Tools and Materials
The first step to installing ceramic tile involves gathering all of the necessary tools and materials. You will need to select the kind of tiles that you want for your project. Next, you will need backing or foundation, as well as adhesive or thinset. You will also need a notched trowel. A trowel is a flat metal piece with a handle. Look for one with flat edges for smoothing out the adhesive, along with notches for scoring the surface of the adhesive. There are many different types of notched trowels, of all shapes and sizes. Choose one that will pair well with the kind of adhesive you are using. A rubber mallet is necessary for tapping the tiles into the adhesive without damaging them. You will also need a hammer and bedding block. The bedding block is a piece of wood you will place against the tile so that you can strike it with a hammer without breaking it.
Ceramic tile should not be installed directly to a wood surface. If you have a wood floor, you will need to install a sub-floor prior to laying the tile. If you are installing it onto a concrete surface, you won’t need to lay down any type of covering. However, you will need to clean the concrete prior to installation.
Once you have decided on the proper layout, you will start laying tiles. Apply tile adhesive with the trowel to the tiles. Always start in a corner and work outward. Use the rubber mallet to nudge or the hammer and bedding block to push in the tiles. Allow the adhesive to set for 12 to 24 hours before applying grout.
Ceramic Floor Maintenance
Once your project is complete, it is important to get started on the right foot when it comes to maintenance. Check with the tile manufacturer for specific cleaning instructions. Regular professional tile and grout cleaning will ensure your floors look great for the long run.