Ceramic tiles are an aesthetically pleasing material frequently used in bathrooms, as wall trim, and even in kitchens. Many homeowners have opted for this flooring since it is long-lasting and straightforward to clean.
Tiling a floor is not difficult, but it does need time and planning. Before beginning, check that you have all the necessary equipment and supplies. And if you’re tiling the walls and the floor, it’s best to get the walls done first. Remember that floor tiles are typically thicker than wall tiles, so you’ll want to pick the suitable tiles for the appropriate surface.
Equipment for setting tiles
To lay tile flooring, glass cutters, a carpenter’s square, safety goggles, a grout float, a tape measure, pencils, sponges, hammers, and a notched trowel. Tiles, tile spacers, spackling compounds, adhesives, silicone caulk, and grout sealant are all essentials.
Laying Tiles and Getting Ready
The old flooring must be entirely removed before the new tiles can be laid down. Make sure the subfloor can handle the weight of the new 1-inch-thick tiles. Tiles are heavy; therefore, the surface they’re laid on must be sturdy and level. Any depressions may show up in the grout and cause the tiles to break. Use an underlayment as a tile basis if the floor is uneven. Fix all of the chips and cracks in the concrete flooring. The underlayment can be installed directly on top of the linoleum.
Get rid of the extra furniture and scrub the floor. There can’t be any wax, dirt, or grease on the floor. If there is a chance of dampness, you should install a waterproof membrane. In such a situation, cement-fiber boards make the best underlayment for tiling.
Structures and Designs
Depending on your level of creativity, you can choose from a wide variety of tile patterns and materials. The two most typical configurations are ‘Jack-on-jack’ and ‘running bond.’ The former features square tiles in a checkerboard pattern, while the latter includes grout lines that are staggered along each row. Tiles on the floor should always be centered in the space for aesthetics and tidiness.
Locate the exact middle of the two walls by measuring. Use these markers to chalk a line along the middle of the room’s length. A line drawn perpendicular to one wall must then be drawn on the other two walls. You can check the center’s squareness with a carpenter’s square.
A row of tiles should be dry-fitted throughout the room’s width and length. The grout joints should have uniform spacing. You can see what must be changed by rearranging the tiles this way. Use complete tiles whenever possible, and aim for at least half a tile’s width between them and the walls.
Putting in new tile
When tiling, start in the middle of the intersection of the two lines and work your way out to the walls in each quadrant, following the lines as a guide. Using the notched edge of the trowel, spread the glue in a beaded ridge pattern. You can use plastic spacers between the tiles if you want perfectly straight grout lines. Remove these once you’ve placed the tiles before the adhesive can harden. Eliminate any lingering bond before it sets. For the glue to fully dry, give it 20-30 minutes.
Use the tile leveler and a mallet to press the tiles firmly into the glue after a few rows have been laid. Once you’ve applied all the tiles over the floor, you may begin cutting tiles to fit the room’s borders.
Ceramic tile cutting and installation
Trimming and cutting tiles to fit snugly around borders, obstructions, plumbing, wiring, window frames, electrical pipes, basins, etc., is an inevitable part of every tiling project. It takes time and practice to get the hang of shaping tiles to suit these indentures. Small tasks can be completed with a tile or glass cutter, while larger jobs may require a wet saw.
Tiles need to be scored, cut, and drilled with pressure applied by the tool, but too much pressure might cause the tile to fracture or break.
Use a combination square as a straight edge while using a glass cutter to achieve precise 90-degree cuts. You should accomplish this all in one swift motion to get an excellent, even result.
When scored repeatedly, tiles eventually break.
The tiles can be broken using a wet saw, tile nippers, or bare hands. After determining the required cutting size, push firmly and uniformly. When working with tiles, eye protection is essential.
Fixing shards and splinters
Rough edges can be smoothed with a circular file, and sharp ones can be nipped off with pliers. To soften the sharp edges of a straight cut, run it against a piece of 80-grit aluminum oxide sandpaper.
Putting in joint compound
Using a rubber float held at a 45-degree angle, the grout should be forced between tiles after being combined into a thick paste. The float should be held roughly perpendicular to the ground. Remove any excess grout from the tiles by wiping them down. A toothbrush can be used to mold the grout. After waiting 20 minutes, remove any leftover grout with a damp sponge. Use silicone caulking that can be cleaned with water to seal the joints where the tiles meet the counter. Use a wet sponge or your finger to even it out. After a week, use a small paintbrush to apply silicone grout sealant to the grout’s surface to help prevent discoloration.
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