One of the most consistent installation replacement or repair claims made in the tile industry centers around problems associated with the lack of accounting for movement of a building and how it affects the tile assembly. The National Tile Contractors Association felt the issue is so signifiant to tile contractors that it issued a position statement that will be published in its 2017 edition of the NTCA Reference Manual. At the heart of the concern is who bears the responsibility for designing, specifying or locating movement joints in a tile installation. It points out that special attention to method EJ 171, located in the Tile Council of North America Handbook for the Installation of Ceramic and Stone tile, should be considered.
The position statement will be made available to all NTCA contractor members to include in documentation and correspondence. Its intent is to point out that it is beyond the scope and ability of a tile contractor to properly design and specify movement accommodation, for either commercial or residential tile construction projects.
Tile Contractors and their installers should be aware of EJ 171 and its requirements, and should use the position statement to request in writing where the movement joints should be located. They should use this method to point out to the building owner or design professional that the tile industry recommends that movement joints be installed every 20 to 25 feet in each direction in interior applications,and every 8 to 12 feet in each direction on exterior projects. If interior jobs are exposed to direct sunlight or moisture, it should be treated as an exterior project and have movement joints located every 8 to 12 feet in each direction.
The NTCA recommends that the tile contractor take the responsibility to point out the requirements of EJ 171 before they begin the tile work and to not take on unnecessary liability by proceeding with work until movement accommodation is addressed.
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