I wanted to say the same thing, but I was chicken :o) Anything as
permanent and easy to muck up should be done by a pro. Hubby and I
contemplated doing it ourselves. Then his best buddy offered to "help"
and I almost had a nervous breakdown AND ended my marriage. His buddy
thinks he knows everything, which precludes him ever learning anything
new. Watched him put down pavers over a concrete walk, checking each
paver with a level. They are all "level", but not with each other.
Different heights, which makes the walk stay puddly.
We did a lot of research before choosing tile, and other than ordering
imported tile shortly before 9/11 we did fine. The contractor had a guy
who came out to undercut the baseboards and door trim beforehand, so's
the tile goes under it, not up to. Looks much better than grout glopped
up against door frames. Ran a bead of caulk around the room when all
was done, using masking tape to keep it out of the grout lines. Helped
during a recent flood to contain the water that reached our dining room
and kept it from soaking the baseboards :o)
When we first relocated to Arizona we built a home in which we tiled every
floor in the house except the master bedroom, total tiled area was 2600 sq.
ft. What a royal PITA. Having a "cold" floor was a good thing, but the
maintenance was a nightmare. The grout had to be steam-cleaned twice a
year at substantial cost. We vacuumed frequently as one would do with any
flooring surface, but the tile required washing at least once a month to
look its best. That's a LOT of floor to wash and dry. Never again!
Like others have said: make sure the floor is perfectly flat... small
differences in height are QUITE noticeable.
When you grout, put the sealant down as soon as possible (whatever that
is...you have to let the grout dry for 1 month(?) by then it's stained in
the kitchen, and what a chore trying to get that back to a champagne
Choose your tile carefully...mine as all these little pits in it as part of
the texture, and the dirt gets in and stays in, really hard to really clean
it. If I had known, I would have chosen a smoother tile.
Would anyone know if it's worth my while to remove some of the tiles that
are uneven, and retry to level these? I have lots of extras.
Like: attractive, sturdy, easy-clean. Dislike: cold in winter; hard on
the feet. A later post mentions strategic rugs, which modifies the
'cons' considerably. Cold on the feet in winter is pleasantly cool, or
at least neutral, in summer.
|Like: attractive, sturdy, easy-clean. Dislike: cold in winter; hard on
|the feet. A later post mentions strategic rugs, which modifies the
|'cons' considerably. Cold on the feet in winter is pleasantly cool, or
|at least neutral, in summer.
Two words: Radiant heat
Rex in Fort Worth
We have about 1700 sf of ceramic tile in our 2600 sf house, everywhere
but a small area in the living room and the bedrooms. We love it and
are considering replacing the carpet in the living room with tile and
an area rug also. One big advantage that we hadn't even thought of,
our aging female dog became incontinent, but fortunately only went on
the tiled area, so easy to clean up. She loves the tile and hardly
ever goes on the rugs. We got her on estrogen (if you can believe
that) and it took care of the problem with only an occasional
"accident". We experimented with cleaning, as it is a light color and
does show the dirt. Found that Armstrong "Once and Done" does a great
job, very easy to mop it on, don't have to rinse, only needs to be
done about every 3 or 4 months. In between, we run a swiffer over it.
Ours was professionally installed, but I did do a repair on a small
section in a rental house I owned, and it was very easy. I just took
the pieces that needed to be cut to Home Depot and they cut them for
me. They rent wet saws if you're doing a big job. The key is, as
others have pointed out, to have an absloutely flat surface, and use
those little spacer things.
Hope this helps. I would never want wood floors again, even though
they are beatutiful.
I don't know if anyone has mentioned it yet but walk carefully in stocking
feet until you get the feel of things. Especially if it's going to be a
glazed tile -- it can be pretty slick.
Giselle (you'll be zooming through rooms faster than you can yell for help)
I tried to email this but the address didn't work. My apologies for
sending this to the group, but at least I'm marking it OT and it's not
> even thought of, our aging female dog became incontinent, but
> fortunately only went on the tiled area, so easy to clean up. She
> loves the tile and hardly ever goes on the rugs. We got her on
> estrogen (if you can believe that) and it took care of the problem
> with only an occasional "accident". We experimented with cleaning,
Our older female dog also has incontinence and she is taking
phenylpropanolamine (the same stuff they pulled off the OTC market, but
evidently it doesn't cause strokes in dogs) and the vet recommended it
as being cheaper and safer than hormones. If you are not particularly
happy about having your dog on hormones, you might ask them about it.
Price comparison done at www.1800petmeds.com:
50 mg Proin (our 40-lb dog's dose: 0.39 per tablet, one tablet a day
Megestrol 20 mg tablet: 0.99 per tablet, I have no idea what the dose
would be but it would give you an idea of how the same place would price
I know God will not give me anything I can't handle.
I just wish that He didn't trust me so much. - Mother Teresa
About a year ago, I had tile installed in all of my 2,000 sq ft home, except
for the 3 bedrooms, that still are carpeted.
I have absolutely LOVED living with the tile, and would strongly recommend
it to (almost) anyone! Exceptions might be families with very young
children, or with elderly occupants, as the very hard surface would be
dangerous in the event of a fall.
I feel that my home is much cleaner, as I capture much more dirt/dust/animal
hair now from the tile, than I ever realized was in the carpet. If desired,
area rugs can be used to soften the look; these would probably be used even
with carpet, to anchor various seating or table areas in rooms.
I have two cats and a dog, and any (very infrequent) cleanups are a snap.
Two words: Tired feet.
While I love my ceramic tile I installed in the masterbath, my wife
swore to never have a hard surface under her feet again in the
kitchen. You WILL get tired of standing on it for any length of time.
Btw, you can put rubber pads where you stand but then your trying to
fix an unnesesary problem.
I stay with hardwoods, laminates, or vinyl.
I'm putting in 2200 sq ft of tile, so I don't think you've got "a lot
of area". My current house here has over 1000 sq ft and my other
house has about 800 sq ft. I started with tiling halls and baths,
then tiling everything but bedrooms, and now I'm tiling everything but
the living and dining rooms and guest casita, mostly to save a little
money on upgrades.
The bad parts? Noisy, cold, a bit fragile. Wear shoes when you're
spending time in the kitchen or you'll pay; it doesn't absorb energy,
so your feet, joints, and back will hate it if you spend a lot of time
The good parts? Cool underfoot in the summer, easy to clean, easy for
a wheelchair user, looks very nice, adds to resale value if in good
shape. As long as you don't drop pointy stuff on it, you can treat it
with absolute abandon. Dogs and cats, particularly those with long
coats (I have rough-coated collies) just love it in the summer. I
love it being easy to clean up after said dogs and cats.
Get the grout sealed by a company that offers more than a one-year
guarantee. Our grout sealers gave us a five-year guarantee. Don't
use scrub brushes on the sealed grout.
Let's see, what else? Don't use a sponge mop because it doesn't clean
the grout joints properly. Put energy-absorbing rugs or pads in front
of the kitchen sink and, if you use one while standing, the ironing
board. An area rug in the dining room will reduce the noise levels
but you lose the easy cleaning advantage.
Mary Shafer Retired aerospace research engineer
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