The finishing touch: how to tile around your bathtub

The Finishing Touch: How to Tile Around Your Bathtub

Tiling around your bathtub is a fairly straightforward procedure that most homeowners can pull off with just a little learning and patience. Tiles are a good choice for the bathroom, as they are easy to keep clean in what is essentially a very damp atmosphere. Tiles for around a bath may be ceramic, glass or stone. The choice is up to you and depends on things such as the look you are going for and what fits with the d?cor of the rest of the room.

Getting Started

To get started, you’ll need to make sure you lay all the tiles out very precisely. This is an important step because this is a labor-intensive job when it comes to measuring and cutting. You might also want to consider using mastic instead of thinset for this job. Mastic is much stickier than thinset and will prevent the tiles from slipping down the wall or otherwise out of place.

You will then need to measure the height of each wall that is located above the tub. By dividing this number in half, you can find the halfway point on the wall. Then, measure how many tiles above and below this line will fit. If you end up with less than half a tile at the top and bottom, adjust the center mark to give yourself more space to work with. A small sliver will look odd and may not cut straight or stay stuck.

Laying the Tile

Once you have your tile layout all planned out, start tiling at the center mark and work outwards. Mastic will last about twenty minutes once it is laid on, so don’t lay too much at once. Don’t forget to make the deep ridges with the trowel to help the mastic spread out and adhere to the tiles correctly. In addition, you should use tile spacers to ensure the tiles are laid evenly and that there aren’t any vast expanses of grout. You will also need to leave space between the bottom row and the tub for caulk.

Some tiles will need to be cut to fit edges, or around faucets. Remember the rule: measure twice, cut once. Having a few extra tiles that you need is also useful in case of breakages.

Finishing the Job

Grouting is the last thing you will have to do in order to fill in the gaps between the tiles and hold them fast. Push the grout gently into the gaps and wipe off any excess grout with a damp sponge. A final buff can be done the following day after it has all had a good chance to dry.

If you are not feeling too confident about embarking upon the project on your own, taking a course in tiling may be just what you need, as a course will teach you all the skills you need to make your home improvements look professional.

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