How to Lay Slate Tile Flooring How to Lay Slate Tile Flooring
Slate tile flooring is popular thanks to its high durability and rustic appearance. Due to the high durability of slate tile, it is often best suited to the most heavily walked-in areas of your house such as hallways, corridors and kitchens. It is also a good choice for bathrooms thanks to it being very slip-proof. Slate is a completely natural product that has been used for flooring for an extremely long time. Slate tiles are available in many different styles, sizes and colors so you can be sure that you will find something suitable for your home. Installing slate tile is much like installing ceramic tile or any other type.
Step 1 – Prepare the Surface
Before you begin, it is imperative that proper preparations are taken to make sure that the installation goes smoothly. Ensure that the surface is completely smooth and flat before laying any tiles. If there is any damage in a concrete subfloor, make sure that this is patched up first and that the repaired areas are sanded down so that they are level with the rest of the floor. You may also need to trim back the bottoms of the doors and their frames if the slate floor surface will be higher than the floor which was previously in place. After cleaning and preparing the subfloor, you can also install sheets of backerboard for better insulation and an easier installation.
Step 2 – Lay the Tiles
Determine the pattern in which you will lay the tiles and decide on the area that you want to start from. Draw chalk lines on the floor to illustrate the layout. Arrange the tiles on the floor. Mix a batch of mortar, following the manufacturer’s instructions provided. Spread this onto a small area of the floor using a trowel. Spread a thin layer on the back of the tile and put it in place, twisting it slightly so that it adheres well. Continue installing the rest of the tiles in the same manner. When you need to cut the tiles, use a tile cutter with a suitable masonry blade. To cut notches in tiles to go around smaller things such as plumbing fixtures, use tile nippers. Before grouting and sealing, allow the floor to dry over night when complete.
Step 3 – Grout the Tiles
Mix the grout following the instructions on the pack. Firmly pack the grout into the joints by using a grout float. Be sure to remove any excess grout using a wet sponge as you work. You must do this before the grout can dry, because it will be impossible later. Wait for the grout to dry before proceeding to seal the floor.
Step 4 – Seal the Floor
You do not have to seal the floor, but it is better if you do as it will be shinier, more durable and easier to clean. Apply 2 coats of the sealant several hours apart. Finally, leave the floor overnight before using it.