Do's and Don'ts when Laying Ceramic Tile

  • Beginner

Installing ceramic tile is a job that many people can do themselves. However, when you are taking on this project, there are certain things that you will want to keep in mind. Here are some of the do's and don'ts when it comes to laying ceramic tile.


One thing that you will want to make sure that you do when you are about to lay ceramic tile is to purchase extra material. Many people make the mistake of purchasing the exact square footage of the room in which they are going to install the tile. When you install ceramic tile, you need to purchase at least an extra five percent and most likely an extra 10 percent. This is going to ensure that you have enough to cover the cuts and waste. It can be very hard to find an exact match later on if you run out of tile.

When you are laying ceramic tile, you want to make sure that you use tile spacers throughout the entire project. Some people get in a hurry and think that they can do the job without tile spacers. They lay the job by hand and then when the job is done, it looks very bad. Resist the temptation to lay the job freehand and use tile spacers. It will make a large difference in the way that the job turns out.

Something else that you will want to keep in mind when laying tile is to use a wet saw. You could potentially get by with some other type of saw, but using a wet saw is going to give you cleaner cuts. This will provide you with a job that looks much more professional when you are done.


Do not walk on the tile before the adhesive has thoroughly dried. Many people make the mistake of thinking that they can walk on the tile before the adhesive has dried and it will not matter. At that point, you are going to be tearing up the floor and relaying it. You need to allow at least 24 hours after laying the tile with most tile adhesives. Some adhesives are designed to dry quickly, but with most adhesives, you will need to wait a day.

You will also want to avoid starting the job on the side of a room. If you are doing a large room, you should take the proper steps to center the tile floor before getting started. This will involve using a tape measure and a chalk line. You should snap a chalk line in both directions so that you will know exactly where the center of the floor is. You will then want to start in the center of the floor and work out towards the wall. It will look much better to have smaller pieces around the outside of the wall and to have the job centered in the room.