With so many moving pieces, tiling is one of the most difficult types of flooring to install. Many people will agree that they desire to have a home they can feel proud of; one with little to no mistakes. Which is why if any small detail is out of place, it can be an eyesore to the owners who tried to avoid the mistake from the inception. When it comes to tile installation, there are many mistakes that can occur—some minor and others not so minor.
If you are looking to make sure your new tile flooring was properly installed with a careful hand, a good eye, and all-around high-quality craftsmanship, then you are reading the right article. Many homeowners are not sure what signs are the dead giveaways of shoddy tile installations. This is what this article seeks to achieve.
Here are a few things to look out for:
SIGNS OF A GOOD TILE INSTALL
Proper knowledge of the criteria that a good tile installation must meet is necessary, even if you’re not an interior designer yourself. This will ensure that your home meets the aesthetic that you have in mind, and that your time and money are not wasted on poor craftsmanship. You should notice the following after a high-quality tile installation is done:
- Color, pattern, and design details match those that you had discussed
- All tiles, underlayments, and subfloor units should be equally buffed and polished before grout is laid
- Tiles are centred and symmetrical according to the unique layout and features of your home
- Transitions between different materials, such as tile against drywall, tile against hardwood, or glass and granite, should be clean and seamless
- High-traffic areas are covered or blocked off temporarily as the grout settles to make sure that all the tire surfaces are flush
- If half-tiles have to be used around the perimeter of the room or in corners, the flooring team ensures that the pattern is consistent throughout the room
- If working in a shower or bathtub, the pan or drain should be flush with the floor seamlessly to ensure proper drainage
SIGNS OF A POOR TILE JOB
Poor tile installation might be a nuisance or unsightly to look at, but it can also pose some hidden dangers to yourself and your family. Uneven spacing or a failure to lay all of the tiles in a flat, flush, and even manner can result in people tripping and falling, and improper sealing can result in water damage, leaks, and mould growth, which, if unchecked, can cause significant health risks. You should be on the lookout for the following warning signs that your tile installation was shoddy.
- Obvious mistakes such as crooked lines, corners not aligned, or uneven grout line spacing
- Tiles are loose or corners have lifted upward
- Water is not draining or continues to leak
- The tile is cupping or bowing inward or outward
- Tiles are perpetually slippery or easily cracked (pertains more to a low-quality tile sample rather than the installation of those tiles)
- Tile edges are butted up against doorjambs instead of tucked underneath them
- Excessive caulking around corners or other difficult areas is usually a sign that the contractor made a mistake and is attempting to cover it up
- Sloppy tile cuts
- Check tiles for incorrect adhesive use or application by lightly tapping the tile with a finger knuckle or screwdriver handle.
- Listen to the tone of the knock compared with the surrounding tiles. A “hollow” sound is a sign of a poorly set tile.