How to Lay Slate Tile

Learning how to lay slate tile the right way can make doing the job much easier. Slate tile is a popular choice as flooring for many reasons, including its attractiveness as well as its durability. At the same time, slate tile can be difficult to work with. It is fragile, and if it is not handled the right, way it can easily break. You should not attempt to lay slate tile unless you are an experienced do-it-yourselfer. Here are some tips to help you learn how to lay slate tile.

The simplest way to lay slate tile is with a do it yourself kit that you can purchase at a home improvement store. Similar to some laminate hardwood flooring, this kit comes with squares of slate that snap into place. You can interlock them, creating a pattern across your floor. The nice part about using a do it yourself kit is that it will come with directions, so even if you aren't 100% comfortable with installing a floor yourself, you will have a little guidance. Whichever method you choose to use, make sure that you buy a little extra tile in case of an error.

Before you start laying down your new slate tile, you will have to remove any old flooring that you have. In addition to removing old flooring, make sure that you prepare the floor underneath for the slate tile. Make sure that the floor is dry and relatively smooth. If need be, level the floor underneath to ensure that you are starting with a flat surface.

You will want to start laying the tile in a spot that the eye is often drawn to. This is often the center of the room. Begin with the thickets piece of slate tile. The idea is that you want all of the tile to be level, so starting with the thickest piece of slate tile will allow you to build up smaller pieces with adhesive. Do a test run to ensure that you will be happy with where you are laying the tile.

Your next step is to adhere the tile to the floor. You can use either a slate floor tile adhesive or else you can mix a latex-Portland cement mortar with acrylic. Use a trowel to spread the mortar or adhesive over the floor and press the tile down.

Let the adhesive dry for at least 24 hours before you grout. Make sure you don't let grout sit on the slate tile; wipe it off immediately.

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