The Frightening Causes of Tile Damage

When you think about tile damage, you probably imagine a heavy object falling to the ground and cracking the ceramic in two. While physical damage is a common cause of tile damage, there are many others. If you’re a property owner, you might be unaware of the more frightening causes of tile damage hiding where you least suspect.

Water damage is the common factor of unexpected tile damage. However, tiles react differently based on the amount of water, the time exposed, and the construction materials surrounding the tile.

Gradual Leak

A gradual leak describes a slow trickle of water that gets behind the tiles. This is more common around the edges of a tiled area or in places where there’s a crack between the tile and the wall. Tile around the bathtubs in older houses are especially susceptible to gradual water damage.

When water slips through a crack, it can get into the drywall. Wet drywall puffs up like rice. When the drywall expands, it displaces anything attached to it. The grout cracks and the tiles loosen.

When you look at the damage, you find that a simple crack between the tile and the tub is now a drywall repair and a complete retiling. You may also discover mold and mildew in the space behind the wall, surviving off the water that comes through the cracks.


Floodwaters wreak havoc. They destroy carpeting, wiring, and create a breeding ground for mold. With proper installation, tile floors can be one of the few things that don’t need maintenance after a flood. However, improper installation and tile affixed to wood can create big problems.

Tile placed on wood is more common in older houses, especially those with basements. When the wood gets soaked, it swells up and can move the tiles, just like drywall. While concrete installations pose little risk if done correctly, improper bonding can cause loosened tiles after a flood. Worse, these loose tiles become a breeding ground for mold and mildew. You might not realize how bad it is until you lift a wobbling tile.

If your insurance agency denies your valid claims or doesn’t offer you a fair payout, you might have a case. If you’d like an experienced Florida property insurance attorney from Strems Law Firm to evaluate your claim, please send us an email or call (786) 661-3111.

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