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How to Install Tile on a Bathroom Floor

When it comes to tiling, all you need is the right materials and a little patience and you can have a beautiful back-splash, shower, floor, or any other tiled area. In this how-to, our home improvement experts explain the steps behind tiling a bathroom floor.

Before you lay your tile floor, you’ll want to make sure you have an underlay. If you don’t already, follow these steps to install one:

  1. Measure your bathroom floor, then use a circular saw to cut your cement board underlay into panels you can easily fit together.
  2. Once the panels are laid across your floor, use a drill to drive screws through the underlay and into your sub-floor (space them about 6 inches apart and make sure they lay flat).

Next, it’s time to lay your tile floor.

  1. If you’re laying any trim along the edges of your floor, do that first before you start on your tile work.
  2. Lay the tiles out on the floor to determine exactly where you want to put them. (Try to lay them so you use as many whole tiles as possible.)
  3. Install your spacers between the tiles to make sure they’re square and evenly spaced.
  4. Once you’ve determined your layout, use your tile saw to cut any tiles that need to be smaller.
  5. After you’ve once again determined your layout, remove your tiles and apply a coating of thin-set mortar to the floor using a notched trowel.
  6. Lay your tiles and spacers down on top of the mortar and let the mortar dry about 24 hours.
  7. Once the mortar is dry, remove the spacers and apply grout to fill in the spaces between the tiles.
  8. After applying all of your grout, use a damp sponge to wipe away any excess. Make sure you thoroughly clean your tiles to avoid grout haze.
  9. Wait at least 24 hours before walking on your new tile bathroom floor.

Tools & Materials

  • Circular Saw
  • Cement Board
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • Ceramic Tiles
  • Tile Spacers
  • Tile Saw
  • Thin-Set Mortar
  • Notched Trowel
  • Grout
  • Damp Sponge

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