Laying 600x600 Porcelain Tiles MYSELF 1ST TIME!!

Discussion in 'Getting Started FAQ' started by Esined, May 9, 2018.

  1. Esined

    Esined New Member

    I am going to lay my own floor tiles in my small lounge and kitchen ......(have all materials and 70 tiles..!) any advice would be much appreciated and really needed!
    I'm nearly 50 years old and have a few health problems so will be taking it slow!
    I cannot at all afford to employ a tiler so this is not an option!!
    Thank you so much in advance and kind regards Dee x (female by the way!)
  2. CGN

    CGN Screwfix Select

    What is the floor made of as this will determine the approach?

    If concrete, then potentially easier.

    If wood, then there must be be virtually zero flex. You'll need to put a decoupling membrane down such as Ditra. This is expensive, but without it, the tikes will likely crack.

    Regardless, making the floor as flat as possible will save you a massive headache. Thus is usually achieved by using a self levelling compound.

    Getting the layout correct is important to the overall look and usually involves working from centre lines. Depending on how many door ways, it often look good to have a full tile at the start of a doorway, but not always a achievable.

    Using the correct primer (usually SBR) and the correct adhesive (flexible bagged) and the correct trowel, 10mm minimum. Rapid set is often used for fkoor tiles, but I would advise a standard set which will give you longer working time. Consider using a tile levelling system (clips and wedges) as that'll help you minimise lippage.

    There is lots to learn and tbh, you've chosen quite a hard project to learn on. Google will help with some of my suggestions. Good luck
    Esined and WillyEckerslike like this.
  3. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Screwfix Select

    Are the tiles ceramic or porcelain ?

    Will also depend on what adhesive you use as many not suitable for porcelain

    Also do you have a decent tile cutter that will take large format tiles

    As above, do plenty of research before you start, advice on this site for sure but also plenty of you tube tutorials

    Planning and prep is everything here before you start, you need to know where every tile will land and where your cuts are going to be, leaving what amount of tile on the floor. Don’t want to end up with slivers at edges

    Good luck
    Esined likes this.
  4. rogerk101

    rogerk101 Screwfix Select

    I do DIY of all sorts, but no other DIY project is as impacted by good/bad planning as tiling is.

    Unfortunately, having now laid a lot of tiles on floors and walls in many rooms of many houses, I've become super-critical of others' tiling efforts. I can't visit a tiled room without inspecting it for flaws. Sometimes it's just the little things, but other times it's blindingly obvious that someone just started on one side and worked their way across to the other side, and the whole room ends up with a lopsided effect. Sometimes badly laid floor tiles make a perfectly horizontal floor look like it's sloping. I'd go as far as to say that the 3 most important things in tiling are:
    • planning
    • planning
    • planning
    Esined likes this.
  5. Dr Bodgit

    Dr Bodgit Super Member

    Its the 7Ps.

    Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents **** Poor Performance.
    KIAB and Esined like this.
  6. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Thank you so much for the advice!
    It's a concrete floor...porcelain tiles!
    If I lay them out first can I then just concrete them on?
    Many thanks (again!)
    I'll probably drive you all mad with questions as I go along....if I don't turn into a raving lunatic first!!! Ha ha ha!
  7. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Screwfix Select

    Er NO..... you can’t ‘just concrete them on’ :eek:

    Gosh, without being rude (honestly), uv got a lot of learning to do in a short space of time

    Do you have any prior diy experience I wonder, any tiling or other tasks

    It’s just that we all have to start somewhere, I’m diy me, but even the pros on here started at the same basic level - we were all newbies once :)

    Just if tiling your floor is ur introduction to the wonderful world of diy, you’ve gone in at a fairly tough level in all honestly

    Take some time and ask questions here but also take a look at online tutorials

    Porcelain tiles are hard, what cutter are you using for ur cuts ?
    Esined likes this.
  8. Dr Bodgit

    Dr Bodgit Super Member

    Of course you don't concrete them on, you cement them on :rolleyes:

    A lot to learn here...where's the planning?

    Substrate needs to be flat, level and suitable

    Then you're going to need adhesive, right? the proper kind of adhesive.

    And the tiles will need cutting, porcelain are difficult to cut (so I've heard), no idea myself what's suitable to cut them with.
    Esined likes this.
  9. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Sorry....I meant cement!!!! lol!
    I have a tile cutter but was going to use a water (don't know name!) one instead ?
    Oh and I've watched and watched videos on YouTube as well........ and I have all the 'correct' materials ....honest!!
    Oh....& one more thing. ....just to make it a bit more difficult I want glitter grout as well!
    Last edited: May 10, 2018
  10. rogerk101

    rogerk101 Screwfix Select

    If you're buying a water cooled tile saw, make sure it's big enough to handle 600x600 tiles ... most are no where near big enough, and the ones that are, are pretty pricey.
    I have just tiled using 600x600 tiles and unfortunately my wet saw wasn't big enough for many of the cuts, so I had to rough cut them with an angle grinder and then just clean up the rough cuts with the wet saw.
    If you're new to this, then you should only use the slow set adhesive, as this will give you plenty of time for working. The draw back is that you should ideally leave it for a good 24 hours or more before walking/kneeling on it for grouting. You'll be glad you went for the slow set in the long run. It's usually a better adhesive and is also more flexible.
    Esined likes this.
  11. CGN

    CGN Screwfix Select

    Easy to say, but research and find a reputable tiler to do it. You will save money.
    Jord86, KIAB and Esined like this.
  12. Esined

    Esined New Member

    I have researched no end! I waited for the sale to purchase the tiles and got them for £700 instead of paying the full price of nearly double. I didn't realise until after I had bought them that to lay them down by a professional would be between £400 to £750!!! I definitely cannot afford anywhere near this as I am a single mum on disability! Thank you for any advice to help me lay the tiles though looks like I really need it. Ha ha ha!
  13. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Would you believe the tile company sent me quick drying cement as he thought it would be a professional tiler that would be laying them! LOL!!
  14. CGN

    CGN Screwfix Select

    Whereabouts are you?
  15. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Chigwell / Hainault in Essex!
  16. CGN

    CGN Screwfix Select

    Miles away. Anything is possible, I admire the determination. Can you post some dimensions of your floor?
    Esined likes this.
  17. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Lounge is approx. 14ft by 13ft
    Kitchen is approx. 14ft by 10ft
  18. CGN

    CGN Screwfix Select

    So you have tiles and adhesive?
  19. Esined

    Esined New Member

    Yes and grout with spacers ....along with a few tools!!
  20. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Screwfix Select

    Check that adhesive ur using is suitable for porcelain tiles - some aren’t
    Esined likes this.

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