1) Check out different projects’ photos online
Before committing yourself to any particular plan, search for similar projects online. What are the drawbacks and potential pitfalls? Are the materials you are going to choose long-lasting, reliable and safe? Will it be easy to handle future renovations?
Try to find the answers to these questions online as it can save you from expensive mistakes.
2) Order online
Local stores may drive you crazy with their limited choice. Give yourself more freedom and order stunning tiles online.
3) Measure and calculate thoroughly
Before you buy your tiles, measure the area of your space as accurately as possible. This must be done so as not to be mistaken in the amount of material you are about to purchase. After knowing the required number of tiles for sure, buy another 1/10 of the total amount to have some available stock in case things go wrong.
4) Examine the surface carefully
When preparing the floor surface (especially if it’s a cement base), carefully inspect it for cracks, dents and other irregularities. If the damage is significant, it is not recommended to apply patches around the entire perimeter. It is better (and cheaper) to replace the damaged parts of the floor with the new fragments.
5) Do not use chemicals with the cement floors
If the floor base is cement, do not use chemicals at all while preparing it for the tiling. The composition of many washing and cleaning solutions used for cement floors is often incompatible with the adhesive used for laying the tiles.
6) Ensure the surface is 100% even
Tiles are only laid on a flat surface. Otherwise, you will need to resort to special fixes (like liquid solutions) or a concrete screed to exclude all deviations from the perfect horizontal line. After each fix, check the results carefully. Laying tiles on the uneven surface will cause cracks.
7) Consider buying a few decorative tiles
In addition to the required number of tiles, do not forget about decorative ornaments and corner trims. You can also get some tiles with a different pattern as this can save you in case of small errors when laying tiles in hard-to-reach places.
8) Center properly
When starting laying the tiles, determine the focal point and work your way out in different directions. Do not use walls to define your lines. Rather, find out the middle of the floor, draw a line dividing the room in half and take things from there.
9) Cover everything in your room with plastic
No matter how careful you are, tiling the floor is always the mess. Protect any objects in your room from the dust and adhesive before you start by covering them with a simple plastic tape.
10) Use bright lighting
With a good lighting, you can spot any mistakes as you go and fix them immediately. Plus, your eyes will be less tired while you make numerous drawings and adjustments.
11) Clean the tiles before applying grout
Avoid huge mess by thoroughly cleaning the tiles before you start grouting. This will save you hours of time.
12) Remove the tile spacers before the adhesive dries up
Time wise – it would probably be ok to keep the tile spacers for a day to allow the tiles to sit properly but anything longer might make things hard. Once the adhesive dries up completely, it is incredibly difficult to pull out the tile spacers so make a note to do this earlier on.
13) Use sandpaper for sharp edges
To smooth out the sharp corners of the floor tiles, you can use silicon carbide sandpaper or an abrasive bar.
14) Use pliers and utility knife
Do not be afraid to cut off pieces of tiles in difficult instances. Sometimes it is easier to proceed with pliers or utility knife to get the shape you need that use a tile cutter.
15) Use gloves when grouting
Unless you are ready to get dehydrated, use gloves when grouting the tiles.
16) Remove the mess immediately
Anything that is still fresh can be fixed easily. But once the adhesive dries up, removing the excess of it turns into a Herculean task.
17) Keep lots of water and a sponge nearby
Save yourself plenty of time and energy by keeping water and cleaning materials close to you.
18) Do not clean your tools in the sink
Go outside and clean everything there. The adhesive can block your drain pipes and give you a hard time fixing it.
19) Always keep extra tiles
Sleep with confidence knowing that you have extra tiles at your disposal in case anything gets damaged.
20) Find out the best detergent
Once the floor tiles are finally in place, find the best cleaning solutions to use for your type of tiles.