How To Install Ceramic Floor Tile
In homes, you have to admit that ceramic tiles do indeed bring out the appearance of the room. It offers richness and also colors to a room that linoleum can never mimic or still have to find ways to mimic.
Ceramic tiles can be installed just about anywhere around the house. However, this kind of flooring is commonly found in bathrooms and the kitchen. Today, however, there is a wide variety of ceramic tile designs that can effectively complement any room in your house. You can also choose from designs that are similar to the type of house you have.
Another installing tip on ceramic tiles is that you can use it on entryways. This will serve as a transition point from the outside of the house to the inside of the house where hardwood flooring or carpeted floors are used.
Many people like to use ceramic tiles because it is easy to clean up and it is also impervious to water damage. Although hardwood floorings are indeed attractive and bring warmth to the home, once excessive water is introduced, you will end up with rotting wood. With ceramic tiles, this will not be experienced.
Ceramic Tile Types
Basically, there are two types of ceramic tiles. The first type is the glazed and the second type is porcelain. The glazed ceramic tile type is one that is suitable for heavy traffic areas, such as the living room or the kitchen. On the other hand, the porcelain ceramic tile type is suitable for bathrooms. You have to remember that porcelain is much more expensive than glazed tiles. So, you might want to consider measuring the room you plan on putting porcelain ceramic tile type first in order for you to estimate how much you will be spending on the tiles.
In order for you to properly install ceramic tiles, it is important to remember that the underlayment or the foundation is critical. You can tile on different surfaces, such as linoleum, tiles, and even concrete. In all cases, it is very important that you first make sure that the floor is level and that it is free from dust and debris before you install the tiles. If the floor isn’t leveled, you may want to get some leveling compounds and apply them.
To prepare the site you plan on tiling, try laying out the tiles first. This will give you an idea of what it will look like once you are finished and it will also give you an idea of how to lay or position the tiles better. If you now know what you want, the next step is by removing the tiles and get ready to install the tiles.
Things To Keep In Mind
Again, it is important to make sure that the work area remains dust-free and debris free.
When applying the adhesive, make sure that you start at the center and apply enough material to cover 6 square feet. It is very important to apply the adhesive on a step-by-step basis as covering the entire room will get the adhesive to harden up even before you install the tile.
If you need to cut some tiles, you may want to use a wet-saw. It can cut tiles accurately and it will also save you a lot of money by not making a lot of mistakes, such as making bad cuts or breaking the tile with another kind of cutting tool.
After installing all the tiles, let it sit for 24 hours to 48 hours before applying grout and walking on it.
Once you applied the grout, let it sit for another 24 hours. After this, you are now ready to walk on it and admire the beautiful work.
Have you ever watched someone lay tile? It’s really not that hard once you know the dos and don’ts.
The tricky part is not making any mistakes. There are some mistakes that may seem small but can cost you the entire job.
Ceramic Tile Repair Tip
Tile decor is a beautiful way to decorate the home. Ceramic tile can liven a kitchen or bathroom in beautiful ways. I have worked on simple to complex tile designs and each one has always been a pleasure to behold after the job is done. Even a simple white field of tile in a shower can look fabulous. In fact, ceramic tile can be found in kitchens, bathrooms, tiled floors, and countertops. Tile can be a timeless method of home decoration, but even decor needs some maintenance once in a while.
I have worked for several years installing and maintaining ceramic tiles in college student housing buildings. I have also replaced and installed tiles in homes. Some of the projects I worked with have been around for 20, 30, and sometimes 60 years or more. Trouble spots are bound to come up now and again as time goes on.
Checking For Problems
Tile mosaics make beautiful fields of color and shape. The most obvious damage to a field of tiles are cracks, chips, and breaks. I can spot these walking into most rooms because they break the pattern of the tile field. Cracks will also collect dirt over time, especially from washing. Chips flake away from the glaze of ceramic tile. This breaks up the color patterns and draws the eye to the damaged area. Breaks in tile can have pieces falling out or spider web patterns running through the field.
Stains on grout are another obvious problem. Some stains are simply that, caused by things such as coffee, dies, etc. Mildew from damp areas, such as showers, can cause grout to stain over time. You need to watch for this because over time the mildew will eat the grout away. This takes a while but looks bad.
Grout is basically cement. And over time the cement will deteriorate and erode. Again showers are a big culprit of this, but any place that sees constant running water sees erosion. As the grout erodes holes will form, and pieces fall out. Some of the first holes will only be visible upon close inspection. I have found grout lines with no holes but hairline fractures along the grout edge next to the tile.
The least obvious thing to look for in old tile works is the bed the tile is glued to. Mortar (Thinset) and mastic are used to glue tile to a surface. Over time these adhesives can crumble or rot. I have seen this more in areas of constant standing water or where a wall has shifted, applying lateral pressure to the tile field. The problem is you don’t see it. The best way to find these areas is to tap the tile with your knuckle or a wooden handle. Gently of course. If you hear a dull thud no problem. If you hear n eco you have a gap between the tile and bed where the adhesive used to be.
Fixing these problems in old tile works is fairly easy. Damaged tiles from cracks, chips, and breaks need to be removed. A hammer and cold chisel will work well. Remove the grout around the tile with a box knife or grout saw. apply some Thinnest Mortar to the new tile and press on. Line your tile edges and let dry. Grout the next day. TIP: Always let the grout dry a day. This makes sure the tile is truly set in place.
Grout that is mildewed or eroded needs to be scraped out. A grout saw works very well for this fix. In the case of mildew bleach the area once all the grout is removed. The important thing here is to make sure the surfaces are dry before re-grouting. I have found afloat works well for applying grout on these fixes.
In the case of a bad mortar bed start with grout removal. You can save tiles this way by taking the jib slowly and easily. get all the tiles that will come up easily. Clean them off and apply some thinnest. Press, let dry, and re-grout.
How To Clean Ceramic Tile
Ceramic Floor Cleaners And Grout Cleaners
Since the main drawback of ceramic tile flooring is the fact that it collects dirt easily, mere mopping or wiping of water may not be enough to clean ceramic tiles completely. For the best outcome, it is better to make use of ceramic floor cleaners.
Effective cleaners are not made out of special formulas. Basically, you may use these cleaners to clean up coffee or tea stains, ink, grease, and blood. The cleaners are effective in keeping the tiles in their best condition, creating the impression that it is brand new. Some famous brands of ceramic floor cleaners Lysol, Soft Scrub, and Mr. Clean are great for regular cleaning ceramic tile flooring.
These cleaners do not leave coatings on the grout. You may also use scouring cleaners (e.g. Ajax and Comet) as an alternative for grout cleaning. For cleaning the grout, make use of an old toothbrush. Scouring cleaners are not good for the ceramic tile itself since they can form residues in the tiles. The proper cleaning should produce a new look, even if it has endured high traffic. If you notice that there are areas that are excessively grimy, you may use a scrub brush and hydrogen peroxide to remove them.
Hydrogen peroxide works as well as any tile cleaner. The good thing about using hydrogen peroxide is that you can easily find it in your home as a good alternative. But ceramic floor cleaners are the best for the job since it is made especially for that purpose.
Grout cleaners may also be necessary since it is designed to not cause any markings on the tile. Tiles are sensitive to scratches, so if you use any product or cleaner with a certain abrasive text, then expect that there will be damage on your floor. You may always check the directions for a perfect cleaning experience.
There are, however, some precautions you should take in using ceramic floor cleaners while cleaning ceramic floor tiles. First of all, you should never ever mix bleach with any type of ceramic tile cleaner. If you decide to use bleach, you should use it on its own except for water, which dilutes the beach.
Likewise, if you decide to use a cleaner, use it alone as well. And also, if you are cleaning, never scrub the grouts or tiles with the use of steel wool or any other types of scouring pads, for it can cause scratches. The majority of the ceramic floor cleaners and other products of the same nature are strong, so it is a must to read the labels and follow the proper instructions.
And as a safety measure, wear rubber gloves throughout the cleaning process. The products may be hazardous to the skin and may cause injuries to your hand if it is left exposed.
Furthermore, the room where you are cleaning should be well ventilated. When inhaled, ceramic floor cleaners can be dangerous. You should remember all these precautions while working with a cleaner. And once you are done with cleaning, the next thing to do is to maintain its cleanliness. Wipe the floor with a wet mop or rug daily or at least every other day so that dirt will not accumulate in the tiles. This will make your general cleaning a whole lot easier.
Cleaning Does Not Have To Take Long!
Cleaning ceramic tile floors does not have to take long if you use the right ceramic floor cleaners it will save you a lot of time. The same for grout cleaning, if you use good quality grout cleaners you will notice it goes twice as fast. Remember cleaning ceramic tile more often also saves time in the long run!