Top Tips for Successful Tiling
Things to note before you begin
Preparation is often key to a successful tiling project. Before doing anything else we recommend the you ensure the surface you are applying your tiles to is dry and primed. You should also ensure that the floor is properly covered up and that and the room in which you are working is ready for tiling. You should also ensure that you have all the tiling equipment you require readily to hand, and don't forget that this tiling and grouting equipment should also include things like a damp sponge, appropriate safety goggles / glasses, and gloves. You will need to make sure that you purchase the correct type of adhesive from us, so if you are in any doubt, please check the downloadable guides attached to each product or call us on 01270 281617. It is also extremely important to adhere to the storage and usage instructions of adhesive you are using.
Key tips for applying tiles
You should make sure you allow sufficient time to carefully apply your tiles. Nothing spoils a job quite like rushing at this stage! Time taken so that you are applying your tiles with care will make an enormous difference and will determine whether you end up with a professional looking project or a disappointing final job. Applying the adhesive correctly is one of the keys to the the success of the final tile installation, to tile like a pro, all you really need is to allow yourself time to practice and to give the necessary dedication!
Take your time and get it right
Professional tips for a successful job:-
- To make sure the surface is level and flat before you apply the tile adhesive, use a spirit level.
- To mix the cement adhesive, use a variable speed drill with a mixing paddle and slowly add water to the powder.
- Before use, ensure the adhesive is lump-free and that it has the consistency of a thick paste.
- Use a notched trowel to speed the adhesive evenly in order to cover the surface.
- You should place the first tile carefully into the adhesive, then slide away about 5 mm, then back info place using a batten for support and allowing for enough space between each tile.
- Use a spirit level again to frequently check that your tiles are aligned flush with the wall or floor.
- Don't over-apply the adhesive. A good guide is that the adhesive shouldn't fill the grout spaces.
- If any adhesive gets onto the tiles upper surface you should ensure that you wipe it off immediately with a damp sponge.
- Leave the adhesive to dry thoroughly before continuing with the grouting once the tiles have all been applied.
Top Tips for Successful Grouting
When it comes to learning how to grout tiles, the basic process of grouting is essentially the same regardless what type of tile you’re working with and whether you are intending to tile a wall or a floor. Grout is available is either a powder form which you can mix with water, or pre-mixed for you and ready to use right away. Regardless of which sort of grout you use, you should ensure you have sufficient grout available to complete the project. You should also choose your type of grout carefully, for example, you will require a waterproof grout in areas where water may get onto the tiles. The key thing to remember is that you should make sure that the spaces between the you have laid are are filled thoroughly. If you do this, your grout will properly hold the tiles in place.
Essential additional grouting equipment
- Damp sponge
- Small bucket
- Grout shaper
*If you are replacing old grout you’ll also need grout cleaner and a grout rake
Stage by stage grouting tips
Stage 1 - Mix your grout properly
Mixing your grout properly is the starting point. If you are using a powdered grout, you should start by pouring a small amount of water into a bucket. You should then add the powdered grout, using a stick to stir it. Continue to add the grout and keep stirring steadily until you achieve a consistency that resembles something like whipped cream.
Stage 2 - Applying the grout
Begin by applying a small amount of grout to the front surface of the tiles with a trowel, then spread it out with a grout spreader. The best method here is to use long strokes in an upwards and diagonal direction. You should also make sure it is spread properly into the space between of your tiles. You should try to grout all the tile joints as quickly as you are able to, as the grout will begin to harden on application. An important note here is that it is tempting to add water to help grout spread more easily but this should be avoided as it weakens the grout.
Stage 3 - Wipe over the tiles
As soon as you have finished grouting you should quickly wipe over the tiles with the damp sponge or cloth in order to remove excess grout. Care should be taken to avoid wiping over the grout the tile spaces. This stage should be done immediately after grouting as hardened grout will be much more difficult to remove.
Step 4 - Finish using a grout shaper
Once the excess grout has been wiped away you can improve the finished appearance further by using a grout shaper. The most effective way to use this tool is pulling the grout shaper over the joints in one long, even movement. If you see any small gaps in the grout appear the space between the tiles, just press in a small amount of extra grout in to the joint with the tip of your finger. Once done, excess grout should be wiped away with the damp sponge. To achieve a truly professional finish, you should use a soft, damp cloth to wipe off any remaining marks where excess grout has dried.