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We live in San Francisco and are refurbishing our town house. We would like to use marble on our kitchen floor, but are concerned it may crack during an earthquake. Is there any way to install it that would minimize the cracking?

There are several fracture membranes that can be installed to help minimize cracking. These membranes are rubber or plastic-based and are designed to absorb some shock. However, you will not totally eliminate cracking if the tremor is severe.... Read More

Can cracks in terrazzo be repaired? How?

Yes, cracks can be repaired. Depending on the width of the crack, it can be filled with a polyester resin. If the crack is small, clean it thoroughly with acetone, making sure to remove all dirt; a dental pick may prove useful here. After the crack... Read More

How do I repair cracks in terrazzo?

Small cracks in a terrazzo floor can be repairs as follows: Clean the crack with acetone, making sure to remove all dirt, old wax and other debris. A dental pick is helpful in removing old wax buildup. After the crack is cleaned you will notice that... Read More

My granite floor appears to be developing cracks beneath its surface. These cracks do not go all the way through the tile, but can be seen only in a bright light and only at certain angles. It almost looks as if they’re cracking from the bottom

The condition you are describing is called compression cracking. It is caused by movement of the substrate to which the granite is attached. If the granite tile is set over a plywood floor supported by joists, movement in the floor may be responsible... Read More

We have been in our new house for three months and are starting to see cracks developing in the marble floor. The contractor told us these were “settling cracks.” Will this continue to be a problem? Can the cracks be repaired, or should we replace th

Settling cracks are common in newly constructed homes. These cracks may continue to develop for over a year. I would suggest replacing the tiles after approximately one year, or until the settling subsides. Be sure to purchase extra tiles—and... Read More