Month: February 2020

Preparing walls for tiling

As you get ready to tackle that tiling job, it is worth spending time to make sure the surface is
perfectly prepared. Some care and attention now could avoid the inconvenience and
embarrassment of being called back later on.


Some simple checks.

  • Check for signs of wall hangings, old hooks, screws or nails. Remove these as carefully as possible without damaging the wall surface.
  • Remove all loose plaster. Don’t be tempted to leave anything that is remotely flaking. Tapping the wall will produce an echo if the plaster is coming away from the wall.
  • Check the wall for upright and how flat it is with a straight edge.
  • Double check dimensions to see if the walls and floor are square.
  • Use a spirit level to establish the starting level at the floor.

Levelling the wall.

Remember that rendered brickwork is unlikely to be flat and level. Cracks can be filled, use two
layers for deep fills. If there are only a few cracks and imperfections, then simply repairing these
areas should be sufficient. Once all the layers of filler are dry, it is worth sanding down any excess to
completely flatten the wall.


Lumps and dents of a few millimetres should be absorbed into the layer of adhesive, but it is still
better to try and fill or sand them. Adhesive depth is crucial. Too thick and the weight of the tile
could pull away from the wall over time. Too thin and the bond might not be strong enough. As
we’ve said, some time and careful attention could save a lot of trouble in the future.
Patches where loose plaster have been knocked off could be skimmed with a one-coat style filler or
plaster and then sanded down once they are dry.

Old painted surfaces can also be tiled if the paint is sound and secure along with appropriate
primers, such as SBR.

Preparing new surfaces.
If a wall is freshly skimmed, then it should really be left for 2-3 weeks or so to ensure it has
completely dried out then primed with SBR and tiled. As discussed in one of our previous blog posts,
it is possible to tile over existing tiles however there are restrictions to this such as weight ratios,
how well the original tiles are fixed and the surface condition below the tiles, these should all be
taken into account.  New plasterboard can also be directly tiled onto, just SBR primer and then tiled.
With plasterboard, it is important not to overload the wall, always check the weight limits of the
board with your supplier. In bathrooms, an aqua board or cement board will avoid the wall swelling
over type due to the humidity in the room and has a much heavier load capacity.

Surfaces to avoid.
Try to avoid tiling directly onto heavy stonework, Brick or blocks, untreated timber, particle boards,
MDF or engineered wooden flooring and laminates. It is always preferable to either batten off the
wall and board it or render and plaster to create a perfectly flat surface for your tiles.
For all of the skills listed here, in fact for all of your tiling skills get in touch and sign up to one of our
courses. From beginners to old hands wanting a refresher, we’ve got courses for everyone.

Focus on A Career in Tiling

February 2020 sees the launch of the National Apprenticeship Week with businesses and employers, schools and colleges offering a huge and varied selection of apprenticeships across all sectors of work. Learning, training and professional development continues throughout your working career and doesn’t just stop there, as training or learning a new skill in our spare time is just as important and enriches our lives.

We are always looking to make an improvement in our working or social lives. In the UK we are quite obsessed with DIY.  Have you ever spent time channel hopping on your TV and observed that there is plethora of TV programmes that are based upon improving and updating our homes, buying chateaus or apartments abroad, moving to the coast or the country, and makeovers in minutes? Well, to ‘makeover a room in minutes will require the skills of trained professionals to successfully improve a room’s style and purpose.

The National Apprenticeship Week is a great event for focusing the mind to think about your future in your workplace. At UK Pro Tiling Training the training courses available will more than make it possible for a complete change of career without having to sign up for a lengthy apprenticeship or training course. If you are struggling with your work / life balance and it seems that you are working extremely hard but not getting that job satisfaction you are looking for, then it could be time for seriously considering a change of your career and becoming a trained tiler.

Self-employment will most certainly give you the control over your work/life balance as you want it to be. The training courses at UK Pro Tiling Training offer not just complete practical tiling training but will give sound and proven 5* training in starting your own business and how to run your own business. For many, it is likely to be a daunting challenge taking sole responsibility for your business. From quoting and producing estimates for a job, time management, finding good suppliers and working through the paperwork involved such invoicing, bookkeeping and the all important marketing of your business and yourself as a top class tiler. https://www.tiling-courses.co.uk/setting-up-a-tiling-business

In the UK alone around 80% of us attempt DIY projects and around 56% of us have ‘botched the job. So, given our desire to continue to improve our homes as we are encouraged on our TVs (and some of us not doing it terribly well!) UK Pro Tiling Training also have shorter courses for those of us that may have a chateau or country cottage to ‘do up’ which will cover all the basic skills required to become a competent wall and floor tiler (and not be among the 56% of ‘botchers’!).

https://www.tiling-courses.co.uk/4-day-wall-floor-tiling-course

Finally another fantastic advantage of having a skill for which you have been fully trained and being a proficient tiler; it is a transferable skill, so, if are thinking of ‘living the dream’ and moving away from the UK, maybe heading out to Europe or further afield, you will be able to continue your career, taking into consideration the administration and registration of your business in the country you choose to work.