How to Install a Porcelain Tile Floor--Laying the Tile

hand on a square of porcelain tile
  • 4-300 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 0-5,000

Once you have started installing a porcelain tile floor, there is a specific process you need to follow to see the project through. After the preparation has been completed, it is all about getting started laying the tile and getting the job underway. Here are the basics of how to continue your porcelain tile floor installation.

Step 1 - Mark the Starting Point

If you are starting to lay tile against a wall, this process is very easy. You can simply put the tile right up against the wall and work away from the wall. However, if you are not starting to lay the tiles directly up against the wall, the process gets a little bit more complicated. You will need to mark a line on the floor and then install something to lay the tile up against.

After you have determined where you want to start by laying out the tiles, you need to mark a line on the floor. You can do this with a chalk line or a marker. Make sure the line is straight and parallel with the wall.

You will then need to install a furring strip to the floor. This is a piece of wood or metal you can install on a temporary basis in order to have something to lay the tile up against. You can attach the furring strip to the floor with adhesive or nails. You will later be able to remove this strip and lay tile where it is located.

Step 2 - Mix the Adhesive

laying tile flooring

Once you are ready to start laying tile, you will first need to mix up your adhesive. Most of the time, the adhesive will come in large bags. You will need to dump the adhesive mix into a bucket. Read the side of the bag to determine how much water you will need to mix with the adhesive.

Pour in the appropriate amount of water and then begin mixing. There is actually an attachment that will work with a standard drill to help you mix up the adhesive. However, if you do not have this attachment, you can use any kind of stick or trowel to do it for you.

Step 3 - Install the First Tile

After the adhesive is mixed up, you can start to install the first tile. Use a trowel to place some of the adhesive on the ground right next to the furring strip. Smooth out the adhesive over the floor with your v-notched trowel. Make sure the adhesive is evenly applied to the floor. You can then press the tile down into the adhesive directly up against the furring strip.

Step 4 - The Next Tiles

You will then need to use tile spacers on the corners of the first tile to get the appropriate spacing for the next tile. Press the next tile directly up against the spacers. Use a level to check the tile you have just laid. Continue with this process of using spacers and laying all of the uncut tiles.