Home Improvement

How To Tile and Grout Like a Pro

Chris and I have been learning how to do everything ourselves while finishing our basement, which has been a HUGE learning curve. It has been difficult at times, but very nice on our wallets.

It really does pay to do it yourself!

One of our latest ventures has been tiling. We had leftover tile from our kitchen for the bathroom floor, and wanted to put it to good use. Chris and I also wanted to make our bathroom really have something special that isn’t seen in many bathrooms, so we decided to tile an entire wall! I had seen it done on HGTV, and fell in love with the look of it.

The first thing you’ll need to begin your tiling is Durock. You’ll need to measure out what you need, and screw it into the wall, or use Liquid Nails to adhere it to the floor. We left the Durock to dry on the floor for two days.

Next, we used VersaBond Gray 50 lb. Fortified Thin-Set Mortar with a square notched trowel to spread the thin-set across the floor. Don’t get too ahead of yourself – – only spread a bit at a time. 

We set our tiles down atop of the thin-set, separated by tile spacers.

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To cut our tiles, we used my dad’s tile saw. He uses a DEWALT 10 in. Wet Tile Saw with Stand. Chris had to use it during a blizzard!

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The steps for tiling our wall were a little bit different than the floor. Instead of using thin-set mortar, we used AcrylPro 1 Gal. Ceramic Tile Adhesive to keep the tiles from sliding. It’s much thicker, so it allowed for the tiles not to fall!

We also wanted a thinner grout line, so we turned our spacers sideways – the same ones we used for the floor.

We began by tiling above the vanity and up and around the window, screwing in a board to keep them from sliding down the bottom. The next day, we tiled from the middle down to the floor.

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We decided NOT to tile underneath our mirror, so as not to waste any tiles (they’re expensive!). 

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Grouting is actually pretty easy! You’ll need to choose your grout color, and decide on either pre-mixed or not. Follow the package directions to mix your grout! All it takes is water.

You’ll need a bucket of warm water and a big sponge (this Kraft Tools Grout Scrubber Sponge is the best), plus a rubber grout float.

First things first – remove your spacers!

Next, you’ll take your rubber float and scoop grout out of either the container or mixing bucket. You’ll smooth the grout into the spaces, making sure to not have any bubbles or gaps.

Using the bucket of water and sponge, you’ll wipe off the excess grout and clean it all up. You’ll definitely have extra grout on your tiles! The film from the grout takes lots of wiping to remove, so just be aware that it won’t come clean on the first wiping with your sponge!

You’ll continue along your space with your grout, following the same steps above! It takes time, but is fairly easy.

The hardest part for me was grouting around the window! I had to use my finger to keep the grout from falling all over the place, which was kind of a pain. However, it turned out so beautifully!

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If you love our floor tile, it’s Marazzi Montagna Rustic Bay from Home Depot!

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Even if you don’t know how to do a project, it’s worth it to learn and try it out for yourself!

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