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Installing floor tiles in the kitchen - step by step

Updated: Apr 21, 2022

Tiles on the kitchen floor are a very practical solution. Thanks to the wide range of colours and patterns, we can obtain a floor that will match the entire arrangement of this room. What should be prepared and how to lay tiles on the kitchen floor step by step so that they come out evenly and aesthetically.

Step 1: Preparation of the substrate

Before tiling, the substrate must be properly prepared. It must be compact, without cracks and gaps, and be load-bearing. Such a substrate cannot bend under the pressure of a person's weight, because after some time the tiles will come loose. In case of cracks, we can fill them with glue or opt for a self-levelling screed. Before starting work, the floor should be vacuumed and washed with water and an alkaline solution. If we know that our substrate is absorbent, we need to use an appropriate priming emulsion, which will increase its resistance to moisture. We can paint the substrate twice for a better effect.

Step 2: Layout "dry"

Before laying tiles with adhesive, it is worth planning everything "dry" first. This layout will allow us to minimize the number of tiles needed to be cut, and we will have the opportunity to see what the effect will look like. Lay out everything in such a way that the entire tiles are in the most visible places, and those that will possibly be cut under the kitchen furniture or elsewhere. Also take into account the width of the joints when arranging this. We can arrange the tiles in several ways: straight, checked, staggered or mixed. The choice of the method of laying is your decision. Cut the ceramic tiles with a tile cutter to get even edges.

Step 3: Laying the tiles

After laying the tiles "dry", you need to prepare an adhesive mortar. When choosing it, make sure that it is suitable for the tiles we have. There are different adhesives for ceramic tiles and a different ones for porcelain tiles, for example. We prepare the adhesive mortar according to the manufacturer's recommendations. It is best not to add the water "by eye" so that it retains its properties. Spread the adhesive mortar on the substrate using a notched trowel. Start laying the tiles from the wall farthest from the entrance to the kitchen, with the first row consisting of whole tiles. Place the tiles on the distributed layer and press them to the substrate with a rubber hammer. We will manage to keep the appropriate spacing between individual tiles by using tile spacers. Using a spirit level, check that the tiles are even and do not stick out from the rest of the tiles. After laying all the tiles, remove the excess adhesive from the tiles and between them and let them dry for about 24 hours.

Step 4: Grouting

Each tile, regardless of whether it is laid on the floor or on the wall, should be jointed. If we do not use joints, the tile cladding may lose its tightness. The material with which we grout should fill the gap in 100%. In the case of the floor, it is recommended to pour the joint and spread it. For an aesthetic appearance, after applying the joint, it must be wiped with a wet sponge when it starts to dry. In this way, we will obtain a uniform texture of the joint, as well as an even shade of colour. In turn, in the corners of the room, where the greatest stresses are concentrated, it is worth using silicone. We apply it with a special gun, and then smooth it with a finger dipped in dishwashing liquid. At the walls, we can use skirting boards.

If you are not confident in your abilities, you can call Tiling Helenski.

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