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How to insulate a concrete porch?

Sorin Iacoban | Posted in Energy Efficiency and Durability on

I have a big outdoor porch and part of it is above an enclosed swimming pool room. It is concrete porch and has porcelain tile on 2 inches of cement subfloor [mud].

When it rains and during winter [snow in Michigan], I have problems in the swimming pool room.

How can I insulate the concrete slab if i remove the existing tile? I want to take the tile out, insulate[foam or something], waterproof the area, and reinstall something, either porcelain or some kind of slate or blue stone.

Is there some kind of product or method to insulate the concrete slab and then mud over and waterproof and install tile over?

Thank you.

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Replies

  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    Sorin,
    It sounds like you are describing an old-fashioned tile floor -- what is sometimes called a "mud job." But it's unclear from your question whether there is a concrete slab or wood framing under your tile floor.

    The short answer to your question is: yes, any floor can be insulated, as long as the porch can accommodate a change in thickness. However, there is no way anyone can give you useful advice from the description you have provided.

    You have implied that there are several problems here. Although you hint at "problems" in your swimming pool room, you don't tell us what these problems are. Do you have water entry from roof leaks? Do you have condensation? Do you have other problems?

    If you have a porch floor over enclosed space, it is certainly possible to insulate the porch floor, waterproof the porch floor, and then install stone or tile -- as long as thickening the floor doesn't create problems with doors or other architectural features. This is a major job, however, and one that is often botched by local builders who get in over their head.

    I suggest you consult with a local builder or architect to get an idea of your options.

  2. TJ Elder | | #2

    Sorin,

    You might get some useful advice here if you can elaborate on the construction and the nature of the problems, and/or provide photos. What you describe sounds somewhat exotic.

  3. Sorin Iacoban | | #3

    The porch is concrete slab,and over the concrete is mud and porcelain tileIf I take out the mud,I will have about 2 inches to work with trying to insulate the concrete and reinstall tile over.My question is what can i use to insulate? because is open porch no roof over,and winter time the swimming pool ceiling condenses a lot.And when it rain season wather gets through because i think it is not waterproofed and grout not sealed.What can I use over the concrete to insulate?because after that i will waterproof and then install new porcelain or blue stone.Thanks.

  4. Aj Builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | | #4

    2"? Not enough room. You need an onsite architect/engineer that is familiar with commercial pool and hotel design.

  5. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #5

    Sorin,
    You have a lot of problems:
    1. A leaky roof -- or, if I understand correctly, no roofing at all.

    2. An uninsulated pool room with a condensation problem.

    I have no idea what kind of builder would create the mess you have described, but you have more problems than we can solve over the Internet. You need a top-notch roofer to flash your roof and install a layer of roofing material. You may have to give up your patio to make that possible.

    Once that's done, it's possible to insulate your swimming-pool room from the interior. But you may not be pleased when you hear the cost of these repairs.

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