Installing Floor Tiles – A Primary Guide

Laying floor tiles is a job for a professional tiler or a very competent DIY fanatic because it often requires special tools and a certain amount of skill to get it looking perfect. Laying a sq. or rectangular formed tile could appear relatively simple but the difficulties come up when tiles need to be reduce (as they always do) and formed round obstacles in the room. Cutting hard tiles akin to porcelain floor tiles or some types of natural stone is a job that only professional equipment can do properly. It’s possible to hire the suitable equipment however that can be expensive and there is still a risk of ruining costly porcelain tiles with a bad cut.

If you’re assured sufficient to install your floor tiles yourself, or whether or not you’ve employed a professional tiler, crucial thing to do first is prepare the surface onto which the tiles will be laid.

If the present floor is concrete then the job will be quite straightforward – the mortar may be applied directly to the floor and the tiles laid on top.

If the existing floor is wooden then the solution is less easy – cement backer units (CBU) used with a moisture-proof membrane are a good selection for a wall tile substrate in wet areas and are often also used so as to strengthen a floor and provide a moisture barrier between the tiling and underlying wood. But cement backer units will not fully prevent bending of a wooden floor under the burden of very heavy floor tiles. For very heavy tiles being installed over a wooden floor a plywood substrate will be needed.

As soon as the substrate is prepared the area must be measured and the format to your tile measurement deliberate and marked out. A cement primarily based adhesive (thinset mortar) is then utilized in sections to the substrate with a trowel and each floor tile laid on top using the marked guidelines and plastic tile spacers to keep up even gaps between the tiles for the grout. The advantage of a thinset mortar is that it does not dry too quickly so you possibly can shift the tiles slightly to get the proper layout.

As each section of floor tiles is laid the level must be checked with a big spirit level because floors are rarely totally flat. Extra mortar can be utilized to even out areas where there is a slight difference in level.

For hard tiles corresponding to porcelain tiles a wet noticed with a diamond blade is used to chop them around fixed obstacles comparable to sanitary ware, pipes and doorways.

Once the entire tiles have been laid depart the mortar to dry thoroughly earlier than starting to fill the gaps between them with grout. There are three totally different types of grout available:

Unsanded – for grout joints less than 3mm wide

Sanded – for grout joints with a width of 3mm or more

Epoxy – a waterproof and stain resistant grout for any width of grout joint

Choosing the right type of grout for porcelain floor tiles will give a professional finish but will also reduce the amount of maintenance required, and if it is properly sealed it will last for so long as the porcelain tiles themselves.

Avoid walking on the floor until the grout has completely dried – this can take up to 2 days depending on the thickness of your tiles and on the width of the grout joints.

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