WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT INSTALLING A TILE FLOOR
Installing tile might be easier than you think. It is a common way for many homeowners to save some money on the cost of remodeling. It can seem a little daunting but have faith, you can get it done.
What You Need
You need a few things before you get started. The basics of a DIY installation job include:
- grout float
- tile cutter
- a measuring tape
There are various ways you can set tile, but the only way to make sure the tile is evenly placed is to start at the center of the room. Measure across the room in both directions and mark your center point. You can use chalk lines to help guide the placement of the tiles. If you’re a first timer, you should consider laying down the tiles for a trial run. This allows you to rearrange the tiles until you like their placement.
When your tile pattern is ready, prepare the adhesive.
Depending on the type of adhesive you are using you may need a 5-gallon bucket, mixing paddle and power drill.
Using a notched trowel apply the adhesive to the floor. Hold the trowel at a 45-degree angle to create “rows” of adhesive, the applied adhesive should look like a plowed field.
Set the tile into the adhesive and press it into place; spread out from that tile applying adhesive and then a tile. Use tile spacers to make sure your grout lines will be even.
It’s important that you leave yourself a way out of the room. You don’t want to walk on the tile until the adhesive has set.
Cutting the Tile
You can use a scoring cutter to cut tiles as needed. Remember to allow for the grout lines when measuring. If you are going to cut a lot of tiles consider renting a wet saw.
Once the tile has been laid make sure you allow enough time for it to dry. This is usually about 1 day but follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Once the adhesive is dry, it’s time to apply the grout.
First, remove the spacers and prepare the grout. Only mix as much grout as you can use in about 20 minutes. If you make too much it will begin to dry out before you can set it.
Use a rubber tile float to apply the grout. Hold the float at a 45-degree angle and drag it across the joints to fill up the grout lines.
After you have worked the grout into the joints use a damp sponge to clean off any grout residue left on the tiles. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to let the grout cure. Some may take several days.
DIY tiling can be a daunting task if you’re unsure you should consider hiring a professional. It is better to spend the extra money and have it done right than have to correct a bad installation job.