface area with medium-grade sandpaper to make it as smooth and level as possible. Any bumps or depressions can cause areas of weakness that make the replacement marble floor tiles more likely to crack. If necessary, you may need to use a leveler to repair dents or damage to the subfloor.

★ Tips

Pay attention to the type of mortar used to install the original marble floor tile. It is best to use a similar product for installing replacement tiles.

Step 5: Seal replacement tiles

Marble is a porous material, and replacement marble floor tiles can become soiled during installation if not properly prepared. Apply a thin coat of marble surface sealer to its surface using a foam brush. This will cover the tile with an imperceptible barrier, protecting it from being stained or damaged by mortar and adhesive.

Step 6: Apply mortar and place tiles

Mix a small amount of thin adhesive or tile mortar according to the manufacturer’s directions. Then use a 1/4″ notched trowel to apply a thin layer evenly directly to the back of the new marble floor tile being replaced. Cover the entire back of the tile with thin adhesive.

Set the marble floor tile into the mortar by pressing the tile firmly into place by hand. Insert plastic tile spacers in the corners to ensure the grout lines match the original grout joints.

Step 7: Level the floor

Place a straight-edged 2×4 scrap on the floor and tap it lightly with a rubber mallet to force the new marble floor tile to be flush with the surrounding floor. Move the 2×4 over the high spot and make sure to tap lightly to avoid cracking the tile.

Set the marble floor tile into the mortar by pressing the tile firmly into place by hand. Insert plastic tile spacers in the corners to ensure the grout lines match the original grout joints.

Step 8: Clean the tile surface

Use a damp cloth to remove any thin adhesive or mortar from the surface of the tile. Any adhesive that seeps along the grout line can be removed with an old screwdriver. The seams should be left blank to allow room for the grout.

Allow thin adhesive or marble floor tile mortar to set for 24 hours. After a few hours, to remove the plastic tile spacers from the corner joints between the tiles, use needle-nose pliers.

Step 9: Grout joints

Since grout can stain surrounding marble floor tile, you may want to seal the tile around the repaired area before grouting to replace the tile. If you do seal the surrounding tile, make sure to let the sealer dry completely before doing the grouting.

Mix the grout and allow it to set for the recommended time. When grout is ready, apply it to the joints around the replacement marble floor tile, using a grout float to press it into the joints. The edges of the tool will press the grout more firmly into the joint if you hold it at a little angle.

To remove extra grout from the tile’s surface, use a sizable damp grout sponge.

Immediately after the grout dries, wipe off the powdery residue with a soft, dry cloth.

Step 10: Seal the grout and floor

Grout joints must be sealed once the grout has dried, according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Use whatever sealer the grout manufacturer recommends and apply with a foam brush.

You can now seal the entire floor as a final touch. Every six to twelve months, the surface should normally be sealed. Sealing the entire floor may also assist the new replacement tile blend in with the surroundings because the sealer will slightly change the color of the marble.


III. Conclusion

Natural stone has the advantage of being easy to repair minor traces, which is not the case with many other flooring materials, especially engineered marble floor tile, however, we always recommend proper care and maintenance so that your stone floor will last for decades. new.

Installing marble floor tiles is a process that requires patience and precision, but with the right preparation and procedures, you can create stunningly beautiful floors. Make sure to measure and plan, have the proper tools and materials ready, and follow proper installation procedures before starting the installation. From cleaning the base, laying the tile adhesive, arranging the marble floor tiles, caulking, polishing and more, care and patience are key. The end result is a durable, dignified and satisfying marble floor tile floor that adds timeless beauty and value to your space.

For a series of marble products such as tiles, slabs and products, you can contact George Marble, a 20-year-old Chinese marble manufacturer and supplier, with high-quality products, warm service and on-time delivery, Having successfully built a highly satisfied global client base over the past few years, contact us today for a quote!

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