Wall Tiling Basics

Wall tiling is simple, though there are a few things you should know as you plan this type of project. Depending on whether the wall is good and even or uneven, you may choose to use smaller or larger tiles in different materials. Smaller tiles will be good for uneven walls, although they may take a longer time to fit. The walls need to be flat for the larger tile fit. You can have the wall tested to see how flat it is, or use a flat board or even a yard stick. If there are large gaps below the board or yard stick, then they will need to be filled.

Shower Wall Tiling

Larger tiles are recommended for walls in the shower area. Larger tiles give you less area for grout and dirt. Larger tiles are also recommended since it will minimize the amount of water that gets into the material of the wall. The less dirt and grout buildup, the less often and less vigorously you will have to scrub the shower wall tiles to keep them clean. 

Laying Out the Wall Tiles

When laying out the wall tiles, it is best to start from the wall’s center. Mark a line in the center of the wall with a pencil. Then lay each tile side by side, working from the center to the edge. This creates a center point to work with horizontally. Vertically, do the same, working from the center up and down. Make sure that when working from the center points created, there is a decent sized tile at the edges of the walls as well. 

Using Wall Tile Adhesives

When sticking wall tiles, consider using a powdered adhesive, which works for about 30 minutes once mixed. (After that time has passed, you will have to use a new batch.)

Although cheap adhesives are better economically, it is not advised to use cheap grout and adhesive in one. The adhesive will need to be suitable for the type of wall tile. If the wall tile is ceramic, the adhesive needs to be suitable for ceramic tiles. Some tiles, like porcelain, will not absorb much water like ceramic tiles. If you use an adhesive not specifically designed for the tiles you have, they may slide down from the wall when you try to stick them. Always read and follow all adhesive instructions.

Wall Primers

Check the adhesive instructions to see if it advises use of a particular wall primer. If the tiles are around the shower and bath, then you should use a water-resistant plaster board. For small tiles, use tanking product and a plasterboard. A tanking product prevents water from damaging walls that may go through the grout. Tanking products are a paint-like waterproof substance.

Wall Tile Cutters

If tiles need to be cut, it will be quicker and easier to use a tile cutter. An angle grinder with a diamond blade will help to cut shapes in tiles. It gives a good edge and is quick. The tile cutter allows you to cut the back and front faces of tiles.