How Do I Install a 12-by-24-inch Porcelain Tile?

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Special techniques are needed to install large tiles vertically.
Special techniques are needed to install large tiles vertically. (Image: tile installation image by Greg Pickens from Fotolia.com)

Porcelain tiles are a hard and durable alternative to ceramic tiles. While porcelain tiles can come in a variety of sizes, 12-by-24-inch porcelain tiles will give you a different look than 12-by-12 or 24-by-24-inch tiles. With a rectangular type of tile you can create many different patterns for your floor. DIY homeowners can install a porcelain tile floor themselves when they know how to get started.

Things You'll Need

  • 12-by-24-inch porcelain tiles
  • Tile spacers
  • Epoxy mortar
  • Notched trowel
  • Diamond blade wet saw
  • Epoxy grout
  • Grout float
  • Grout sponge

Check the subfloor to make sure it is suitable for a tile installation. The floor needs to be clean, flat and sturdy. Porcelain tiles can be installed over a variety of flooring types if they are in good condition.

Lay the 12-by-24-inch tiles on the floor and decide on a layout. Tiles like this can be laid in a brick, herringbone or row pattern. Lay out the tiles on the floor with tile spacers. Arrange the tiles until you come up with an appropriate layout. Mark the floor with a pencil so you know where to start laying the tiles on the floor.

Apply the epoxy mortar to the floor. Use a notched trowel to spread the mortar on the floor. Press the tiles into the mortar and place a tile spacer between each of them. Cut the tiles with a diamond blade wet saw. The diamond blade will help you to get a clean and accurate cut on the porcelain tile without chipping or breaking the tile. Wait for the mortar to dry overnight before walking on the floor.

Grout the porcelain tiles with epoxy grout. Mix the epoxy grout per manufacturer directions, then spread it with a grout float. Use the grout float to squeeze the grout directly into the tile joints. Remove as much excess grout as possible with the grout float. Do this by running the float diagonally over the tiles at a 45-degree angle. Wipe away the grout from the top of the porcelain tiles with a grout sponge. Allow the grout to dry overnight, or per manufacturer directions.

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