Putting in Floor Tiles – A Primary Guide

Laying floor tiles is a job for a professional tiler or a very competent DIY enthusiast 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 seem comparatively simple but the difficulties come up when tiles have to be minimize (as they always do) and formed around obstacles in the room. Cutting hard tiles corresponding to porcelain floor tiles or some types of natural stone is a job that only professional equipment can do properly. It is potential to hire the precise equipment however that may be costly and there’s still a risk of ruining costly porcelain tiles with a bad cut.

In case you are assured sufficient to put in your floor tiles yourself, or whether you have got 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 can be applied directly to the floor and the tiles laid on top.

If the existing floor is wooden then the answer 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 additionally used with the intention to strengthen a floor and provide a moisture barrier between the tiling and undermendacity wood. However cement backer units will not entirely forestall 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.

Once the substrate is prepared the realm should be measured and the format in your tile dimension deliberate and marked out. A cement based adhesive (thinset mortar) is then utilized in sections to the substrate with a trowel and each floor tile laid on top utilizing the marked guidelines and plastic tile spacers to take care of even gaps between the tiles for the grout. The advantage of a thinset mortar is that it doesn’t dry too quickly so you possibly can shift the tiles slightly to get the right layout.

As each section of floor tiles is laid the level should be checked with a big spirit level because floors are rarely entirely flat. Extra mortar can be used to even out areas the place there’s a slight difference in level.

For hard tiles reminiscent of porcelain tiles a wet noticed with a diamond blade is used to cut them around fixed obstacles such as sanitary ware, pipes and doorways.

As soon as 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

Selecting the best type of grout for porcelain floor tiles will give a professional end but will additionally reduce the quantity of upkeep required, and if it is properly sealed it will final for so long as the porcelain tiles themselves.

Keep away from 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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