How to Lay a Vinyl Tile
Today, vinyl tiles enjoy incredible popularity. They are widely used to tile floors in both residential and commercial properties. Due to their remarkable durability, this type of tile fits perfectly into the interior of such public places as airports, train stations, schools and hospitals.
However, vinyl tiles are equally great for renovating your house or apartment. The most popular rooms in your family such as the kitchen, living room and bathroom, will look brighter and livelier thanks to the vinyl floors.
Moreover, vinyl tiles are known for the many benefits they provide:
- vinyl floor tiles are remarkable for the tactile and visual accuracy reminding of different natural materials such as parquet, ceramics, leather trim, marble or granite lining. The variety of designs is incredibly wide;
- strength and durability allowing manufacturers to issue warranties from 10 to 35 years;
- extremely weak abrasion thanks to the introduction of mineral crumb or quartz sand;
- resistance to UV irradiation which means the original color will not change at all;
- waterproof properties which make it possible to use this material for tiling spaces with high humidity, open areas or swimming pools;
- resistance to fluctuations in humidity and temperature;
- high resistance to mechanical pressure: no cracks, chips, scratches or dents;
- affordable pricing.
All in all, a great material! Do you know how to lay vinyl tile? Here is a good instruction that will get you started.
1) PREPARING THE SURFACE
It is no secret that any beautiful tile floor was made possible by a thorough prep work. Laying vinyl tiles is no exception and the question of how to lay a vinyl tile is the most important to start with.
If you are using a self-adhesive vinyl tile, you should start by allowing the tiles to sit in the room where it will be installed for a day. Do not remove the packaging, though. The adhesive base of the tiles should be protected from dust and dirt so it actually can stick to the wall later on.
The surface for the vinyl tile must be smooth, holistic and static. Remove any traces of grease, paint, wallpaper and oil. Also, fix the cracks and joints.
If you want to lay vinyl tiles over the warm floors, switch off the heating at least three days before the tiling work and keep the system switched off for another six days after tiling is done.
2) MARK UP YOUR SPACE
Another important question is how to lay a vinyl tile in a bathroom or other room correctly from a centering standpoint. What is the best place to start? Which direction should you take?
Find the center of the room. All measurements should be done starting with this place. Internal walls might not have strictly 90-degree angles and following wrong lines can ruin the tiling work. Move from the center to the walls. Experienced contractors recommend to lay out vinyl tile on the floor as it is first, without the adhesive, to determine the starting point for the installation.
3) HOW TO LAY VINYL TILE: CHOOSING AND APPLYING THE ADHESIVE
To lay the vinyl tile, you need to buy an acrylic dispersion adhesive. It should be noted that the adhesives intended for vinyl flooring have a waiting time of about 5-10 minutes. Therefore, you cannot start laying the tiles immediately but have to wait till the adhesive gets mature.
You can find all the necessary information on the packaging of the adhesive. A good rule of thumb is to carefully read the instructions before actually applying the adhesive. Follow the recommendations of manufacturers as this will help you ensure that your tiles will serve you for many years ahead.
4) HOW TO LAY A VINYL FLOOR TILE THE RIGHT WAY
Vinyl tiles can be cut with a utility knife but since the blades can quickly get out of order, it is recommended that you have a few spare ones nearby.
The process of cutting vinyl tiles is simple: first, cut the top layer of the tile. The material will break along the cut line and can be then cut from the back side.
When laying vinyl tiles, you should get rid of any bubbles. The adhesive should be applied evenly, without leaving any bumps or missing some areas.
To ensure that the adhesive is applied evenly and in the exact amount you need, it is recommended to use a notched trowel.
Having laid the vinyl tile, roll it over with a finishing trowel or rub it with a cork board. This is done to make sure the tiles are properly attached as well as to remove the bubbles. Excess adhesive that might protrude should be removed with a damp sponge or a sponge soaked in an alcohol-containing composition before the adhesive begins to dry out. In half an hour, roll over the area with a finishing trowel once more.
Vinyl tiles do not require any special edge treatment. The exception is made for particularly wet rooms, in which case cold welding should be used.
5) MAINTAINING VINYL TILES
Despite the fact that vinyl tiles are a long-lasting and durable material, there are some cleaning rules you should follow. In order to prevent sand and dirt in the room, it is recommended to lay the mats near the entrances. They will take in some part of the garbage and the tiles will keep their brand new looks longer.
It is recommended to wash vinyl tiles with detergents that have a neutral composition. Avoid detergents that contain bleach and ammonia. The best option is to go for a special solution for vinyl flooring. After wet cleaning, remember to wipe the floor with a dry cloth. In extreme cases, if the surface is very dirty, you might want to use a polishing machine.
There you go – helpful field advice on how to lay vinyl tiles in any room.