Laying the floor tiles: from the preparation of the floor to the instructions for gluing the new tiles. Do-it-yourself laying of outdoor or indoor floor tiles.
Therelaying the tilesit requires a lot of precision but, with the right experience and a lot of patience, it can be carried out in full autonomy, saving the cost of labor.
There are tiles of all shapes and sizes on the market. From classic squares and rectangles to hexagonal tiles. With the different shapes it is possible to draw lines on the floor using a predefined sequence.
Before starting the installation, we advise you to draw up a project: arm yourself with graph paper and draw a scale drawing that shows the dimensions of the floor to be tiled. You can also use a squared paper where each square represents a segment of the floor to be tiled. Each tile can cover a segment: in this way you can also create a geometric pattern using complementary but different elements.
In the plan that you will trace on the sheet you will not be able to take into account the thickness required by the joints, however it will be very useful to start your work.
Laying the tiles: preparing the floor
- Tiling an irregular floor (garden, pre-existing external flooring ...)
If the surface is uneven, you have to smooth it out carefully: you can use a self-leveling product that must be applied semi-liquid. For all information, please refer to the article entitledself-leveling floor do it yourself.
- Tile on concrete
If thefloor to be tiledit is in fresh concrete, it will be necessary to wait thirty days to allow the moisture contained in the concrete to dry completely. In this context, haste could cause future problems!
- Tiling on tiles
If you need to tile an already paved floor, keep in mind that the entrance doors as well as the skirting boards will need to be modified. By applying a new layer of tiles over the old one, the floor level will rise by a few centimeters.
For thelaying of garden tiles, for outdoor flooring, we invite you to read our article:Laying outdoor flooring.
How to put the tiles, preliminary advice
To be more precise, a trick is to use a pair of tile measuring rules. We are talking about two straight wooden strips, on which you will mark (with precision) the space occupied by a row of tiles with relative joints. The thickness of the joints will be taken with special spacers.
Inlaying the tilesthe only variable is the thickness occupied byescapesbecause, by hand, it will never be possible to obtain the same result.
For this reason, the use of spacers and two strips to be placed and fixed, at right angles, near the corner from which you will start working is recommended, in this way you will trace a small, very precise work area.
In the corner formed by the two rulers, add a little adhesive and spread with a notched trowel that will limit the formation of air bubbles.
Laying the tiles on the floor
The installation starts from the corners: the first tile is placed in the corner of the rulers, first pass the adhesive as seen above.
Take the tile and lay it in the corner, exert a slight pressure with your hand which will serve to distribute and adhere the adhesive.
Then fix the secondtilenext to the first and help yourself with cross spacers that precisely regulate the thickness taken by thejoints between the tiles.
Continue to lay thefloor tilesuntil you have covered the entire box made with the strips.
With a spirit level, check that the floor is level. If onetileshould it be lowered, lift it with a stick and apply additional adhesive.
On the contrary, if a tile is too high, it will be necessary to lift it and remove part of the adhesive.
With the strips, prepare a second square and go ahead until the entire surface is covered.
How to cut the tiles
Cutting the tiles will be essential to be able to perform the installation. An inexpensive and simple way to do this involves the use of manual tile cutters.
On Amazon you can find very cheap manual cutters, which can be bought with 20 - 30 euros, our advice is to avoid such products because as much as they work, they would risk making you chip a good number of tiles. Paradoxically, the purchase of the cheapest tile cutters is recommended only for the most experienced. Those who have never cut tiles are better off with a good tool. Among the best on the market we point out theBosch manual cutter, the PTC 470 model that can be bought with 138.89 euros and free shipping costs. This tile cutter can cut tiles up to a thickness of 12 mm.
- Bosch PTC 470 tile cutter
for cutting tiles up to 33 x 33 cm
- Bosch PTC 640 tile cutter
for cutting tiles up to 45 x 45 cm.
Both tools feature a 20mm tungsten carbide cutting wheel with titanium cover.
Laying the tiles on the wall
The wall tiles they are generally thinner than those used for laying on the floor. The procedure for lay the tiles on the wall home is not very different from the one just described. For specific information on laying the tiles on the walls, please read the dedicated guideLaying the tiles on the wall.