Installation of ceramic floor tile

Before you start to install tile, please be aware of the following important points:
  • Ensure you have ordered sufficient tiles from the same production batch and/or of the same work size and shade code to complete the installation; it may be difficult or impossible to obtain an exact shade match later.
  • If possible, retain a small stock of tiles for future repairs.
  • Before you start, read carton labels and information on cartons.
  • Shade variation is a natural feature of ceramic floor tiles - check for acceptability before the tile installation.
  • Make a note of batch numbers, work sizes and shade codes for future reference or in case of complaint.
  • A degree of shade variation is inherent in the manufacture of ceramic floor tiles. In addition "blends" have a deliberately varied effect.
  • In order to obtain an attractive and overall natural effect, several packs should be opened and their contents mixed before installing.
  • As members of The National Tile Assosiation ( NTCA) we wish to point out the agreed position of members of the Association regarding complaints on shading:
    In common with most products manufactured from natural materials there can be shade variations from batch to batch. Please note therefore that:
    Samples and displays may not be identical to the shade currently in stock.
    It is important to purchase sufficient tiles from one batch to complete the job as it may not be possible to obtain the same shade for subsequent orders.
    It is the responsibility of the buyer to ensure that they have an acceptable blend and to check tiles before setting as no claim can be accepted for this reason once tiles have been examined and installed.
    Tiles are carefully checked for defects prior to packing but it is possible for damage to occur in storage, transit or before installation. We do not accept any responsibility for any consequence of installing tiles with obvious defects.

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    For explicit details on the various methods of laying floor tiles and the selection, positioning and installation of movement control joints refer to NTCA Publication "Technical Specification for Ceramic Floor Tile Installation" and ASI AS 5385 Part 3: 1989 "Wall and Floor Tiling". Ceramic floor tiles may be install into sand / cement semi-dry screed, bedding mortars, standard, latex improved or rapid setting ceramic floor tile adhesives. These adhesives may be used to set tiles to fully cured sand/cement screeds or concrete surfaces. Concrete must have set and cured for 6 weeks and sand/cement screeds must have cured for 3 weeks (unless proprietary rapid setting screeds are used). The tile adhesive is generally applied at between 3/16" and 3/8" bed thickness using the solid bed method and ensuring no voids are left beneath any tile. This is achieved either by using a suitable notched trowel or by "buttering" the back of the tile. Avoid any "lipping" of adjacent tiles. The adhesive must be allowed to set thoroughly before grouting of the tile commences.
    The joints between the tiles should generally be a minimum of 1/8" wide. The joints between ceramic floor Tiles must be fully filled using either a cement-based grout (general-purpose use) or an impervious or epoxy grout (hygiene, stain resistant or waterproof uses). In exterior situations where water may penetrate standard cement based grouts, a waterproof grout should be used to prevent water penetrating of the tiling system, which could lead to ultimate failure or frost damage of the tiling system.
    Ensure the instructions of the grout manufacturer are followed Clean grout off the surface of tiles before it has had time to set. This is particularly important in the case of epoxy or resin based grouts. It may be difficult or even impossible to remove hardened grout from the face of the tile. Some colored grouts may, due to the type of pigmentation used, fill the micropores in the surface of some unglazed tiles and produce a stain on the face of the tile. This may be difficult if not impossible to remove. If using colored grouts, we strongly recommend that a trial area be grouted to check compatibility.