Learn to set up a tile flooring and get monetary savings by doing a DIY tile flooring set up!
After 4 years of dwelling in our home, I’m so excited to be giving our laundry room some TLC! One in every of our first initiatives within the house is to exchange the “blah” tile that our builders put in with one thing extra lovely!
After we cleared every thing out of the laundry room so we might get to work, that is what we had been left with:
I knew that new tile would immediately enhance the house, so we bought proper right down to it! Right here’s how we accomplished the tile flooring set up:
Tile Flooring Set up Step by Step
This put up comprises affiliate hyperlinks. For extra info, see my disclosures right here.
Step 1- Collect all provides.
We realized early on in our DIY days that having the appropriate instruments could make an enormous distinction, and this tile venture was no exception! Listed here are the entire gadgets we used to put in the brand new tile:
The way to Determine Out How A lot Tile You Want
Earlier than we checked out even one tile pattern, we would have liked to determine how a lot tile we had been going to wish. To do that, we first measured the size and width of our house. We then multiplied these numbers collectively to give you the sq. footage. (This tile flooring calculator makes it straightforward!)
Now we have a small linen closet in our laundry room which signifies that it isn’t an ideal rectangle. After taking that under consideration, we figured that our tile can be masking proper round 45 sq. toes.
HOWEVER, we couldn’t simply buy precisely 45 toes of tile. We wanted to ensure we had further to account for errors, locations the place we would wish to make use of partial tiles, and many others. We additionally wished to have some tile left over for the long run in case a number of of the tiles we put in would get damaged by chance.
Usually, the professionals advocate overbuying in tile by 10-20% simply to be secure. Many locations will allow you to return any full packing containers of tile in the event you don’t find yourself needing them, so examine in your retailer’s coverage while you buy.
Step 2- Take away current flooring.
Earlier than we might set up our lovely new tile, we would have liked to take away the outdated tile!
We eliminated the baseboards first, utilizing a crowbar and a hammer to pry them away from the wall. As soon as the baseboards had been out of the best way, it was simpler to sort out the tile.
Beginning within the again left nook and shifting towards the doorway, we used a hammer drill with a chisel bit to interrupt up and take away the tile from the cement board base.
The hammer drill made very fast work of the tile flooring. In half-hour or so, the entire tile had been eliminated. Utilizing a hammer and chisel would’ve taken hours.
After our tile was eliminated and out of the best way, we had a call to make…
Can I reuse the prevailing cement board?
When our tile had been eliminated, we realized that the cement board beneath it had been each nailed and mortared to the subfloor beneath. It was good to see the cement board underlayment was put in correctly. However the mortar makes the cement board laborious to separate from the MDF subfloor with out a number of effort and potential splintering.
The prevailing cement board was really in actually good condition after eradicating the tile. We determined to see if we might keep away from ripping it out and placing in new cement board.
There have been just a few tough spots and excessive spots on the cement board from the tile mortar. The chisel bit on the hammer drill was in a position to simply chip off the left over mortar on the cement board to create a superbly flat base for our new tile.
It’s extraordinarily necessary to not have any excessive spots on this cement board base or else you threat cracking tiles after they’re put in.
If we weren’t in a position to get the prevailing cement board completely easy to create a superb basis for the brand new tile, we wouldn’t have tried to maintain the prevailing cement board.
I’d say that typically, it is not going to be potential to reuse the cement board. We simply lucked out with the best way the outdated tile got here off of the cement board through the demo.
I took the picture above proper after Donnie completed smoothing out the cement board. Then I went in with a Store Vac after which a brush after which a sponge to do clear up. I eliminated as a lot particles and mud as potential to organize to put our tiles.
Step 3- Determine on tile structure.
As soon as our space was prepped and able to go, we couldn’t simply begin attaching tiles to the ground. We first needed to resolve on the structure of our tile.
Since we had been working with a reasonably small house, we had been in a position to lay out the precise tile to see how it might match on the ground.
We determined to overlap every tile by 1/3, so after laying three rows of tile, row 4 is a repeat of row one. After taking a look at tons of inspiration images, we preferred this look higher than overlapping by 1/2 tile and even 1/4.
Due to the small house, we needed to start tiling from the again of the room, and tile our method out. However we would have liked to be sure that we wouldn’t be left with a skinny strip of tile close to the door of the room. That may not look good. We wished the primary row tiles that individuals see when coming into the room to be as near full width as potential.
To ensure we might keep away from a small strip of tile close to the door, we began from the again and lined up tiles (ignoring the 1/3 overlap for this half). We added the spacers and labored our strategy to the doorway to see if we’d find yourself with a full tile.
It turned out that we might start at the back of the laundry room with a full width tile and find yourself on the entrance of the laundry room with near a full width tile as properly. If this wasn’t the case, we’d’ve needed to rip down the primary row of tiles in the back of the laundry room in order that we’d find yourself with a full width tile on the entrance.
Discovering a Beginning Level for the Tile Flooring
Subsequent we would have liked to resolve tips on how to begin the primary row. We knew wished a 1/3 overlap, so we started laying down tiles in that configuration. We wished to keep away from having a very skinny little part of tile alongside the wall on both facet of the laundry room as we labored our method out. Once more, a very slim part of tile doesn’t look as clear and completed.
You possibly can see within the image beneath that beginning with a full tile within the again left of the laundry room was a great way to begin. Relying on the row, we would wish to make use of some partial tiles, however they’re substantial sizes that also look good.
With our configuration, each third row began with a full tile to the left. This made laying the tile straightforward.
Clearly, the scale and form of your tile and your house will play an enormous function in figuring out your remaining tile structure. It’s value it to place in just a little further time through the planning section to be sure that your remaining tile structure doesn’t find yourself with any awkwardly sized items.
Step 4- Put together and apply the mortar.
With the tile structure determined, it was time to start putting in the tile for actual!
We determined to make use of conventional tile mortar (thin-set) as a substitute of mastic. Though mastic works properly with ceramic tile, mortar tends to dry a bit slower and is a bit more forgiving. If we had been tiling a wall, we’d most certainly use mastic.
After we bought our pre-mixed mortar in a 2.5 gallon bucket, we seemed on the tile trowel suggestions for that specific product. For our tile measurement and our specific mortar, it was beneficial that we use a trowel with 1/4″ x 1/4″ notches.
Usually talking, the bigger the tile, the bigger the notches you’ll need in your tile trowel. It’s necessary to observe the suggestions in your specific mortar or mastic.
For the tile spacing, we determined to go along with 1/16″. This creates a really skinny grout line that appears good however will solely work in case your tiles are completely uniform in measurement. Most ceramic tiles are pretty uniform, however some pure stones should not. If our tiles weren’t uniform, we’d’ve chosen to house them 1/8″ aside.
Using Leveling Spacers
For this tile venture, it was additionally the primary time that we used leveling spacers. They labored rather well!
The 1/16″ spacers have a base that the tile sits on. As soon as the mortar is utilized you set the tile down onto the spacers. After which as soon as the neighboring tile is put in, you employ little wedges which act as a self-leveling mechanism. That is significantly good for flooring tiles as a result of it’s straightforward to really feel unevenness below your toes. I don’t assume we’ll ever use one other kind of spacer once more.
Additionally take into account that it’s necessary apply the mortar in a constant method, particularly with massive tiles. For lengthy tiles like we used, we made certain that the 1/4″ by 1/4″ trowel marks had been perpendicular with the tile. The grooves within the mortar permit air to flee by the shortest route potential. The bottom of the tile wouldn’t be as constant or robust if the grooves ran lengthwise.
We additionally made certain to “again butter” every tile earlier than setting it on prime of our grooves or mortar. Again buttering is simply making use of a really skinny (as skinny as potential) layer of mortar to the again of every tile utilizing the flat facet of the tile trowel. You unfold the mortar on the tile after which principally scrape all of it off. You might be left with an ultra-thin layer of mortar that basically helps the tile adhere the mortar that was utilized to the ground. This further step takes solely seconds, but it surely’s necessary for tile adherence.
Step 5- Reduce and lay the tile.
For this specific tile structure, most of our cuts had been straight traces perpendicular to the size of the tile. We’ve discovered that some tiles are simply scored and snapped, whereas others are likely to chip and snap inconsistently. Fortuitously, these tiles had been straightforward to attain and snap.
After measuring a tile and figuring out the place to chop, we positioned the tile within the the tile snapper. We scored the floor many occasions to create a small groove, after which used the deal with to use strain to the tile and snap it at our line. This labored flawlessly, and we had zero ruined tiles.
For this venture, we would have liked to make just a few cuts that couldn’t be achieved withe tile snapper– round door jams, for instance. For this we used our Ryobi moist noticed.
This noticed is pretty cheap, but it surely does a superb job. It has an adjustable fence, which makes straight cuts straightforward. It’s additionally gentle and transportable, which is a pleasant change from a few of these large 100+ pound tile saws.
One factor that we’ve discovered useful is the usage of grease pencils for marking the tiles earlier than chopping with the moist noticed. A pencil mark will simply wash away when utilizing the moist noticed, however the grease pencil stays seen even when moist.
After we bought to the door space with the tile, we realized that except we wished to be caught within the laundry room for twenty-four hours whereas the tile dried (HA!), we would wish to take away the door so we might use our spacers and levelers.
As soon as the door was eliminated, we had been in a position to end up the final of the tile!
Snapping Off the Spacers
The following day, the mortar was dry sufficient to stroll on the tiles. Tapping every spacer on the facet with a hammer would snap off the spacer (the bottom nonetheless beneath every tile).
We then inspected the entire 1/16″ gaps between the tiles to ensure there was no mortar protruding that will impression the grout line. At this level, the mortar was tender sufficient to scrape out any extra with a putty knife.
Step 6- Time to grout the tile!
Grouting flooring tile is enjoyable and simple. It’s a fast course of, and the tile appears higher instantly.
We selected Dove Grey grout. Following the directions on the again of the grout bag, we blended the grout in a bucket utilizing a mixer bit and our cordless drill.
As soon as the grout was blended, we made certain we had quite a few sponges and a bucket of unpolluted water readily available.
Grouting flooring tile is good in comparison with grouting wall tile. It’s straightforward to use a number of grout to the tiles after which work within the grout with the grout float with out having to fret about grout falling off the wall and making a multitude.
We labored the grout into the 1/16″ house between the tiles with our grout float, doing about 3 sq. toes of tile at a time. As soon as the grout was within the house between the tiles, we had been certain to scrape off as a lot extra grout as we might.
Then utilizing a sponge from the bucket of water (wrung out as a lot as potential), we started wiping down the grout-covered tile utilizing a round movement with out a lot strain. As soon as each side of the sponge had been coated with grout, we wrung out the sponge and began the method over. It takes 3 or 4 passes earlier than the surplus grout is eliminated, leaving grout solely within the house between the tile.
A Few Cautions About Grout
There are two methods this half can go incorrect…
- utilizing an excessive amount of strain when wiping the tile with the sponge, and
- utilizing a sponge that’s too moist.
In each of those circumstances you’ll mess up the grout the road, and it received’t be as easy as you need. Take your time, use a barely damp sponge, and make many passes in a round movement.
Utilizing this methodology, we began grouting on the again nook and labored our method out of the room.
As soon as the entire grout was utilized and the tiles had been cleaned, we waited about an hour. Throughout this time you’ll discover a haze to look on the tile. When you see the haze and the floor of the tiles are not damp, it’s okay to take away the haze.
We entered the room in socks and had been cautious to not step on any of the grout traces. We then used a sponge with a clear bucket of water to buff out the tiles in a round movement.
The sponge needs to be simply barely damp at this level. Wring out as a lot water as potential after which flippantly buff the tiles in a round movement. Then clear the sponge and repeat till the haze has been eliminated.
Step 7- Seal the grout.
Since we spent a lot time laying and grouting our tile, we wish to ensure that we defend the grout from injury. We do that by sealing the grout.
We let the grout remedy for about 72 hours earlier than we began the sealing course of. I used this grout sealer as a result of it got here with a nifty little brush constructed proper in!
I merely painted the sealer alongside the grout traces, going again after each few rows and utilizing a dry fabric to wipe off any sealer that had gotten onto the tile.
After ending the primary coat of sealer, I waited half an hour after which repeated the method for a second coat. Then I let it alone to dry for 2-3 hours and it was performed!
As soon as the sealing course of is full, we get to take pleasure in our new superbly tiled flooring! Yippee!
Let’s check out the earlier than and after…
Yay! Clearly we nonetheless have a number of work to do earlier than we are able to name the laundry room “full,” however the brand new tile is unquestionably a step in the appropriate path!
I’m excited to maintain plugging away on the laundry room till we now have it completed– baseboards and trim are up subsequent on our to-do checklist!
Finishing a tile venture? You should definitely pin the picture beneath so you possibly can seek advice from this put up later!
Have you ever ever performed a tile venture in your house? I’d love to listen to about it within the feedback beneath!
You possibly can see our earlier tile initiatives right here:
The way to Set up a Subway Tile Backsplash
The way to Set up a Hexagon Tile Backsplash
Putting in and Grouting Tile: 50 Ideas and Methods
Thanks a lot for following alongside! Have an exquisite day!
This put up comprises affiliate hyperlinks. For extra info, see my disclosures right here.