A correctly laid tiled floor will add value to your home and should last a life time. But an incorrectly laid tiled floor can be a stressful and costly mistake that could devalue your home!
People often think that problems such as cracked and lifted floor tiles are the result of using cheap tiles. But this is often not the case at all; the main cause usually lays in the improper installation of the floor tiles in the first place.
- Dot and dab
- Tile on an uneven substrate
- Tile on wet/damp concrete
- Use the incorrect adhesive
- Tile on a greasy, oily, dirty, waxy or dusty substrate
- Tile on a substrate that will be subjected to excessive movement
There are specific steps that you need to consider when tiling a floor. The first task in hand should be to evaluate the surface that you will be tiling onto. Is this surface clean, dry, level and free from loose debris? Is the substrate a timber surface a concrete surface or something else?
If you are tiling onto a timber substrate it is essential that you ensure that this surface is secure and will not move. If you are tiling to timber floorboards they will probably need plywood overlay and this should be at least 15mm thick to comply with British standards. Or you could use a new product called No More Ply which is BBA approved and will do the same job as normal plywood but is only 6mm thick. Both these products should be securely fixed so that no movement occurs. Flexible cement based adhesives and grouts should then be used to counter act any slight movements that may occur over time. For more information on No More Ply, flexible adhesives and grouts take a look at the tiles4all website.
If you are tiling on to a concrete surface it needs to be sound with no loose or broken areas. The substrate should be level and dry. Newly laid concrete needs at least 6 weeks to dry and a new screed 3 weeks. Ordinary Rapidset, cement based adhesives suitable for floors can be used on a concrete substrate unless you are installing underfloor heating, in this case a flexible adhesive must be used.
Always use full coverage of adhesives, dotting and dabbing can leave voids that could cause a problem later on!
All adhesives have helpful information on the back of the bags such as mixing ratio, setting times, coverage and suitability for use.
There are many types of substrates that can be tiled on to, so it advisable to seek professional advice if you are tiling on to anything out of the ordinary.
Tiles4all have everything you need to tile a floor correctly, take a look at our website for a range of floor tiles, adhesives, grouts, tiling tools and underfloor heating.