How to Tile Your Bathroom Floor
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How to Tile Your Bathroom Floor

A do it yourself guide on tiling your bathroom floor.

If you have never tried your hand at tile work then the bathroom is a great place to start. It's usually a small area that will get tile and there's not any odd shapes to cut. Hopefully you have two baths or a really friendly neighbor because the jobs going to take all day and the tile adhesive will need 12 to 24 hours to dry.

The first thing you will need to do is prepare the floor by removing the toilet, any shoe mold and existing flooring. You can't go over vinyl (linoleum) flooring so you will have to pull it up or go over it with 1/4" luan plywood. I always go over (cover) the floors that I do because it gives you a good clean surface to work on.

After you have the floor surface prepared make a mark on the floor 1/4" larger than the size tile you're using on the longest run. If you're using 6" tiles make a mark 6 1/4" in each corner of the longest wall and chalk a line from these 2 marks. This is where you will start laying your tile. It's best to do what is called a dry layout first to make sure you don't end up with a really small cut against the wall. To do this just lay out the tile along the chalk line just as you would if you where using mortar. If your last tile is smaller than 2" you will need to cut the first tile some to make the adjustment.

Next mix your thin set mortar in a large bucket following the directions on the bag. Use the drill and paddle to make the mixing a lot quicker and a whole lot easier. Next, take your margin trowel and place thin set on the floor, just enough for 2 or 3 tiles at a time until you get the hang of things, between the wall and the caulk line. Try not to cover up the line. Take your notched trowel and spread the mortar, a good 1/4" coat, grout float start working the grout into the joints between the tiles. Do a reasonably small area at a time to avoid the grout hardening before you wipe of the excess. When the grout starts to look chalky start removing the excess with a damp sponge rinsing your sponge frequently. You will need to repeat this several times, allowing it to become chalky each time, until the tile is clean.

The floor is now complete. All that's left is to replace the shoe mold and reset the toilet. Enjoy your new bathroom floor.

tile wet saw. Most people don't have a tile saw laying around the house so you will need to rent, buy or borrow one. Several years ago I bought a small tile saw at Lowe's for around $60.00 and am still using it today on small jobs like counter tops or other smaller jobs. You can also rent a saw at your local rental center by the day or week.

Notched trowel: For tiling floors you will need a 1/4" notched trowel. This is used to spread the "thin set mortar" adhesive onto the floor.

Grout float: The grout float is used to spread grout into the joints of the tile once it's set.

Margin trowel: It's also good to have a margin trowel as well. This is a small trowel that can be used for many purposes such as mixing mortar, back buttering tiles and cleaning up excess adhesive from wall or floor.

Mixing paddle: The mixing paddle goes into your drill and is used to mix the mortar or stir adhesive.

You will also need a level, a tape measure, square, large sponge or 2, rubber hammer, spacers and a caulk box. The sponges and spacers can be picked up where you get your tile.

Additional resources:

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Comments (2)

A great guide. This would be very useful for my brother. :)

Karen and Tomboy Tools

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