Install a Slate Floor 1 - Planning and Materials

Lead Image
  • 5-30 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 500-5,000
What You'll Need
Wet saw
Tile underlayment
Tape measure
Trowel (1/2")
Knee pads
Chalk line
Sponge and bucket
Utility knife
Sanded grout
Grout float
Saber saw with a 12" blade
Paint roller/paint pad

Slate is a great option for hard surface flooring for a number of reasons. It is extremely durable and stain-resistant, and it also provides a much more secure footing than standard ceramic tile, which can become slippery when it gets wet.

Aside from durability, slate has a unique look that sets it apart from standard ceramic tiles and other man-made products. The face of a slate tile carries the natural texture that was formed when the slate broke away from the face of the rock. This gives you the opportunity to install a truly unique flooring solution. (This is Part 1 of a 3 part series. To move ahead to Part 2, click here.)

Inspect Your Materials

Before you begin any prep work, take a few minutes to inspect your flooring. Open up the crates and check the boxes for damage. Ask the company that you buy the flooring from what their policy is on broken or damaged tile. As you go through the crates, set aside any broken boxes and make sure that you get the appropriate credit from your supplier.

If you do end up having to send some boxes back, make sure that the replacements are from the same lot number. With natural products like slate, there are slight differences in hue and color that occur within the rock. You need to make sure that your replacement pieces came from the same rock, or they may stick out once you have your floor installed.