If you’re planning to do some tiling for the first time, you’ll understandably be a bit nervous about such an undertaking. But tiling is, on the whole, quite a straightforward process, so if you’re careful and methodical, you can do a great job and save money by not hiring a professional.
To give you a head start, here are our Top 7 tricks of the trade when it comes to doing a great tiling job:
It’s standard tiling advice to buy 10% more tiles than you think you’ll need. This additional amount covers any little miscalculations and breakages (especially handy when you’re a novice). To work out how many tiles will be required for each job, use our Tile Calculator, which you’ll find on each product page, or pop in and ask a member of staff for advice.
It’s not a good idea to only buy just enough tiles thinking that you’ll pop into the store to buy more if you need them – the danger is that the new tiles will be from a different batch and there’s a possibility there might be a slight difference in the colour match. You may also be unlucky and find your chosen tiles have been discontinued and there are none left in stock.
However, if you do buy extra tiles, do a great job and have unopened tile packets left over at the end of the project, you can return them to us and we’ll be happy to offer you a refund.
Whether you’re tiling walls or floors, always lay the first tile in the middle and work outwards. If you start from the edge, you’re likely to end up with inconsistent grout lines, messy edges etc, so take the time to prepare properly in order to get it right.
Before tiling the floor, lay out your tiles to make sure you end up with even sized cuts at each edge. If not, adjust the tiles so the edges are as symmetrical as possible. On walls, use a pencil to mark where the tiles will go on so you can easily calculate if the edges are going to be symmetrical. Always remember to leave spaces for the grouting, otherwise your calculations will be wrong.
It’s very important to keep all tiles levelled as you’re tiling along. To achieve this we have re-invented the Tile Levelling System to ingeniously solve the issue of ‘lippage’ and saves you installation time. This system not only helps adjust height, but also helps to evenly hold tile edges throughout the adhesive drying process.
Intrigued? Pop in any store and our staff will be happy to give you a demo!
Use tile spacers to help you keep the gaps between the tiles even. We sell spacers in 2mm, 3mm and 5mm sizes – ask a member of staff about which size will be best for the tiles you’ll be using.
It’s a classic saying, but the reason it’s so well-known is because it’s true! You can never be too careful about making sure your tiling job looks great, so when it comes to cutting tiles, or measuring around fixtures and fittings, double check everything. It’s also best to err on the side of caution and cut off little rather than too much – you can always cut a bit more off if you get it wrong, but if you cut too much off, you’ll have to use another tile and start all over again.
The adhesive needs to be completely dry before you add the grouting – so leave at least 24 hours before you start. If the adhesive is still wet, you risk moving the tiles out of place when you apply the grouting.
An additional tip is that if you’re tiling for the first time, use slow setting adhesive as it gives you more working time rather than rapid set adhesive which only gives a maximum off 45 minutes.