Ceramic tiles are most often used to decorate bathroom surfaces. The material is practical and resistant to aggressive microclimate, which is why it is very popular.
However, unlike alternative methods of wall cladding The technology of mounting tiles is quite complicated for inexperienced craftsmen. Not everyone can afford to attract professionals to work, so in this article we will tell you where to start laying tiles in the bathroom, how to do the job and get a good result.
Proper surface preparation is the key to successful wall decoration
In the technology of wall cladding with tiles, special attention is paid to the proper preparation of the surface, since the quality of subsequent work depends on it. To start laying tiles in the bathroom should be an assessment of the condition of the base. Particular attention should be paid to the following points:
- the material from which the walls were erected;
- the presence of the old finish and its appearance;
- the strength of the plaster layer ( if any);
- the curvature of the walls;
- the presence of defects.
If you are dealing with a flat concrete wall, the cladding can begin immediately after priming. If you have an old finish, you will have to dismantle it, after which various bumps may appear on the wall that need to be fixed.
In houses with municipal finishes, the walls of the bathroom are often painted. Before laying the tile, it must be removed. Water-based compositions can be simply washed off, and oil ones must be cleaned, which requires a lot of work.
If the paint is not removed with a spatula, notches are made before laying the tiles in the bathroom on the wall, after which the entire surface is covered with concrete contact.
Curved walls with a large number of flaws are necessarily plastered and smoothed using putty. After leveling, the surface is twice covered with a primer layer.
Pay attention to the condition of the floor. If it is characterized by large differences in height or has many cracks, defects should be eliminated by installing a layer of a new cement screed.
What tools and materials will be required during the work?
Preparation for laying tiles in bathroom begins with the acquisition of the necessary materials and tools. Their list depends on the type of base and the presence of old finishes. The basic set is as follows:
- tile adhesive;
- plastic cross stitches;
- primer for deep penetration;
- concrete contact (if the surfaces are too smooth or covered with paint);
- composition for grouting.
If the base is to be leveled, plaster mix will be required for work . In this case, the start of laying the tiles in the bathroom will be postponed for several days until the plastered surface is completely dry.
Of the tools you will need:
- a comb for applying the mortar;
- a grinder with a diamond blade;
- a bowl (for applying primers);
- building level;
- measuring tool;
- pencil or marker for marking walls and cladding;
- tile cutter (can be replaced grinder).
When leveling the walls, a plumb line and a long rule for applying plaster are used. If there are large irregularities, the plaster is applied on the beacons.
The technology of leveling the base
If the walls are sufficiently curved, moldy or have many defects, the question of where to start laying tiles in the bathroom, has one correct answer: from alignment.
The technology for carrying out these works consists of the following sequential actions:
- The old plaster and all loose elements are cleaned from the surface.
- The walls are primed.
- Plaster is applied to the surface with a wide trowel th composition and distributed over the entire wall with a broad rule. Work is carried out in the direction from the bottom up.
- If the walls have differences of more than 5 mm, the plaster is applied along the beacons. They are set using a plumb line every 0.6 meters. After the solution has dried, the beacons are removed from the walls, the remaining grooves are filled with the same plaster composition.
When the plaster dries, the walls are coated with a primer. After that, you can proceed with the installation of the tile.
Please noteIf the surface is smooth enough, but too smooth (monolithic, block), be sure to cover it with putty or concrete contact. Otherwise, the tile with the adhesive solution will simply slide down from the base.
How to start laying tiles in the bathroom: from the walls or the floor?
You can start the installation of tile cladding from both the walls and the floor. In the first version, the masters explain their choice by the fact that in the process of working with the walls, the floor covering will quickly get dirty and lose its original appearance. A building tool accidentally dropped from a height can completely disable a new tile, so you have to be extremely careful in the process.
If you start working from the walls, you don’t have to worry about preserving the appearance of the floor, but you need to take into account that the fact that the tile and adhesive solution will certainly raise the level of the base.
Therefore, if you give preference to this installation option, the beginning of laying the tiles in the bathroom on the walls will be a preliminary calculation of the height of the future floor. Based on the result, the height of the first row of wall tiles is determined. On vertical bases, appropriate marking is made, from which the master begins the installation of the decorative coating.
Start of work: marking the work surface
Wall and floor decoration begins with a study of the project, which indicates the location of decorative elements and the direction of the layout. In most stores, a project is given out when buying a tile. If such a service is not provided, the plan can be drawn up independently. To do this, take into account the perimeter of the room, the height of the walls and the dimensions of the tile itself.
Using chalk or marker marks the entire surface of the floor. The tile is applied to the base, put a mark. By moving the tiles on the floor, the entire base is marked. The walls are marked using a similar method.
Where to start laying tiles in the bathroom, the master determines based on the selected layout method. Tiles can be laid directly and diagonally. In the first case, work begins from the far corner, and in the second, between two opposite angles. Further, the cladding is continued above the first row and below it.
Floor cladding technology
You can start laying tiles on the floor in the bathroom from several places. Most often, three basic principles of work are used:
- Facing starts from the far visible angle. This is the most popular method. Its essence lies in the fact that the laying of tiles starts from the far corner, located opposite the entrance. However, if you plan to install a bathtub or shower in the indicated area, the feasibility of such installation is lost.
- Laying starts from the front door. In this case, the first tile is placed in the corner, which is located next to the entrance. This allows you to hide cropped pieces of tile under the plumbing, and place beautiful solid tiles at the entrance.
- The tile is laid from the center of the room. This method is rarely used, as it is suitable for spacious rooms where the central part of the floor remains free. It is advisable to use it in those cases when the main pattern (decor) is located in the center of the room. Then the cladding is carried out around the decor.
In the latter version, it is very important to understand where to start laying the tiles. In the bathroom, marking the center is quite simple. For this, the width of each wall is measured, a mark is made strictly in the middle. From the resulting 4 points, lines are drawn to the center of the room. The intersection of all segments will be the center of the room.
After marking, they begin to lay the lining. On the back of the tile with the help of a notched trowel, glue is applied and distributed over its entire surface. Next, the tile is laid on the base and pressed lightly.
If the floor is fairly even, use a minimal layer of glue. If there are differences, they are compensated by adjusting the thickness of the adhesive. In this case, the work is constantly monitored using the level.
In the instructions for laying tiles in the bathroom, special emphasis is placed on the arrangement of the first row, since the correctness of the execution of subsequent work depends on it. . It is important to accurately determine its height, especially in those cases when the walls are first lined, and not the floor.
The first step is to determine the location of the side cladding elements. If the whole tiles do not fit along the edges of the row, the cropping is shifted to the most inconspicuous corner, and only the whole tile remains visible.
Pay attentionWhen drawing up the layout, always take into account the thickness of the joints between the tiles. Otherwise, the lining will shift to one side.
Next, proceed with laying the tiles in the bathroom with your own hands. Detailed instructions include the following:
- A line is drawn along the bottom edge of the wall where the cladding will begin. A wooden plank or metal profile is attached to it. This element will indicate the beginning of the row and will not allow the tile to slide down.
- The adhesive composition is mixed in the prepared container.
- Using a notched trowel, the finished mixture is applied to the base in an even layer. It is not necessary to smear the tile with glue.
- Tile is carefully applied to the wall and pressed so that there are no voids under the lining.
- The second element is fixed in the same way.
- Between plastic crosses are installed with two tiles to control the thickness of the seams.
- After fixing the first row, the lining should be tapped with a mallet. The correctness of the masonry is checked by the building level. Thus, the first 4 rows are laid out. The masonry is continued only after a short break necessary for setting the mortar.
When the wall is completely dry, the support strip can be removed and transferred to the next surface. A similar method is used to veneer all the walls in the room.
Features of tile trim
When all the whole tiles are fixed on the walls, they proceed to work with pieces of cladding. To cut an element of the desired size, use a tile cutter or grinder. The first tool is suitable for direct cutting. It greatly facilitates the work when it is necessary to lay the tiles on the box.
Start laying tile in the bathroom with a large the number of boxes appropriate from the manufacture of small elements. They are cut to the size of the walls of the box.
If you need to make a hole or a semicircle, use angle grinders. The work is performed using a diamond wheel or stone disc. Mark the tile with a marker or pencil (on both sides). On the front side, a surface cut is made up to a depth of 3 mm. Then cut a hole on the back side. This method avoids chips and cracks in the decorative layer of the tile.
It is more convenient to use a screwdriver to make holes for sockets with a crown of suitable diameter. You can do it with a grinder, but it will be quite difficult for beginners to do such a job.
Processing the seams
When all the tiles are laid and the glue is sufficiently dried, you can proceed to grout the seams. To do this, use special grouting compounds, a rubber roller or a syringe for joints.
First, the space between the tiles is cleaned of dust and glue residue. With a rubber spatula it is filled with grout mixture, the seams are leveled. If the excess grout got on the tile, they should be immediately removed with a damp sponge, since after drying the solution it is quite difficult to do.
After sealing the joints, we start working with the sealant. They process the joints of the tile with plumbing, pipes and the corners of the room. If defects or chips appear on the surface during work, they can also be masked with silicone.
The joints between the floor and the wall are decorated with a decorative baseboard. It gives the finish a sense of completeness and prevents the penetration of moisture to the walls.
Useful tips by professional masters
The technology of laying tiles in the bathroom and photo laying of tiles will help even beginners to cope with the repair. The advice of experienced professionals will not be superfluous either, since in practice difficulties often arise that are not provided for in standard instructions.
Experts recommend taking notes on the following information:
- Not all grout mixtures guarantee the tightness of the joints, therefore, before filling the space between the grouting tiles, the joints should be treated with an antiseptic composition.
- When plastering the walls of the bathroom, it is recommended to use cement compounds, since gypsum analogues do not tolerate moisture.
- If the walls of the room are quite smooth, and the owner cannot afford the use of expensive concrete contact, the surfaces should be covered with a thin layer of tile adhesive ( up to 5 mm). When the base dries, you can start tiling the walls.
If the owner’s budget is too limited, you can save on tiles. It is worth refusing to lay the cladding on the floor under the bathroom and on the wall behind it, so the required number of tiles will decrease by 3-4 square meters. Even with the minimum cost of finishing material, costs are reduced significantly.
So, if you don’t know where to start laying tiles in the bathroom, start by preparing all the surfaces. Remember: even the most experienced craftsman will not be able to beautifully curve curved and fragile walls. Proper preparation guarantees you a good result.