When using the thin-set method in residential areas it’s rather simple. To put it in better prespective, it’s easier to install the wood or vinyl sheet goods and slightly more difficult than vinyl tile. The following information is a brief description of the various steps involved in using the thin-set method to install tile. It is not meant to be an instruction manual but rather a briefing to familiarize you with the basics.
1. Wall Preparation: As with the subfloor, it’s very important that the walls meet the following requirements:
- Plumb and Even
2. Wall Layout: Using a level the installer will draw horizontal and vertical lines in the center or each wall as a starting point.
The entire room is planned so the horizontal line runs continuous on each wall.
Now, the installer lays out a loose row (without adhesive) of the tile and adjusts the starting lines so that he has equal size cuts on both sides of the wall.
3. Preparing the tiles: As with the floor tiles, the installer will mix the tiles from several cartons to limit any possibility of shade variations.
4. Spreading the thin-set: The thin-set is applied using a notched trowel. The installer will do a small area at a time so that he can adjust the tiles while the adhesive is still wet.
5. Laying the tile: Each tile is set using a slight twisting motion and pressing firmly in place.
The tiles are then aligned so that all grout joints are straight.
Since few corners are perfectly plumb, the installer will mark and cut the tile at the end of each row to fit the corner.
The installer will clean any excess adhesive off the face of the tile before spreading the next section on the wall.
6. Grouting: After waiting about 24 hours, the installer will apply the grout usinga rubber trowel or squeegee.
After 10 mintues the surface is cleaned.
1. Subfloor preparation: The mose important step in accomplishing a satisfactory installation. The subfloor must meet the following requirements:
- Structually Sound
- Smooth and Flat
- Free of Waxy or Oily Films
- Free of Curing Compounds
2. Floor Layout: In this step, the room is squared off, measured, and the chalf lines are snapped. Once the chalk lines are in place, the installer will lay loose tiles across the floor in both directions to balance the room so that the cut-tiles are the small size on each wall.
3. Preparing the tiles: Slight tone variations are to be expected from tile to tile. A good installer will prevent this from becoming a problem by mixing the tiles from several cartons before installing. By doing this, the tile blends together and any possible shade variation will disappear.
4. Spreading the thin-set: Using the chalk lines as a guide the installer will being applying the thin-set on one sectional at a time. He will spread one coat using the flat-side of the trowel and then immediately come back with a second coat using the notches side of the trowel.
5. Laying the tiles: The tiles are then places one at a time in the thin-set using a twisting and pressing motion while allowing appropriate spacing for the grout. A straight edge is used to align the tile.
6. Tamping: The tiles are then tamped in using a rubber mallet to assure good contact with the thin-set.
7. Grouting: The installer will generally begin with grouting the following day. It is important to allow the thin-set enough time to set up before applying the grout.
The grout it applied over a small section and is spread by meants of a rubber float or a squeegee. Rubbing the grout firmly over the surface will push the grout into the joints and clean off most of the excess.
After approximately ten minutes the surface of the tile is cleaned with a damp cheesecloth.