Tiling Tricks

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Tiling can be one of those things that are better left to the professionals. While this is true if you are laying floor tiles or a large area of tiles, or even have corners to tile, but if you have less ambitious plans then you can easily tackle smaller jobs yourself. Find out how here.First of all do make sure that the surface that you will be tiling is smooth and clean, and if it’s in the bathroom then dry too. This may include some fill in plastering to smooth out the wall first, and make sure that there is no mould on the wall either. Plaster can take a deceptively long time to dry out too (up to two months), so make sure you are prepared. Check with your estate agents to see if the plaster is relatively new or not.
Next, make sure that you have bought enough tiles, and allow for breakages when purchasing by buying extra. Mark out the vertical and horizontal lines on your walls and be prepared to move the starting point if you find yourself with less than half a tile difference at the end. When you are ready to begin tiling, stay protected with gloves and safety glasses. Spread the tile adhesive with a notched spreader and try not to work in areas bigger than a metre so that the adhesive doesn’t dry out. Use tile spaces to keep you on track – you can easily grout over these afterwards. Wash the tiles as you go as getting rid of adhesive splashes later is more difficult.

Inevitably you will need to cut some tiles, but this is less daunting than it sounds especially as you have spare tiles if you do make mistakes. Unless you’re a professional, chances are you won’t own an electronic tile cutter and will instead be using a tile scribe which scores along the tile. Measure precisely the size of the tile that you need before using a metal ruler to score alongside, those splitting the tile. For an ultra-smooth finish, you can always file the rough edge of the tile using a tile file.

Tiling small areas can be fun and a great DIY project to give you confidence, and as you see, you don’t need an excess of equipment – a ruler is probably the most important thing to have when tiling! So be brave and try out a little tiling.

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