Breaking tiles in HDB flats: Why does it happen and how to get them fixed
In the first half of the first month of the year alone, there were at least a700 reported cases of dislodged or broken tiles in Housing and Development Board (HDB) and the third of the total number reported for the entire year of 2016.
There were about 2,000 cases of complaints sent to HDB annually for the past two consecutive years.
Here are the possible causes why tiles suddenly break or pop.
The sudden contraction or thermal expansion of the floor tiles yields to the slow loss of bond between the floor surface and the floor tiles over a long period of time, explained by the HDB official.
Frequent changes of the climate contribute to more stress stuck under the tiles thus causes loss of adhesion, she told.
Another reason is due to the cement base which did not meet the standard mixing wherein after the tiles pasted to the base, the adhesion was not really accurate, according to Mr Richard Lam, the general director of Wheelbase Builder.
In some cases, the tiles that were used were sub-standard therefore it was prone to breaking.
Mr Jayden a member of Hua Seng Contractors explained that the natural activities bring impact to the tiles and floor cement base surface thus this leads to the weaken surface and breaking of the tiles. With an increase moisture absorption, tiles will protrude and because of the changes under the tiles, a pressure is formed thus pushes the tiles up.
Property owner has to shoulder all flat maintenance which includes repairs for those due to deterioration of the materials or solely due to wear and tear, but the Housing for development Board will take part in the repair if the damage happened within the defect liability period and even will provide a goodwill repairs over broken or damaged tiles until 15 years.
For the properties above 15 years, the HDB will be in charge of the inspections and will help in the removal of disposal of the broken tiles. The owners may request repair contractors straight from the HDB and they will contact them in private transaction scheme.
Residents may call the hotline provided by the Housing for Development Board branch, 1800-225-5432 for some issues or concern or they may call the Emergency and Maintenance Services Unit.