Do I need a tiler? All you need to know about tiling

Tilers are responsible for all aspects of the tile laying process in a number of different environments. These can range from domestic kitchens and bathrooms to industrial locations, such as shops, offices and hotels. Another common area of their work is in swimming pool construction. Some tilers will specialise in certain areas, such as marble fixing, restoration, or underwater tile repair. Others will specialise in mosaic tiles, thus their work contains an artistic element in the laying process.

When would I need a tiler?

A tiler is needed whenever you require tiles to be laid. Virtually all tilers work on both walls and floors, and they are able to work with a variety of materials, from ceramics to slate. If the job is only a small one then just a single tiler is needed. However with larger projects, for example tiling industrial premises and laying swimming pool tiles, a group of tilers will be needed.

The tile laying process

Tilers have to be able to perform all parts in the tile laying process, thus their training is often long and extensive.
  • Initially they have to measure the area so that they can calculate how many tiles and how much adhesive will be needed. It is essential that this is accurate as any mistakes made here would cost the tiler.
  • Next all the tiles need to be cut to the correct size and shape. Hand tools or machinery will be used depending on the size and width of the tiles, and the tiler will do this himself or herself. Again it is vital that this is done correctly so that no loss is incurred.
  • The tiler will then lay the tiles out in the designated areas to check that all calculations and cuttings have been done correctly, and that the tiles fit in place.
  • If the area which is to be tiled needs any restoration work then the tiler will remove or repair any surface before the rest of the process is performed.
  • An adhesive (this may be ready-mixed or the tiler may make it himself or herself using sand and cement) is then used to level out the surface, and will also fix the tiles in place.
  • When this has partly dried the tiler will then carefully and precisely lay the tiles onto the adhesive so that they are set in place. The tiler uses plastic crosses to ensure that all the tiles are equidistance apart and to make sure that they do not move out of place while the adhesive is setting.
  • Once the adhesive is completely dry, this may take several hours, the tiler will then use a grout to fill in the spaces between the tiles. They will then wash the tiles to make sure that no adhesive or grout has left any marks, and then leave the grout to dry.