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How to Lay New Tile over the Old

How to Lay New Tile over the Old

Decision Making
Laying new tile over the old can save you from time-consuming, tiresome and messy work on tile removing. Besides, during the tear-out process you can damage the floor surface under the tile and this may require costly repairs. Sometimes, tile removing leads to undesirable reduction of floor surface level, so it makes sense to keep the old tile in order to avoid this effect.

But this method is available only in those cases, when the old tile sticks to the floor firmly and has no signs of cracking. Otherwise, it is better to drop the idea and to give preference to a traditional method of tiling. Thus, before you make the decision, check if:

  • * The old tile isn’t damaged significantly
  • * There is no risk that it can crack or scale off the floor
  • * The tile pieces are not loose (you can check this by tapping each tile piece)
  • * The room isn’t very small, it doesn’t feature low ceilings and rough walls (an additionaltile layer will reduce thespace)
  • * There are no pipes, electrical wires and other utility lines under the old tile (the new tile layer over the old will complicates the repair or replacement)
  • * There is no need to level the floor
  • * The floor level isn’t too high (the new tile layer will exceed the door sill.

If you are positive about laying your new tile over the old, then get down to business.

Preparatory Works

How to Lay New Tile over the Old

Preparatory works are the key factor for obtaining the best result, so don’t neglect the smallest details.

  • * If you found out that some tiles are cracked or loose, remove them without hesitations, since they won’t hold new tiles firmly enough.
  • * Use grout to fill in the empty spaces that are left after the tile removing, watching the grout is even with the floor level.
  • * Use a level to reveal those tiles, which are higher than others.
  • * Grind those tiles down.
  • * If the grout in the tile joints is cracked or moldy, scrape it.
  • * Remove glaze from the tile surface to improve its adhesive properties using an angle grinder or a coarse-grain abrasive paper. Also you can scratch the tile surface instead grinding the glaze completely.
  • * Remove dirt and dust using a vacuum cleaner and wash the old tile to get it clean.
  • * Let the floor dry and applyprimer adhesive.

Tiling Process
How to Lay New Tile over the Old

  • * Take an appropriate tile adhesive, for example thin-set mortar, which is often used by professionals for laying mosaic in outdoor projects. If you are going to lay glass and stone mosaic tile, you may need some specific adhesives, since stone mosaic prefers rapid hardening cement glue, while in the light of aesthetic appearance transparent glass tile needs an adhesive based on white cement.
  • * Put the right amount of adhesive on the back part of each tile, using a notched trowel to create notches for better adhesion without putting extra glue. Comb the mixture in one direction to avoid swirls.
  • * Then put the new tile on the old, pressing it firmly. Watch the level and put more or less adhesive to correct it. Use spacer lugs to create space between tile pieces.
  • * When all the new tiles are laid, leave the floor to dry. Wait at least 3 days before starting to walk on the new floor.
  • * Take tile grout and fill in the joints between tile pieces using a putty knife. Allow the grout to dry for 3 days.
  • * When the grout hardened, apply silicone grout to make the joints better sealed and protected from damages.
  • * Clean the new tile withwarm water and detergent.