What Should I Know About Installing Tile?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 November 2019
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The process of installing tile can be impacted by a number of different factors. One of the most important factors that will make a difference in the installation of tile has to do with where the tile is placed. Along with this consideration, the type of tile also dictates some of the things that you should know about installing tile. Here are some of the most important things to keep in mind if you plan on installing tile on a floor, the bathroom walls, or on the ceiling.

When most people think in terms of installing tile, the first thought that comes to mind is flooring. The tiles may be destined for use in several rooms of the house. You may choose to install bathroom tile, kitchen tile, or perhaps parquet tile in a living room, hall, or den. Before you install tile, it is important to choose tiles that are formulated for use in the room you have in mind. There are subtle but key differences between the tiles used in rooms with higher humidity levels.


As you select tiles that are made of materials appropriate for the space, your next step is to determine which type of tiles you want to use for the project. It is possible to utilize tiles that are manufactured with the adhesive already applied to the back of the tile. These are often great for people installing tile flooring for the first time. For more advanced do it yourself homeowners, tiles that make use of pasting and grouting to achieve the right look may be preferable. However, keep in mind that if you have to apply the adhesive yourself and grout the tile afterward, the project will be more labor intensive.

Once you are sure that you have the right type of tile for the job you plan on doing, there is the need to prepare the surface where the tile will be installed. For the best results, it is a good idea to strip the floor of any other type of covering. This includes taking up old tile. While it is possible to install tile flooring over existing tiles, the results are usually not as effective as starting with a bare floor. Make sure to inspect the floor carefully so you can address any imperfections that result in an floor that is not smooth and level.

After inspecting and cleaning the surface, you need to prepare your tools and place the tiles within easy reach. This will cut down on the amount of time you spend moving back and forth to get what you need for a given step. In order to achieve a uniform balance, it is a good idea to lay a line of tile in the middle of the room, then move toward the opposing walls on either side of the center line. Once you pick up the rhythm, installing tile will move much quicker.

One final tip that applies to installing tile of any type is to be patient. Depending on the size and choice of materials, the tiles will take time to set and cure. Make sure you read the installation instructions that come with the materials, especially if you are using pre-pasted tiles. This will cut down on your frustration, and also help you to set reasonable expectations for declaring the job complete.


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