How to make retiling the bathroom last a lifetime
Too often do DIY bathroom jobs go awry, and really it’s a shame because there are simple steps you can take to ensure it lasts a lifetime. People rush the job, try to get it done too quickly or take shortcuts on attention to detail. Tiling can last for up to 50 years – when it is done well, but you need to follow some simple rules of thumb. Here’s our advice on how your next bathroom DIY can last a lifetime…
Choose the right tiles (size, design) grout accommodating
There are multiple things to consider when it comes to initially choosing your bathroom tiles. The obvious one is design – what does it look like? What does it feel like? How big are the sections? Well, there’s some practical advice required here. Consider the drainage capacity of the tile. For example, pebble tiles have a much slower drain time and require a greater pitch – does this fit in your plans? Secondly, choose tile colours that accentuate or work in aesthetically with the rest of the bathroom, including the fixtures. Thirdly, when ordering your tiles, consider the grout when it comes to sizing. A 30cm x 60xm tile take up 30.5cm x 60.5cm when you include grout and across a bathroom, this can make a big difference.
Clean & Prepare
Cleaning and preparing the surface for tiling takes time and care – but if you invest the hours into this stage, the job will be guaranteed to last. Different surfaces require different approaches. Concrete needs to be cured for a minimum of 28 days if you’re laying tiles over it and steel troweled concrete must be mechanically roughened and cleaned so the tiles adhere. Timber floors need to be treated and dried prior to tiling and plasterboard needs to be waterproofed liberally. Once the actual surface is prepared, use a primer from your hardware store (a specialist will give you a recommendation based on the surface) to maximize adhesion.
Lay them the right way
When getting ready to lay the tiles, it can be beneficial to plan out where they will be laid prior to waterproofing. This means you have a guide helping you when you actually go to lay them. Work from the ceiling down as this is easier to adjust, the eye is less likely to catch a short tile at the bottom of the wall than it is to catch one at the top of the wall. Draw up the guide using pencil or pen and you won’t encounter any hiccups when actually laying the tile.
You need to thoroughly waterproof the surface to get longevity out of our tiled area. After priming, run a silicon around all of the joins and corners and press into place with your finger. Use a waterproofing agent on a foam roller to waterproof the rest of the areas and allow to dry. If instructed, apply two or three coats.
So remember, be diligent, patient and spare no detail – you’ll be loving your new bathroom in no time!