Natural stone tiles will not be the best material to make use of and maintain for walls and flooring, but they are certainly one of the crucial rewarding both when it comes to quality, and likewise return on investment since it’s widely believed that a natural stone wall or floor will increase the worth of your property. In addition to these benefits, natural stone tiles also are extremely hard wearing, and generally, with some care and a focus, will last as long because the house does.
As already mentioned, there is perhaps more work involved both in fitting and maintaining natural stole tiles, than there is in some alternatives resembling wood flooring. One reason for it’s because stone is a very strong material that is harder to chop than a wood board, or perhaps a ceramic tile, which can be scored and snapped. Along with this, you may have to prepare the surface of the sub-floor upon which your tiles will likely be laid whether it is uneven or cracked. This can be done normally with a very good quality self-levelling compound, available from all respectable tile and flooring specialists.
When preparing natural stone tiles for laying, be sure to spend time inspecting them both for chips and surface scratches. Typically, natural stone tiles will arrive with a light wax coating to guard them from potential damage in transit. Don’t worry an excessive amount of about cleaning the tiles before you lay them it will have to be done after they’ve been laid and grouted anyway. Attempt to work out of several packs of tiles when laying, that can assist you achieve a truly random and harmonious aesthetic.
On the subject of cutting natural stone tiles, the perfect solution to do this is with an electric tile wet cutter. Along with stone tiles being quite thick and strong, they are also a natural material and can therefore by nature have veins and faults in it, making it unsuitable to be cut using a manual tile cutter, which would be more likely to shatter the tile as opposed to snap it. Be aware that wet cutting may be messy and create significant amounts of dust and debris; therefore attempt to either perform the cutting outdoors, or in a safe environment. Always take care to wear hand and eye protection as well as suitable clothing, and remove and power sockets or electrical equipment that’s prone to get wet in the method.
When marking a cut line on a natural stone tile, chances are you’ll prefer to make use of a crayon as oppoed to a pencil which is prone to not make a big mark on the tile. Take care to go extra slow when reaching the top of your cut, as in the event you go too fast and force the tile through it is likely to interrupt rendering it difficult to make use of. If you are cutting a very large tile, try to get someone that can assist you steady the tile as you cut, since the burden of either piece of tile can start to tug the entire piece apart encouraging a snap – as you advance through the tile.
Laying your natural stone tiles is a comparatively simple process involving the usage of tile adhesive to repair the tiles to the surface. Some types of particularly porous tile corresponding to travertine require ‘back-buttering’ with tile adhesive before they’re laid. This is also important in case your tiles have any cracks within the underside, since ‘buttering’ will help to seal the crack and add strength, and the method is taken into account good practise in any situation. Take care when laying natural stone tiles, as they are often quite heavy. Take care to minimise unnecessary stretching to reduce the danger of back-strain. You need to use a spirit level to assist check your tile is level before moving onto the subsequent one, and a gentle tap from a small mallet might help to encourage any corners which are too high.
Grouting your natural stone tiles after they’ve been laid is again, a fairly simple process. Do use a mask when mixing your tile grout because it could be a considerably dusty process. Always mix your grout powder with clean, cold water, and if you are laying your tiles in a bathroom or kitchen, you want to make use of a tile grout that features anti-bacterial agents to reduce the growth of mould and mildew. Using the edge of a trowel, generously fill within the gaps between your tiles (created through the use of spacers) and smooth it over the surface at a 45 degree angle to the floor. A grout profiling tool will help after you’ve applied the grout to smooth the fill off, and take away any unwanted excess.
Caring in your natural stone tiles, it an important to remember, and before you finish your tiling job, you could seal the tiles, to stop the stone from becoming stained. This seal must be applied after tiles have been cleaned, and any residual dust, adhesive or grout has been removed with a residual remover. After applying and removing the residual remover, a seal can then be added to assist prevent materials and liquids from entering the pores of the stone and leaving potential marks. This seal needs to be regularly maintained in order to keep the tiles in good condition, and can even be added to through using enhancing products to bring out the natural grain and contrasts of the stone.
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