How to Install Mesh Backed Tile

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Mesh-backed tile is a lot easier to install than individual tiles. This innovative building product is perfect for a weekend remodeling project for any homeowner. As with all tile installations, a concrete backer board should be installed prior to tile installation. Concrete backer board is installed to cover the entire area to be tiled. This firm, porous material will improve the adhesion of the tile glue and provide a stable surface to prevent tiles from loosening over time.

Things You'll Need

  • Mesh-backed tile Trowel with V-notch and straight edge Latex modified thin set adhesive Grout Hard rubber grout float Large sponge

Instructions

  1. Use the V-notched edge of the trowel to spread an even coating of adhesive to the wall. Be sure to cover enough of the surface for each section of mesh-backed tile. Apply adhesive to each section individually to prevent the adhesive from drying, which will reduce the adherence of the mesh-backed tile.

  2. Gently rub the adhesive with the straight edge of the trowel to level it uniformly on the wall.

  3. Use the straight edge of the trowel to apply a thin layer of adhesive to one section of the mesh-backed tile. Apply adhesive to each section individually to prevent the adhesive from drying and reducing the adherence of the tile.

  4. Start from one edge, and slowly press the mesh-backed tile into the adhesive. Use the hard rubber grout float to press and level the tile to the wall.

  5. Repeat the previous two steps until the entire area to be tiled is complete.

  6. After the tile has set up for 24 to 48 hours, mix the grout according to the package directions.

  7. Use the hard rubber float to work the grout in between the tiles.

  8. Use warm water and a sponge to remove the grout from the tiles. If a large area has been tiled, apply grout in sections to prevent the grout from drying on the face of the tiles.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use the same color adhesive as the grout. If the adhesive pushes too far into the area to be grouted, there will not be a visible difference when the job is complete.
  • Wear gloves and be sure to wash all exposed skin thoroughly after handling adhesive and grout. Read all warnings on adhesive and grout, and handle according to package directions.
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