Re-doing your bathroom and want to try a bit of DIY? Tiling your bathroom wall isn’t impossible, but it is tricky. To complete the job yourself, you’ll have to research the tricks of the trade before starting and make sure you’re well-equipped to meet the task. Doing it yourself will be much cheaper than hiring someone to do it for you, though, so it’s a skill worth learning. Here are some tiling tips:

A beginner's guide to tiling your home

1. Ensure your safety

The first thing you need to consider is the safety of yourself and others; if you only have one bathroom in your home, likely, your bathroom will likely still be in use during your tiling operation. It’s therefore imperative that any broken tiles or sharp edges are kept out of people’s reach, particularly if there are children in the vicinity who may enter the bathroom. Keeping a tidy working area will also help to reduce the risk of slips and falls.

If you’re removing existing tiles, you must wear gloves to protect your hands from any fragments that may fall off, or any tiles that have become damaged and have sharp edges. A dust mask will help to keep any dust coming from the removal out of your airways.

2. Get your tools in order

There are a few things you’ll need to collect before you start tiling, the most obvious being your tiles (more on that in a second). You’ll have to think carefully about the kind of design you want and plan how you’ll tile it; if you want a border to break up a block colour, for example, you’ll have to work out where you want the border to start and make sure it can be installed symmetrically around the whole room. Tiling grout and adhesives like Ready Mixed Tile Adhesive are another must-have, as are tile spacers, trowels, and a tile cutting tool.

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3. Buy your tiles

Working out exactly how many tiles you need can be tricky, especially if you have a number of tricky corners that need to be tiled and filled. Most packs of tiles you can buy in shops are designed to cover one square metre, so expect to buy your tiles per square metre. Measure the width and height of the area you want to tile, then multiply the results to find out how many square metres packs you’ll need. It’s worth investing in a couple of additional packs, just in case there are some tricky edges or door frames that may need to be edged with cut tiles. If it’s your first time tiling, you’ll probably need a couple of extra tiles to make up for mistakes. There are plenty of sites out there, like Better Bathrooms for example, that sell tiles in bulk at a really competitive rate.

4. Plan your start area

The logical temptation is to start tiling from a corner, but this isn’t a good idea; the wall may not be completely straight, and you may end up with a full tile at one end and a cut-off tile at the other end, which will ruin the symmetrical effect of the tiling. A better idea is to measure the wall, and start in the middle; that way, your tiles will be cut evenly at the edges, and your spacing will be symmetrical around the room.

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