Must See Tips for Professional Looking Tile Floors
Pull tiles from several boxes (if possible) and check to see that the color is consistent for one color tiles. (Obviously, if they are supposed to vary in color and pattern that’s okay.) Regardless, you should always pull tiles randomly from several boxes when laying tile.
Pull random tiles from several boxes and stack them together. They should be identical. Poor quality tiles can vary up to 1/8″ in size. This will cause issues especially if you are using a small grout joint
Many ceramic or porcelain tiles are printed to look like real stone today. Take a close look at the surface. Is the printing evident? Do you see small dots like a printed newspaper photo? If you can’t see them easily, the printing was well done.
In addition to the overall dimension of the tiles, you should check the consistency of thickness
Are your tiles perfectly flat or do they bend? See below for a picture of two 4″ x 12″ tiles that show some bowing in the center of the tiles. (To eliminate accentuating this defect, you wouldn’t want to install these tiles with a 50% offset. Instead, a 25 or 33% would be a better staggered joint pattern.)
How To Choose A Tile Floor
A Guide On How to Choose A Tile Floor Best Suited For You
Tile is durable, water-resistant, and easy to clean, making this material a good choice for your kitchen, bathroom, and entryway. However, not all tile suits every room in your house. Your first choice for tile should be one that is safe and practical for your floors.
Browse for kitchen and bathroom tile.
Color influences the overall attitude of your room, which makes choosing the color of your tiles important. Dark tiles add warmth, but make sure you have an open area and light to keep the tile color from overwhelming the palette of your living area. Consider chocolate brown, navy, or burnt-colored floor tiles in a large kitchen space.
Browse for subway tile.
With today’s technology, flooring tiles are available in many affordable patterns to complement your home’s interior design. For a subtle look, use stone-patterned tiles, which can match many décor types. Be sure, however, that your stone pattern has a style that won’t clash with your home’s personality. Marbled stone surfaces add an austere look, so keep your home’s proportions in mind if you opt for this surface.
Browse for tile pattern sets.
Once you’ve chosen the type, color, pattern, size, and layout of your floor tiles, it’s time to install them. Think about how the spacing of your tiles can influence your floor’s appearance.
How to choose floor tiles
NATURAL OR MANMADE FLOOR TILE MATERIALS
Natural stone tiles have unique textures and tones, but are more likely to crack or scratch than a manmade materials, and may need sealing once laid – and resealing in future. Manmade materials are usually more affordable and come in a wide range of designs, but tend not to have natural stone’s character.
NATURAL STONE TILES
Natural stone tiles typically come in natural, honed or polished finishes. Natural surfaces tend to be matt with texture and pitting; honed tiles are smooth but matt; polished tiles have a smooth sheen. The higher the polish, the more water-resistant, but also the more slippery the tile will be.
Quarry tiles, usually made from clay, are unglazed and require sealing. Hardwearing and durable, they are perfect for hallways, kitchens, living spaces and outdoors. Terracotta tiles, like quarry, are made from a mixture of clays, but fired at a lower temperature for a more rustic look. Available in a range of earthy colours, they need sealing. Encaustic tiles are ceramic tiles, with the design not a product of the glaze but of different colour clays. Typically used in hallways, they need regular sealing.
FITTING FLOOR TILES
Installing tiles is a job that even beginners to DIY can tackle. Simply start by finding the centre of the room and laying out the first four tiles with spacers around that point. Then, lay out a few more tiles in each direction to ensure you don’t end up with any awkward, thin slivers of tile at the edges of the room. This done, you can apply adhesive in small sections to keep it from drying out.
INSTALLING UNDERFLOOR HEATING UNDER FLOOR TILES
Tiles heat up quickly and retain heat well, making underfloor heating an efficient option. Tile thickness has an impact on the heat-up time, with a thicker tile taking slightly longer to warm-up than a thinner one. Use a flexible adhesive and grout to allow for normal thermal movement. The finish you get is only as good as your subfloor, which must be clean, flat and movement-free before you start laying the tiles. Larger format tiles need the subfloor to be absolutely perfect to lay flat; smaller tiles will give you a little more leeway with minor imperfections.
Tips to Choose the Perfect Kitchen Tile
Determine where the tile will be installed
Before you select a material you will need to decide what surface the tile will be applied. Tile can be placed as a backsplash behind a stove, or on the wall to the underside of the upper cabinets. Tile is a popular countertop material, and can also be used on the kitchen floor
Decipher the difference between ‘tiles’
The word ‘tile’ refers to a resilient material that can be laid in rows over a surface. For kitchens, this could include: quarry, stone, cork, vinyl, bamboo, ceramic, porcelain and glass. Applications like vinyl, cork and bamboo tiles are most commonly used in flooring. While quarry, ceramic, and porcelain can be used for counters and floors. Glass tile is commonly reserved for walls and backsplashes.
Determine your budget before getting sold on the look
Kitchen tile can be inexpensive, such as vinyl and linoleum tiles or they can be expensive, such as custom designed ceramic tiles. Do your homework before getting married to an envisioned look in your head! Tile and home improvement stores can help you estimate the amount of product that will be required for your kitchen
Consider your household’s lifestyle
Although kitchen tile is resilient, it still requires up-keep and the longevity of each material differs. For countertops, ceramic tile is durable and will hold up to heat from hot pans, and is easy to clean and maintain. Unfortunately a ceramic tile surface can be uneven and it can easily crack or chip. Determine if your family’s lifestyle will match the tile finish you choose.
Choose a floor tile that can withstand your family’s habits
When choosing floor tile it has to be durable enough to withstand heavy traffic, pets, spilled foods and cleaning supplies. Ensure that you purchase floor tile that is called ‘floor tile’. If you choose a wall tile for a floor the coefficient of friction (COF) will be too low, which in turn means it’s too slippery for walking. Instead choose floor tile that has a slight raised pattern, or texture to it to allow for a safer kitchen floor. For a more refined and elegant look consider using quarry tile. The clay and limestone based tile is fired to look like natural stone. Quarry tile is more expensive than the traditional ceramic tile, but is gorgeous in the right application
Tips For The Perfect Floor Tile Installation
Plan Your Layout
When it comes to tiling floors, failure to prepare is certainly preparation to fail. The number one rule is to carefully plan ahead – so pick up your notepad, dust off your pencil and sketch out your favourite layouts. Think about where grout lines and cuts will fall as you’ll want your room to look balanced and symmetrical; door thresholds and floor obstructions will also need accounting for
Finished Floor Height
At the same time, you’ll also have to consider the build-up of your floor. Backing boards, underfloor heating mats and adhesive can easily add an inch to your substrate, before you’ve even accounted for the depth of your tiles. If you’re refurbishing a room, you might need to shave the bottom of your doors to allow for this extra height or amend the levels of any worktops and cabinets accordingly
We’re often asked if you can tile on top of existing floor covering. While the answer’s often – but not always – yes, we think it’s usually best to strip things back and start over again. You see, like a good prima-donna porcelain tiles can be a little picky. They’re not big fans of movement or bumps in the subfloor and in any case, you’ll want to ensure any underlying issues are resolved. Once you’ve removed your current floor, you’re generally left with a solid concrete base or timber floorboards to work from
Get Things Level
Whether you’re refurbishing a room or working in a brand new space, you’ll need to ensure your floor is completely level. Fact – floor tiles like a base that’s flat as a pancake, especially larger plank tiles. And whilst tile adhesive can help level out any minor undulations, we’d recommend pouring a layer of self-leveller to smooth out larger gaps and bumps. It’s also great if you’re planning on fitting underfloor heating mats; by burying the cables you’ll gain a flat surface for tiling and remove any chances of potentially damaging the wires
Allow For Movement
At the risk of sounding like a record stuck on repeat, whether your new tiles are being laid onto an old wooden floor or a new concrete slab it’s vital to think about movement. Even seemingly solid substrates can shrink and expand over time and if these stresses aren’t dealt with, they can lead to fractured tiles