Cheap floor patch/leveler

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I'm doing a test with Ardex Feather Finish.
There are a lot of levelers out there and I'm doing a bit of leveling on a 21' by 15' slab in a living room. Carpet came out today and CoreTec vinyl laminate will be replacing it. It's gonna float, not be glued down.
Worst low area looks to be just over 1/4" maybe 3/8" at the very deepest. (less than a 4 foot span)
Most problem areas are about 1/8" to less than 1/4" I have a high spot to grind down to correct a lot of this problem slab so that will help a lot.
Just curious if anyone has modified fillers. I mixed up some Feather Finish tonight. 2 parts Feather Finish to one part water, then mixed it with a drill. Then I added 2 parts clean silica sand, and mixed that in well. For kicks, and to add a little 'trowlability' and maybe some additional bonding, I added a very small drizzle of acrylic admix liquid to the recipe.
I figure that 2 parts Ardex and 2 parts clean sand cuts the cost by almost 50% and since it's never going to have a flooring material glued down directly, it's a living room, so no big deal.
..... a quarter for your thoughts.
3 hrs later as I type, the modified filler is setting up nicely, (normally) and it was a partial bag that was opened 3 or more months ago........ not a newly opened bag.
 
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Jon

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I'm doing a test with Ardex Feather Finish.
There are a lot of levelers out there and I'm doing a bit of leveling on a 21' by 15' slab in a living room. Carpet came out today and CoreTec vinyl laminate will be replacing it. It's gonna float, not be glued down.
Worst low area looks to be just over 1/4" maybe 3/8" at the very deepest. Most problem areas are about 1/8" to less than 1/4" I have a high spot to grind down to correct a lot of this problem slab so that will help a lot.
Just curious if anyone has modified fillers. I mixed up some Feather Finish tonight. 2 pars Feather Finish to one part watter, then mixed it with a drill. Then I added 2 pars clean silica sand, and mixed that in well. For kicks, and to add a little 'trowlability' and maybe some additional bonding, I added a very small drizzle of acrylic admix liquid to the recipe.
I figure that 2 parts Ardex and 2 parts clean sand cuts the cost by almost 50% and since it's never going to have a flooring material glued down directly, it's no big deal.
..... a quarter for your thoughts.
I think I would be adding a lot more, maybe the at least the equal if not more of your acrylic admix liquid to give your silica sand some bonding as the sand does not have a "sticky" stuff like any engineered flooring product to prevent crumbling at a later date. Cheap insurance
 

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Kharrs wood floors recommends leveling low areas by screeding plain old sand into the low spots........ That can't crumble over time. It just sets there.
 

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This would be a first fill, Jon. Once 80% to 90% of the low spot gets filled, a screed with 100% Ardex would follow to finish it off smooth.
A second thin skim coat would be easier to accomplish and formed into a flat surface than a deeper pour in one shot. ....so being a floating (non adhered) floor, why not make the filler go farther?
 
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Me think crazy stuff all the time. :D
......all it's gotta do is harden. It's doing that quite well right now.
Adding more water to the Ardex would weaken it, but since the sand isn't porous, no additional water is added to the increased amount of sand. I mixed the Ardex as it says to. Consistency of my mix is not so unusual. My test mix looks good. How well it spreads as a filler, I'll find out tomorrow.
 

Jon

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Me think crazy stuff all the time. :D
......all it's gotta do is harden. It's doing that quite well right now.
Adding more water to the Ardex would weaken it, but since the sand isn't porous, no additional water is added to the increased amount of sand. I mixed the Ardex as it says to. Consistency of my mix is not so unusual. My test mix looks good. How well it spreads as a filler, I'll find out tomorrow.
I was just thinking the milk would bond everything together as it would stick to your sand whereas water will not stick
 

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Sets up normally. I guess how easily it trowels will tell me what I need to know. That, and how and thin it will spread. I did it before using Webcrete 95, but never with Feather Finish.
This small test patch I spread out says it would work just as well as straight FF, with the exception of feathering out. It would reduce the bags needed by half.
From the way it sets up, I wouldn't be afraid to do this under vinyl flooring. It of course would need a second coat with straight FF so it would feather out.
 

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The primer makes it stick to the substrate. You could go further and do primer + staple down wire or composite mesh for reinforcement depending on the load on the floor.
 

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I didn't use much additive. (Durabond Acrylic admix) Feather Finish sticks really well with a small amount. ...10 or 15%
How deep would you go before adding mesh? I figured that isn't really needed until you get really deep.
What concoctions have you experimented with? Feather Finish has a two part primer that's so expensive it seem like it ought to be used on the space shuttle. It has time issues too because you need to prime, then let it dry.............. and then apply the filler. Crazy time-wise for it's purpose. I did a test a while back and using acrylic admix instead of water and Feather Finish. It bonds and cures just like any other floor patch for skim coating or bonding using admix. Why are they so anal about their special primers?
 
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