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mlijoi 04-19-2013 06:25 PM

Basement ceramic tile layout. Where to start?
1 Attachment(s)
Here is a rough/not to scale floo rplan of my small approx. 600 sq.ft basement.
I plan on installing 12x12" ceramic myself. I have some experience on tile installation, but my biggest question is where do I start to get the best looking and straightest installation? I know that I need a straight chalk line for a reference but how many to use and where to snap it/them??

Thanks to all!!!!!!!!!

wkearney99 04-20-2013 09:25 AM

Where's the stairs? Generally you want to try to start a layout so there won't be awkward little cuts in places that draw your attention. That and you can use a threshold in the doorways to break up the field and allow a more suitable one in the smaller rooms. It would be difficult to lay out the whole family room space in a way that also worked in the bath and laundry.

One tip, there's a free drawing program called 'Sketchup' that's very handy for modeling stuff like this.

Along with a video demonstrating one way to use it:

mlijoi 04-20-2013 10:01 AM

Thanks for the reply. I was under the impression that a chalk like should be snapped along the longest run and another line snapped 90 degrees to that one and lay out from the first tile being inside the 90 degree angle?

wkearney99 04-20-2013 10:14 AM

The lines get snapped where ever the pattern works best. That's why I suggested the youtube link. The second one in the series shows how you can turn the tiles to look at how they might work on an angle.

What you want to avoid are tiny pieces in places where they'd look stupid. Like putting a sliver right along a line where you'd be annoyed to notice it every time.

cleveman 04-20-2013 09:57 PM

You have a long line along the bottom side of the hallway and the left side of the living room.

Hopefully you are fairly square.

You want to lay it out as others mentioned, so you don't have any slivers of tile against walls. So pull a line across the hallway and lay it out so that it works with no small cuts against a wall. If the walls are uneven and you have a 10" cut against the wall, then it is OK. If the walls goes out 1/2", then you have a 10 1/2" cut.

Then you want to lay out the living room the same. Once you think you are good, then see how you flow into the other rooms.

The laying of the tile is the easiest part. The preparation of the floor, the layout, the clean-up after laying are the tough parts.

Sometimes it is difficult to layout your tile. As stupid as it seems, you need to just lay out a row of tile with spacers on the floor and measure them up. There is a lot of tile out there designed to be laid with 1/4" spacing. If you are not using 1/4" spacing, rather 1/8" or 3/16", then you can't figure in 12" increments. Just put the tile on the floor and measure out and write on a piece of paper the layout for 1, 2, 3-16 tile.

You don't need to dry-lay the entire floor, but these measurements will give you an accurate reading as to how you will come out from your starting point and how you will end.

Pay attention to how you will end in a doorway. For example, if you need to cut your tile at 11-1/2" on the side of a room, then go 3/4" into a doorway, then your doorway cuts may amount to 1/2" slivers.

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