Setting Floor Tile
Here is a brief guide on the basics of tiling a floor. This will help you understand the process of how we install tile flooring.
Once materials have been selected, the most important factor to consider is which floor preparation method will suit the space, intended use, and geographical conditions. For most flooring today, a crack isolation membrane should be used. Although there are many manufactures, most come with the same properties and warranties. Some of the brands we typically use are Schluter Ditra, Laticrete, and Customs.
The membrane is set using a high quality thinset mortar on a clean, residue free subfloor.
To the right is an example of crack isolation membrane we've installed. It is important to verify there is good bond between the subfloor and membrane (seen below)
After curing, a carefully placed grid is snapped on the floor (every layout is different, some only require a couple snapped lines) It is essential for the outcome of the floor that proper layout is established. A few considerations that should be made are:
Where do I want full tiles in our layout?
Where should the floor transition into another room? (general rule of thumb is halfway under the door, this makes it so you can't see two different flooring finishes when your door is shut)
How big is the baseboard, will all the cuts hide?
Is there any slope that need to be maintained (IE a patio, or a curbless shower)
After a layout is done, the proper thinset mortar and notch is selected (in general, we use a larger notch on bigger tile or uneven surfaces. Smaller notches for flat surfaces and mosaics) Tiles in most situations should be flat smeared with thinset on the back, as well as thinset troweled on the floor. Larger format tiles require special setting techniques so no air bubbles are trapped. This could leave voids and are prone to breakage in the future.
Once the thinset on the floor has cured, grout prep and grouting is done. We never recommend using a concrete based grout, they are prone to discoloration, staining, and future grout failure. (more on our grout and grout choices can be found here)
We hope you have found this informative. If you have any questions, reach out to us and we will be happy to answer them for you .