1. Visiting from the US? Why not try DIYnot.US instead? Click here to continue to DIYnot.US.
    Dismiss Notice

Self Levelling Fail :(

Discussion in 'DIY Disasters' started by Amyrunner, 3 Sep 2018.

  1. Amyrunner

    Amyrunner

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2018
    Messages:
    4
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    My husband and I thought we would try self levelling a small wet room (with existing concrete floor) to fit a shower cubicle and lay some vinyl on top. We primed the floor then after a couple of hours drying we mixed the Mapei Ultraplan 3240 from screwfix in two batches (probably first fail) and then laid. It seemed to go on well, although the batches were slightly different looking. Fast forward to 24 hours later and half the room the compound is either still damp and not completely hard or has a white powder film and can be scraped off easily :(
    Any advice on what to do would be appreciated as we are currently without a wet room and I'm 7 months pregnant!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. John D v2.0

    John D v2.0

    Joined:
    26 Aug 2016
    Messages:
    5,609
    Thanks Received:
    750
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    If it's cement based without accelerator it wouldn't go hard so quickly. What does the label say for setting time? Was the dry material stored correctly and in date, hasn't got damp or been stored in damp conditions? Did the wet mixture dry out too quickly after mixing? Needs to set first and then dry, but it sounds like it's still wet which means it's still gaining strength
     
  3. SFK

    SFK

    Joined:
    23 Jul 2010
    Messages:
    1,017
    Thanks Received:
    231
    Location:
    Oxfordshire
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Amy,
    Instructions say "bonding time" is 3 days (which is when I presume it is fully hard):
    http://www.mapei.com/public/GB/products/4048-ultraplanrenovationscreed3240-uk.pdf
    So you may still be okay.

    Big thing with this material is exact water addition of 4.25 to 4.50 liters per bag (did you do it by eye or use a measuring jug?), and good mixing (did you mix by hand or use a drill and paddle mixer?)

    But as said, leave another day with door and windows open and see if gets better.
    SFK
     
    Last edited: 3 Sep 2018
  4. Amyrunner

    Amyrunner

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2018
    Messages:
    4
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi,

    We used a measuring jug with half the bag, and mixed with a drill and paddle mixer, but perhaps didn't mix enough as there was some stuck on the bottom? The darker area by the door is hard and seems set(from batch 2), but areas further away are still soft (I can make a dent with fingernail) and they are damp. The areas further away from the door flake quite easily, so unsure if they will get harder? It has been about 27 hours now since laying it. I guess we could give it a day to see if it improves?
     
  5. Amyrunner

    Amyrunner

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2018
    Messages:
    4
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    We bought it from screwfix the same day so it was stored ok from our end, but cannot be sure what they did to it. The bag had tape in the corner so may not have been stored too well? The mixture didn't dry out that quickly and some patches are still damp now and a bit soft. Someone told us it was a DIY job, but thinking now we should have got someone to do it who had some experience!
     
  6. wgt52

    wgt52

    Joined:
    25 Apr 2016
    Messages:
    480
    Thanks Received:
    93
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    SLC Drying time is typically 48 to 72 hours. Don't rush it. Did you get all the air bubbles out? That can make it feel soft and delay the drying time.
     
  7. Amyrunner

    Amyrunner

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2018
    Messages:
    4
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi, yes there didn't seem to be any air bubbles. It has been about 48 hours now and is definitely harder than yesterday. It seems quite easy to sand down in places though and I would have thought it would be harder to sand?
     
  8. Garyheating

    Garyheating

    Joined:
    7 Apr 2019
    Messages:
    1
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom

    Hi Amy, did this ever resolve? Same problem here!
     
  9. gehame

    gehame

    Joined:
    1 Dec 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Location:
    Manchester
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi. I had someone put down a self levelling mix my workroom floor in the basement on 1st April 2019 following a successful tanking job which I did myself. When I first saw the finished job I was bit surprised that there was a swirling pattern on the floor with some parts clearly cement grey and others looking line white sand. While cleaning up after sanding and painting the ceiling, I notice a bit of paper had become stuck to the floor so I pulled on it and to my surprise a piece of cement was pulled up with it. This made me wonder if the floor was actually sound so tested an inconspicuous bit with a screw driver and it seemed OK. Having completed painting the walls all the woodwork today, I again took up all the drop cloths to clean up prior to painting the floor, to find that it had developed fine cracks radiating from the centre of the room to the walls! As the floor has not been subject to any stress I wonder whether compound has shrunk as it has been drying out. The irony is that this compound was laid on a sound concrete floor and its function was solely to fill small surface defects that had developed over the years. After the reading the original post on this and suspecting that the mix was to blame, I tested several areas and found that while the cementinous bits were hard the sandy bits were soft and could marked easily. However, the cracks radiate from a predominantly cementinous area. So what is the problem, not enough mixing, to much water? Any comments please. More importantly what can be done about it?
     
  10. opps

    opps

    Joined:
    16 Jun 2006
    Messages:
    3,583
    Thanks Received:
    492
    Location:
    London
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    I have only used self levelling once. I made the mistake of hand mixing it in the garden and then made the mistake of carrying it up stairs to the room where I was using it. In the meantime it had started to settle in the bucket.

    Three applications later, it still ain't level.

    I have now resigned myself to living with it.
     
Loading...

Share This Page