While being a homeowner can be stressful at times because of the sheer amount of maintenance involved, it can also be an incredibly rewarding experience. The home you own may not be the home of your dreams in its current state, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. You can redesign, DIY, and remodel to your heart’s content.
Is the bathroom next up on your list of DIY projects? Does your shower desperately need an upgrade? Do you want to feel like you live in a fancy hotel?
If you’ve made the decision to remodel your bathroom yourself, congratulations. Once you’ve found a tile design and made the choice between porcelain or ceramic, all you need to know is how to install the tile.
Read on for our quick guide on how to install shower tile or Deck Ceramico. Your dream shower is waiting!
1. Prepare and Strip the Space
After removing the old tile, you’ll want to prepare your shower area.
You’re going to need to strip the shower space to studs. Everything except the shower pan will need to go, so keep that in place if you can. It will make the project a lot less difficult if you don’t have to install or build one yourself.
2. Install a Cement Backer Board
Installing cement backer board prior to tiling provides a moisture barrier so that you don’t introduce things like mold, mildew, and rot in your bathroom.
To install shower tile, you’ll want to start with the applying a mortar to the surface of the cement backer board, and then press the boards into it. Once the cement boards have been pressed into the mortar, you can screw them in.
3. Start at the Bottom
Lay the porcelain or ceramic tiles out on the wall. Doing this will give you an idea of how the finished shower will look, and you’ll see where you might need to cut the tile and make other adjustments.
Then, use a level and mark your first row of tiles (the bottom row) with a pencil. Be sure to overlap the tile and the backer board by half of an inch.
4. Mortar the Row You’re Starting With
If you’re starting with the bottom row, you’ll want to apply the mortar there. Lay a coat of thin-set mortar down. Then, press the bottom row of tiles in with a firm hand. If you’re doing it correctly, the tile should hold on its own.
Now, you need to let the tile set. Since you’re building the rest of the shower off of this bottom row, giving it time to set is crucial. Setting for half a day is ideal.
5. Invest in Tile Spacers
They’ll make the rest of the shower tiling process a whole lot easier. Instead of eyeing it on your own (and ending up with a subpar looking shower as a result), you’ll have perfectly spaced tiles which are aesthetically pleasing to look at. And that’s the end result, isn’t it?
All you need to do now is install each of the upper rows, continuing all the way to to the top of the shower.
Once you get to the top, you’ll need to measure and cut the top row to size. You can do this with a snap cutter or a tile saw. Don’t cut any tiles you don’t need to – and ensure that edge tiles are all even in size – and you’ll be perfectly pleased with the finished, tiled product.
6. Allow the Tile to Set
This step is essential. If you don’t let the tile set for enough time, it won’t stay in place. Fancy having to install shower tile a second time? We didn’t think so. Give the tile a full 48 hours to set, and then you can move on to the next step: grout.
7. Grout, Grout, Grout
Now that the tile has set in place, it’s time to add grout. There are many different colors of grout, and you can choose whatever you like, but picking a color that compliments the tile used in your shower is best.
Press wet grout into the openings, or seams, between the tile using a rubber float. Continue pressing grout into each seam until all have been filled. Wipe excess grout from the tiles as you go.
After all of the seams have been filled, you can smooth everything out using a wet sponge. Follow the seams and be careful not to apply too much pressure, or you may end up removing some of the grout. Repeat this process until all of the excess grout is removed and all of the tile seams are smooth.
8. Got Haze? Get Rid of It.
Grout haze is the residue that’s left over on the surface of the tiles after grouting has been completed. If you’re noticing that there’s residue, you may want to look into a haze cleaner. This can be purchased at your local home improvement store.
9. Seal the Seams
If all haze appears to be clear, it’s time to seal the seams with grout sealer. Sealing is critical because it keeps water out from behind the tile, meaning your hard work will remain intact for years to come. If you fail to seal the seams, however, you risk destroying your handiwork.
Install Shower Tile with Ease
With this quick guide, it’ll be easy as pie to install shower tile in your bathroom. After you’ve decided on the tile design you want to use, purchased either porcelain or ceramic tiles, and rounded up all of the other tools and equipment you’ll need, getting the job done is simple. All it takes to create your dream shower is just a few days’ worth of work.
If you ask us, that’s a pretty fair tradeoff, isn’t it?