How to Apply Floor Tiles to Walls

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Decorating trends come and go, this is one that you may find of real interest! Many people don't know that floor tiles can be applied to walls, which has become an increasingly popular trend in bathroom remodeling. Adding any type of tile, whether it be ceramic, porcelain or slate, is a sure way to add value to your home while updating its decor. Done properly and depending on size, applying floor tiles to the wall can take a portion of a few afternoons.

Things You'll Need

  • Tile Plastic spacers Notched trowel Thin-set mortar Grout Rubber float Sponge Waterproof caulking Soft cloth
  • Clean your walls of any debris and mark the middle of your wall near the bottom of your working area. Do a "dry run" with your desired tiles, working outward from the middle, to get an idea of how the tiles will fit and how much the tiles on each end will need to be cut to ensure a symmetrical feel.

  • Mix up a batch of thin-set mortar. With a notched trowel, spread a small amount of thin-set onto the wall. Use only enough for a few tiles, as thin-set can dry quickly and become brittle. Add plastic spacers to each side of your tiles.

  • Add more thin-set, tiles and spacers until your first row, whether it be on top of the floor or above a tub enclosure, is complete. Tiles on the end may need to be cut with a tile cutter, which can be rented from your local hardware store. Allow 24 hours for the tiles to adhere to the thin-set.

  • Finish applying thin-set, tiles and spacers to the wall until your desired working area has been covered. Allow another 24 hours for the remaining tiles to set.

  • Remove the plastic spacers, and mix a batch of grout according to the manufacturer's instructions. Spread the grout over the tiles with a rubber float, working the grout in between the gutters between each and every tile. Wipe away excess grout with a damp sponge. Allow the area to sit overnight for the grout to harden.

  • Buff off any haze that remains on the tiles with a soft cloth. Rub in a circular motion.

  • Apply waterproof caulking to the edges and corners of your working area, especially if the tiles have been applied in a bathroom or kitchen. This prevents moisture from seeping in between the tiles and the wall and causing damage to the thin-set.

Tips & Warnings

  • Protect the floor, counters or bathtub of your working area with drop cloths. Thin-set, dropped tiles, and grout can damage unprotected surfaces.

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