How to Lay Porcelain Tiles in a Shower
Porcelain tiles are easy to install and are available in a variety of sizes, colors and designs to suit your own personal style. Porcelain tiles are harder than ceramic tiles and are less expensive than natural stone. When laying in a shower, be sure use sealed porcelain tiles with solid cement backing.
Step 1 – Safety
Be careful using your wet saw. Put on your protective eyewear before you begin. Turn the power button to the off position before you plug in the saw. Slide the tiles through the wet saw slowly and carefully to prevent any accidental injury or tile damage. Store the wet saw in a safe place when you have finished. Keep children and pets out of the area while you are cutting the tiles. When working on the installation, make sure the room is well ventilated and that the air is circulating properly.
Step 2 – Applying the Mortar to the Shower Walls
Mix your mortar with water according to the directions provided by the manufacturer. Use your pencil and measuring tape to mark the vertical center of the shower walls. Use a notched trowel to apply the mortar to the bottom part of all of the shower walls.
Step 3 – Installing the Porcelain Tiles
Begin at the middle part of the bottom of one of the walls. Install your tiles evenly onto the mortar. Be sure the tiles are laying flat against the wall. Install the entire row of tiles along the joint connecting the wall to the shower floor. Be sure to insert spacers between the tiles. Use your wet saw to make any necessary cuts to fit the tiles. Continue installing the next row of tiles, inserting the spacers between them.
Step 4 – Completing the Wall
Install your porcelain tiles, row by row until you have completed all of the wall space. Use your wet saw to make any necessary cuts to install the tile around the shower plumbing. Allow the tiles enough time to set. Remove the spacers from the walls.
Step 5 – Grouting the Tiles
Begin at the top of the shower walls. Use a grout trowel to apply the grout over the tiles. Press the grout into the spaces between the tiles. Do not grout the corners of the walls or the joints between the walls and the floor. Use a wet sponge to wipe any excess grout off the tiles. Allow the grout to set for two days.
Step 6 – Caulking the Tiles
Insert a tube of caulking into your caulking gun. Apply the caulk to the corners of the walls and the joints where the walls meet the floors. Begin at the top of the walls corners and move downward. Allow the caulk to set for another two days before you use your newly tiled shower.