wwxl Tile Floors August 10th, 2018 - 09:53:10
In residential settings. the most common substrates [surfaces to be tiled] for flooring are wood and cement. In this article we`ll deal with deal with wood subfloors. In new construction. it`s often possible to see the structure of the subfloor and joists and usually communicate with the carpenters who built them or the contractor in charge of the project if there are any questions. In remodeling. however. sometimes one can only guess who installed the floor and how strong it is. Maybe it`s as strong as a battleship. or maybe it`s about to fall through to the basement. If a property owner is trying to install the floor himself. he or she may wonder how to know if the subfloor is strong enough. Let`s start with the technical and then translate it to the everyday way to tell.
Tile floor installation is a clear-cut process. Once your contractor has determined your sub-floor can handle the weight and rigidity of tile. he designs a "map" so that the tile is straight. Next. adhesive is spread. and the tiles are "squished" into it. A level is used on each tile to make certain it is flush. and a rubber mallet can tamp down any spot that`s higher than the rest. Spacers are placed between tiles. until the adhesive dries them into place. Border tiles are cut to size and laid. The spaces are grouted. and when it is dry the tiles are cleaned. and sealed.
Is there an unfinished ceiling below to look up and measure the distance between joists and the condition of the wood below and how long the unsupported span is? A few minutes in the basement with a flashlight and tape measure can let you know if you have a winner (thick and deep joists. spaced closely together. in good condition. with a narrow span). or a loser (thin and shallow joists. irregularly spaced or spaced far apart. in bad condition. with a long span).
For tile to be successful. it needs rigid support. with very little tolerance for movement. The more rigid the substrate. the better chance the tile has of remaining crack free throughout its life. Most problems with tile floors over wood come from excessive `bounciness` of the substrate. Carpet can handle some bending. vinyl tile can flex and bend a bit. hardwood floors can bend a little too. but if tile or stone is subjected to forces that push in 2 different directions at once. it doesn`t know how to bend. Instead. it cracks. first in the grout and then in the body of the tile. Consumers who have just paid thousands of dollars for a tile floor do not find these cracks appealing. to say the least.