laying ceramic floor tiles

Hi
I have lay a large area of ceramic floor tiles.
The floor is reasonably flat (having covered it with 12mm ply and hundreds of screws) and the tiles are quite large (45cm by 45cm). I dont believe they are any particualr special type of tiles - reasonably cheap and came from Topps.
I had intended spread the adhesive and use an adhesive comb as with every other tiling I have ever done. However, the kitchen fitter returned today and recommended "dot and dab" by which I took him to mean "a splodge in each corner and one in hte middle". He said that this was particualrly important as the tiles were large and the flat is not perfectly flat (although its not far off).
I would have thought that even with the floor not perfect, the more adhesive supporting the tiles the better ? is this not the case ? any advise gratefully received.
Thanks
Tim
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they
each
important
not
adhesive
You could argue about this I suppose. Let's put it this way, the gold standard for laying tiles IMO would be a solid bed. Dot and Dab would be used purely for the ease of application and adjustment. Were you to gauge the amount of adhesive in each dot/dab correctly and position the dot/dabs just right you could probably achieve nearly solid coverage anyway, but that would take skill.
I would go with your adhesive comb approach if I were you, just to err on the side of caution, as long as you are happy that you can position the tiles correctly and also get them all level and at the same height using a spirit level/straightedge. I find getting the level/tilt of a tile the most difficult thing when dealing with a solid bed of adhesive/cement underneath
Andy.
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Tim Smith wrote:

Sounds like bollocks to me. I've never seen pros do that. I have seen amatuers do it though and guess what? Tiles cracked.

YES is this not the case ? any advise

Justtiles in Reading specify the correct way to do it.
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Tim Smith wrote:

I hate dot and dab because you always end up with a ricking tile somewhere.
I have done similar to this.
I assume floor is wooden suspended? That means you need a thickish bed of flexible adhesive. I used an Ardurit one, since its made locally.
What ypui should do is lay a string across the middle of teh floor at fished tile height, and one at right angles to it first, to checkl general flatness. A large level is useful if you want a level as well as flat floor.
A network of strings is good if yopu have covcerns over localised 'high spots'
Adjust everything until you have a sensible - (4-6mm) bed thickness for the cement. You can go deeper vt watch out for slumping. Thinner is a recipe for cracking off. DAMHITK.
Buy a whisk for the cement, and mix it in bucketfuls at a time as thick as you can. Especially if its not rapid set (most flexibles are not IME). Slump is the greatest enemy.
Use a trowel and or plaster float to layer the stuff down thick, along the string line and tamp down with a rubber hammer using trowel to clear any excess. Beware of any air pockets, but it is allowed to score the top to get some give when tamping. Use small level to get level.
Clean any cement of show face immediately with sponge and cold water. Rinse and squeeeze sponge EVERY stroke and squeeze out. Its quicker than trying to clean set cement off the tiles believe me. Dried tile cement after slump, is the second worst enemy.
Work a whole line down the center to start, then using work out from there. Finish edges with cut tiles as needed. never lay from walls to center.
Take frequent breaks, and if possible leave overnight if you need to stand on one bit to lay another. I found watching/listening to test matches ideal..as its totally boring work.
When its all done, grout up with (I use BAL) grout. use at least 5mm spacing - I used 3 mm and it is not as nice as the bathroom..
Wghen grouring was off surplus with sponge water trick as well. Cleaning dried grout is the third worst enemy.
When all dry, go over with limescale remover or bricak acid to lift any dried grout thats left, and repeat the wahing process several tomes wih a squeegee mop.
You will have a perfect floor for about 3 hours until SWMBO starts using it. Then it will rapidly deteiorate to the usual ground in coffee stains, bits of squashed fruit and cat excrement that any normal household uses to protect the floor with ;-)

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So it's a wood floor?

You need a thick bed adhesive designed for this sort of thing which needs to remain slightly flexible. Otherwise you'll end up with broken tiles.

--
*I used to have an open mind but my brains kept falling out *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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