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Old 04-02-2009, 08:57 AM   #1
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DIY tiling first time?


Hi I'm Sera!

I just bought a home and for the first time, I'm giving things a serious look. I see that the tiling in the bathroom is SUCH a butchered job. There is grout smushed all over the place, some tiles are crooked, at the base even a couple pieces are coming off.

My question is: I have never tiled before. But i'm on a budget, have some time off, and want to do this myself. Can I do this myself and have it look good? I'll be really careful! I really want to.

I'm thinking about what I want to use. Right now it's just really cheap white ceramic 4x4 and the floor is this yucky black and white hexagon so FIFTIES!

Anyway any help or advice would be great!

Thanks!!!

Sera
New Jersey

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Old 04-02-2009, 09:01 AM   #2
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DIY tiling first time?


Many here will help and offer excellent advise. So post all questions and do nothing until you are sure of what you are doing. Send good details of what is going on. Pictures will always help. To get started where is this tile. Floor? Bath? If so, you need to find out what your existing floor structure is. Size of joists. Span of joists. Spacing of joists. And what sub flooring is there now?

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Old 04-02-2009, 12:51 PM   #3
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DIY tiling first time?


My 1st tile job was the bathroom floor
Very small area
Came out very nice
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Old 04-02-2009, 01:12 PM   #4
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DIY tiling first time?


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Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
My 1st tile job was the bathroom floor
Very small area
Came out very nice
Are you offering to do this job for her to help out?
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Old 04-02-2009, 01:31 PM   #5
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DIY tiling first time?


I'm in Jersey too, Sera, and will start my own first tiling project (also a bathroom) in about a month. But if yours turns out well maybe I'll hire you instead. Good luck -- curious to hear how it goes.
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Old 04-04-2009, 11:15 AM   #6
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DIY tiling first time?


Ditto here! I did my first tile job last summer - our bathroom floor. Later this summer I plan to attack our shower.

Three rather random pieces of advice I've found along my research I'll pass along.

1) Use the search function on this site. Tons of good information here if you are willing to dig a bit for it. There are tiling threads on several of the sub-forums here.

2) Start with your floor rather than the shower. Showers require a moisture barrier you will want to research thoroughly before starting.

3) Don't dump any leftover grout down your drain or toilet. I understand it can/will harden (like cement) even under water.
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Old 04-04-2009, 11:38 AM   #7
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DIY tiling first time?


I just completed my first tile job. Also a bathroom. I tiled the floor and used 16" congoleum tiles. It looks great. Let me tell you a few things I learned the hard way.

We only have one bath/shower so I wanted it done quick. I travel a lot for my job so I could get called a way and add weeks to a three day job not to mention I was afraid of screwing it up. So I hired someone to replace the tub and tile the walls. We picked the tiles and faucets and he picked the tub. Mistake #1. He had a big problem handling constructive criticism and it made everything that much more difficult. Tip: If you plan on replacing the tub hire someone. It is very very difficult. He did replaced the wallboard but the joints are terrible. The grout job stinks. Even as a novice I could see that.

I tiled the floor last weekend. My wife wanted it put down diagonally. I took my time and read everything I could. The tile store we purchased from offered a free tiling class so I took it. The guy was a retired pro and taught me a lot. The store is more expensive but I can't say enough about the customer service. They seem like they really care about you doing a good job. He gave me tips for the way I wanted to put it down. I cut out cardboard the size of the tiles and laid that out before I cut my tiles. I didn't trust them as templates though they just helped me know how I wanted to shape each piece. Even though he told me not I grouted along the edge of the tub. Mistake #2. Never tile along walls or the tub. They can expand and cause the grout to crack and crumble. You want to caulk there anyway. Today I chipped it all out and it wasn't fun at all. I plan on caulking it today.

I must say that I surprised myself. It really turned out well. Oh yeah, about the wall tile guy I hired? I can honestly say I kicked his patootey in the grouting department. From now on I'm the tile guy around here!
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Old 04-04-2009, 12:37 PM   #8
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DIY tiling first time?


Prep work is critical to the job. You have tiles loose at the bottom. This could mean water issues. Either from the floor wicking up or from the plumbing fixtures down.
You realize the phrase, " I'm retiling the bathroom", means; I'm gutting the bath, I'm redoing the plumbing in the bath, I'm installing the proper wall material in the different parts of the bath. Etc, etc....
Tiling is just one of the last laps.
Ron
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Old 04-04-2009, 01:19 PM   #9
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DIY tiling first time?


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Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
Prep work is critical to the job. You have tiles loose at the bottom. This could mean water issues. Either from the floor wicking up or from the plumbing fixtures down.
You realize the phrase, " I'm retiling the bathroom", means; I'm gutting the bath, I'm redoing the plumbing in the bath, I'm installing the proper wall material in the different parts of the bath. Etc, etc....
Tiling is just one of the last laps.
Ron
This statement is 100% true.

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