How to Install Ceramic Tile

Written by: Brent Holland
DIY Specialist
(800) 375-3403

Laying tile can be more challenging than standard DIY projects, but with time and patience it can save you quite a bit of money. The most important part is starting with a flat surface.

Tools / Materials:

- Tile Cutter

- Angle Grinder with Masonry Blade

- Sponge

- Notched trowel

- Tile Spacers

- Rubber Float

- Knee Pads


Shop Tile Flooring and Shop Tile Installation Tools

Step by Step Instructions

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 1

Step 1:

Lay out tiles and cut accordingly. Since most walls are not square, you need to start in a straight line and then lay the tiles.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 2

Step 2:

Make round cuts with the grinder. Mark a line and score with the grinder until you completely cut through. Note: Using a diamond blade can work better.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 3

Step 3:

Make straight cuts with the tile cutter. You do not always need a wet tile saw, a more affordable slide tile cutter works well on basic cuts.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 4

Step 4:

Spread adhesive with the notched trowel. You want to work in small areas and spread straight, even lines.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 5

Step 5:

Lay tile down on the adhesive. Do not put pressure on the tile; simply make sure that the tile are laying flat.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 6

Step 6:

Add tile spacers to keep straight lines. Let the adhesive cure for 24 hours.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 7

Step 7:

Wet tiles with a sponge. This makes cleaning up the grout from the tile easier.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 8

Step 8:

Add grout to all the gaps with a rubber float. Make sure to fill in all the gaps thoroughly.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 9

Step 9:

Diagonally spread grout from one tile to another tile. Avoid following the grain because this can cause you to pull the grout out of the gaps. Allow the grout to cure for 15 minutes, but no longer, then you can clean off the excess grout.

How to Install Ceramic Tiles: Step 10

Step 10:

Clean off the grout with a wrung out sponge. Work in a circular motion to avoid pulling out the grout. Work on 3 to 4 tiles at a time. Let the grout cure for 24 hours before thoroughly cleaning and spraying grout sealer.

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