I recently tiled my bathroom, all by myself. I certainly learned that taking on a tiling project alone, without the aid of a tiler, can be a daunting experience. But I followed Walls and Floors’ video tutorial on How to Tile a Bathroom (which you can find at the bottom of this blog post), and it was easy! To help you tackle your bathroom tiling project, I’ve put together 10 top tips from my experience, taking professional pointers from the video tutorial…
1) Work out how much you need and add 10%
Use the handy Walls and Floors Tile Calculator to work out how many square metres you’ll need to tile your wall or floor. You will find a Tile Calculator link on all tile product pages! Add 10% to allow for cut pieces. This way, you won’t be caught short and left ordering more. Don’t worry – if you wind up with unopened boxes, you can return them to Walls and Floors.
2) Planning is crucial
Plan your tile rows well, to avoid a messy and unprofessional finish. Always tile from the centre line of a wall or floor – so that any cut pieces end up at the sides of the room, and are the same size. This will give you a symmetrical and professional finish. To help mark out your tile rows, use a tile gauge (a length of wood with the length of your tiles marked onto it).
3) Add some extra grip to slippery surfaces
Use tiles with anti-slip qualities beside bath tubs and shower areas to add extra safety, and to avoid slipping! Walls and Floors have a vast selection of anti-slip floor tiles to choose from. From gorgeous clay tiles, through to realistic stone effect tiles, through to striking and eye-catching wood effect designs! That way, you don’t have to worry when your loved ones are climbing in and out of the tub or shower tray.
4) Check before you tile
Once your tile has been delivered, check it! Don’t book a tiler until you’ve checked your order. Make sure it’s to your expectations and that you’re happy with it. There’s nothing worse than fixing a tile in place, only to realise it’s not quite to your liking.
5) The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
When fixing natural products, I recommend sorting your order into three piles; the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Due to the unpredictable nature of natural stone or cork, some tiles might come out with slightly unappealing markings or crevices. Decide which ones you consider to be Good, which ones you think are Bad (but acceptable), and which ones you think are just a bit Ugly (unusable). Use the good in the most visible places, such as the middle of the room. Use the bad towards the sides of your room, or under/around the back of the toilet and sink. They make for good cut pieces. If you need to chip into the ugly pieces, then do so. If not, simply discard them.
6) Prepare your surfaces
Before starting, ensure your surfaces are suitable for tiling onto. Make sure the wall or floor is dry, sound and will hold the weight of the tiling. If your wall is uneven, you may need to plaster before tiling. Likewise, if your floor is not level, you may need to look into using a levelling compound or screed.
7) Protect your hands
This is one I’ve learnt first-hand. To avoid getting dry, irritated skin on your hands from the process applying adhesive or grout, we highly recommend using a pair of rubber gloves. The marigolds from your kitchen cupboard will do just fine!
8) Use waterproof adhesive and grout
When it comes to tiling areas that are going to be subjected to water – such as the wall space next to your shower – it’s important to use water resistant adhesive and grout. This will help to keep the moisture on the surface of the tile, rather than allowing it to seep underneath. Walls and Floors sell BAL CTF4 Tile Adhesive, which is suitable for both walls and floors, and is water resistant. BAL Superflex White Wide-Joint Grout is suitable for both walls and floors, and is water resistant! It’s suitable for grout joints between 3mm and 20mm in width. When tiling a shower area, I recommend using this Ardex WP1 Waterproof Shower Kit. It comprises of an acrylic-based flexible coating, polyester tape, polyester matting and acrylic primer.
9) Tiling around toilets and basins
When tiling a bathroom, you will inevitably arrive at a toilet or basin. Tile up to these obstacles using whole tiles, rather than trying to lay your cut pieces first. Lay as many whole pieces around the toilet and basin as you can. Leave them to set, before approaching your cut pieces. It will make it a lot easier to shape your cut pieces correctly.
10) Dispose wisely
When you’ve finished your tiling project, and there’s a little bit of adhesive or grout left in the bottom of the tub, do not put it down the drain or toilet. It will block the pipes, and you’ll need to get a plumber out to fix it. Instead, pour the remaining liquid into a plastic bag and leave it to set. Once it’s hardened, you can either bin it, or dispose of it as hardcore.
Our handy How To Tile A Bathroom video
Here’s that handy step-by-step guide to tiling a bathroom I told you about:
Walls and Floors are always happy to help! If you have any questions or queries about your project or which products to use, just ask Paul Collins, the Tile Guru, at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will get back to you with the right answer as soon as he can. Alternatively, you can ask over Facebook or twitter!
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