Can You Tile Over Plywood?

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Tiles are finest on the flooring, and plywoods are often used for subflooring as a result of their sturdiness, this text discusses tiling over plywoods.

A man laying a tile over the OSB.

Sure! Plywood can be utilized as a base for tiling. Nevertheless, keep away from laying tile straight on the plywood subfloor. Use a skinny layer of plywood as an middleman.

Whereas tile will be put in over plywood, the plywood subfloor have to be at the very least three centimeters (1¾”) thick.

Specialists and native constructing authorities additionally suggest a concrete backer board for the plywood. You have to be conscious that every state may have its suggestion for the thickness of the subfloor, and you need to discover out and observe these guidelines.

As a result of a daily sheet of plywood is simply 14 inches (0.5 cm) thick, a further sheet of plywood can be required on high of the primary. I cowl all that it’s worthwhile to study laying tile on plywood, and exactly find out how to accomplish it, on this article.

Can You Tile Over Plywood?

Hexagonal tiles over a wooden floor.

Although we will use thin-set adhesive for putting the tiles straight on the concrete slab, we shouldn’t place tiles straight on the plywood flooring. Cracks within the grout strains or tiles can develop over time, no matter how agency the subfloor is. Plywood expands and contracts at a distinct price than tile.

Tiles are aesthetically pleasing and are available all kinds of kinds, shapes, and colours. However, is plywood an acceptable flooring materials for this utility? Every thing it’s worthwhile to know is as follows.

The tile must be laid on high of plywood as a rule of thumb. Nevertheless, a 1¼” or 3 cm thick cement backer board have to be put in first. Utilizing this technique ensures that your subfloor is powerful sufficient to assist tiles.

Nevertheless, the thickness of the subfloor in every jurisdiction varies. Your native constructing authority is at all times the very best supply of knowledge.

Constructing codes in California, for example, are distinct from these in Georgia. To get the best recommendation, I like to recommend contacting a tiling contractor.

Typically, plywood is a superb subfloor and is extra bouncy underfoot than concrete, which supplies it a extra nice expertise for individuals to stroll on.

With regards to putting in tiles on plywood, the method is sort of similar to that of every other kind of floor. To make sure that the tile mortar used to stick the tiles to the plywood flooring is freed from air bubbles, it’s an absolute should. Tiles could also be put in over plywood in a couple of easy steps.

Plywood Flexibility Check

After laying the plywood, carry out this easy take a look at to see if it deflects. On the plywood, place a dinner dish. A cereal bowl will do properly right here. Fill the bowl to the brim with the liquid in a separate container. 

Take a couple of steps across the bowl on the plywood earlier than returning to your seat. Vibration ought to trigger ripples within the water, nevertheless it mustn’t attain the plate.

If that is so, you’ll want to strengthen the boards with further screws. The ground joists could also be faulty if this doesn’t resolve the issue. One method to strengthening joists is to connect 2x8s or 2x10s to the underside of the joists.

What Is The Finest Methodology For Laying Tile Over Plywood?

Tiles and level bar for tile installation.

Earlier than diving into the primary part, I need to undergo the mandatory tools.

Listed here are the instruments you want:

  • Tiles 
  • Degree
  • Pencil
  • Grout
  • Cement board
  • Mortar
  • Spacer
  • A tile cutter
  • Notch trowels
  • Scraper
  • Material
  • Sponge 
  • Buckets
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Mixing paddle
  • Tape measure
  • Chalk string

The Plywood Ought to Get Wiped Down

Cleansing the plywood’s floor is an efficient place to begin. Cement board set up will go extra easily because of this. Take away any adhesive or dried plaster from the plywood’s face with a scraper. Sweep or vacuum your entire area after that.

Putting in the Cement Board Over the Plywood

Piles of Cemented boards on white background.

A cement board must be put in over plywood. Unfold out the cement board after which pound it into the plywood to finish the set up.

Make the most of the chalk string to point the place the nails must go to make them extra sturdy. For the border, a common guideline is to nail each 6 inches (15 cm) after which each 8 inches (20 cm) all through the center.

On high of the cement board, lay a bit of chalk thread to make a grid design. Each six inches across the perimeter, drive a nail into the bottom. Then, together with your chalk string, draw an 8-inch grid for the board’s central nails.

It might seem that you simply’ve used an extreme variety of nails. The one draw back to that is that your ground ought to final a superb whereas longer for those who use this technique.

Make sure the Screw Depth Is Right

Be sure you don’t go any deeper than the underside layer of plywood when screwing the highest layer down. By transferring movement from the joist to the outer a part of plywood, drilling nails again right down to the studs cancels the benefit of a double-layered ground.

Lay the Tiles Out

You’ll now want to arrange the tiles to get a way of how they’ll look when completed. A sliver of tile on the fringe of a room is undesirable typically. To start, place a line of tiles throughout the middle and verify to see if their edges line up.

In case you start at one edge and work your means inward, chances are you’ll uncover that you simply wind up with a very huge tile on the opposite facet of the room. 

So long as the ultimate tile isn’t too slim, a half-sized tile is preferable. As a result of it’s essentially the most visually interesting. With the tile cutter, trim the tiles to the right measurement, after which begin making use of the tile mortar.

Make the most of a Decoupling Membrane

Uncoupling Membrane 1/8

Using a water-resistant, uncoupling barrier between each the tile and a stage of plywood is a standard technique of enhancing the plywood basis.

Cracking happens when the mortar and subfloor bond is just too tight and doesn’t transfer. With an uncoupling membrane, the bond between the tile mortar and plywood will be launched, letting every floor transfer independently. It additionally prevents moisture from penetrating surfaces under the tiles.

Utilizing Tile Mortar For Bonding

SimpleSet Pre-Mixed Thin-Set Mortar 1 QT

The cement board is held in place by the tile mortar. One of the vital vital issues is to make sure that the again of the tile is totally lined in mortar. When laying the tile mortar, a exact method have to be used.

Apply a thick coating of tile mortar that’s roughly ⅓ of an inch thick. Groove the tile mortar together with your notched trowel. You should use grooves which can be ⅓ of an inch or 7 mm in depth for normal-sized tiles, that are about one-foot sq. (about 30 cm²).

The depth of the notches within the mortar will be adjusted relying on the scale of the tiles. For greater tiles, make them deeper, however for smaller hand instruments, make them shallower. It’s only a matter of determining how deep they attain. Examine your tiles once in a while to be sure to’re getting a good sign.

To verify if the mortar is evenly distributed and covers the total backside of the tile, merely carry it after it has been laid.

Whether or not you unfold the mortar in rows or for every tile individually is fully as much as you. Now you can start laying your tiles.

Laying Out the Tiles

Beginning with one wall, press the tile down firmly utilizing your arms to place it. After that, reverse the course you dragged the tile over the mortar. Drag the tile at you from the border that’s the farthest distance from you.

After you’ve positioned the tile the place it’s presupposed to go. Make that your tile is firmly affixed to the wall. Start in a nook and make your means alongside the wall all through most circumstances.

Including spacers to the corners of your tiles after you’ve organized two rows of the tiling is an choice. To have completely aligned and evenly spaced tiles, you’ll want to make use of the spacers. The tiling mortar must be allowed to dry for a day after all of the tiles and spacers have been put in.

Time to Grout

A man applying grout over the tiles.

Final however not least, fill within the seams with grout. You are actually to make use of grout for filling up the seams. Take away all of the spacers and blend up some grout earlier than you start.

To fill within the gaps between the tiles, unfold the grout evenly excessive of the tiles and push it down into the crevices. A humid sponge is a straightforward and fairly efficient instrument for the job. Simply watch out to not make the grout too runny by including an excessive amount of water with the sponge.

Wipe up the remaining grout with a sponge when you’ve unfold it. After a brief interval, a skinny layer of dry grout will seem on the tiles’ faces. After that, use a moist fabric to scrub the tile’s floor to do away with any residual grout.