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Tools & Accessories

Which products should I use to clean my tiles?
If you love your tiles as much as we do at Tile Warehouse, it’s vital that you clean them regularly to ensure they continue to look good for many years to come. Which is why we’ve created this handy guide to highlight some of the best products on the market right now for cleaning and caring for your tiles both during and after they have been laid in your home.

What is the best product for cleaning new tiles?

When it comes to cleaning your tiles for the first time after they have just been laid, we would recommend washing them with Fila Deterdek Pro. Ideal for use on Ceramic, Quarry, Porcelain and Terracotta tiles. Fila Deterdek Pro uses surfactants to remove excess adhesive, grout and any other installation deposits without damaging the surface.

How do you use Fila Deterdek Pro?

First, wet the surface of the tiles with water. Then mix Fila Deterdek Pro with water (at a ratio of 1:5 or 1:10 (i.e., one litre of cleaner to 5 or 10 litres of water). Apply the solution over a few square metres at a time; wait a few minutes and then rub vigorously with a single-disc machine or abrasive pad. Remove any residue using microfibre cloths or a wet vacuum cleaner and rinse with plenty of water. Should any stubborn residue remain, wash the tiles again BUT with a more concentrated solution.
Tip: Do not use Fila Deterdek Pro on polished marble or on any materials that are sensitive to acids. If you can test the product on a small area of the surface or even better a loose sample to ensure resistance to the product prior to full application.

What tools do I need for cleaning tiles?

A sponge it may be but the Dex Professional Tiling Sponge is guaranteed to have your tiles looking as good as new every time you clean them Anyone who has tiled will know that grout has a habit of getting literally everywhere. Thankfully the Dex Wash Float makes light work of removing excess grout from your tiled floors and walls. Another firm favourite at Tile Warehouse are the Dex Grout Clean Up Pads. They are perfect for removing so-called ‘grout haze’ from newly laid tiles.

Which products should I use for regularly cleaning my tiles?

You’ve invested a lot of time, effort and money in your tiles so it’s important to keep them looking good for as long as possible. Unfortunately, a lot of household cleaners are not ph. neutral which can sometimes affect the finish of your tiles. We’d therefore recommend a specialist cleaning product for your tiles. One of the best is Fila Cleaner Pro. Fully biodegradable, it expertly cleans the tile surface without attacking the material that’s being treated. Plus, thanks to its high dilution ratio, there’s no need to rinse after use as the product does not leave behind any residue.

How to use Fila Cleaner Pro?

If you’re giving your tiles a routine clean, we’d recommended diluting your Fila Cleaner Pro at a ratio of 1:200 (i.e. 25 ml in 5 litres of water) prior to cleaning.

What are the best products for protecting grout?

To protect your new grout, we recommend using the Fila Fugaproof Grout Protector Spray on all types of grouting. The VOC-free water-based technology is brilliant at protecting your grout by preventing water and other substances being absorbed, leading to your grout becoming discoloured. And there you have it. This is by no means an exhaustive guide. It's a snapshot of some of the best products on the market right now for keeping your tiles looking good for as long as possible.

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What are tile spacers
Ever wondered how you can maintain a consistent space or “gap” between tiles when installing them to either a floor or the wall? The answer – tile spacers. Tile spacers are small pieces of plastic, usually found the shape of a T, which are widely used to achieve an even finish prior to grouting your tiles.

Why are tile spacers important?

If you don’t use tile spacers, you are at risk of having your tiles ending up crooked. Tile spacers nestle perfectly in the corner of each tile enabling you to ensure a straight, even professional finish, whether you are tiling in the bathroom, hallway, kitchen or living room. They also ensure that each tile is properly grouted with the right amount of product. Tile spacers also avoid tiles getting too close to each other, which could potentially lead to damage if they there were to expand. Tile spacers also making tiling faster, and much more efficient, because you don’t have to take the time to measure the gap between each tile or worry about uneven results. Ranging in size from 1mm to 10mm, all you need to do is decide on your chosen spacing, and then just use your spacers, and lay down your tile, and you’re good to go!

How to use tile spacers

Tile spacers couldn’t be easier to use. Simply place one at each corner of your tiles as you’re laying them down, and you push the tiles together until the spacer is contacting each corner. And, then when your tiles have firmly adhered to the floor or wall, simply remove them prior to applying your grout. In most instances, your tile spacers will be fine to recycle ready for the next time you tile.

Need more information?

If you have any questions regarding selecting the right tiles for your home, then feel free to contact our Customer Services team using our web chat facility.

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What is the purpose of matting
Matting is designed to prevent newly laid tile floors from cracking if the surface beneath them has the potential to move. If the surface does move, this can lead to tiles cracking and coming away from the floor.

Why use matting?

Any movement, whether shrinkage or expansion, can cause stress cracks that can transfer through to the tiled surface, causing the tile to either break or even worse as previously mentioned. Matting helps to prevent this happening by absorbing any lateral movement and transferring this evenly across the floor. Matting also has the ability to bridge static cracks and can therefore be laid on existing floors with cracks of up to 3mm.

Where can you use matting?

Matting can be used on a wide range of surfaces such as concrete, mortar screeds, gypsum-based screeds and timber floors. It is also particularly useful when installing underfloor heating and provides a decoupling layer between the underfloor heating and the tiles.

What is Durabase CI++

Durabase CI++ is the ideal product for creating a crack resistant (as well as waterproof) membrane that isolates the tile from the original surface allowing you tile directly onto it and further protect your tiles from cracking due to movement in the floor. Please note that Durabse is not suited to tiles smaller than 50mm x 50mm. Key benefits of Durabase CI++
  • Prevents surface cracks caused by lateral movement
  • 100% waterproof (when used in conjunction with Durabase Joint Tape)
  • Bridges gaps of up to 3mm in substrates
  • Suitable for use on newly laid concrete and existing floors

How to fit Durabase

  • Ensure your floor is clean
  • Next measure the area required and cut your matting to size, allowing a 3-5mm expansion gap around the perimeter
  • Apply the flexible adhesive to the substrate using a 4mm notched trowel then place the matting fleece face down. Once firm press down using a grout float to ensure a good bond
  • Then apply a layer of adhesive to the surface of the matting, ensuring all the indents of the matting are fully filled, leaving no air pockets or voids
  • Finally, seal all joints, wall junctions and transitions using Durabase Joint Tape and the same adhesive
  • Once your adhesive has dried your tiles are ready to be fitted.

Need more information?

If you have any questions regarding selecting the right tiles for your home, then feel free to contact our Customer Services team using our web chat facility.

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How to use levelling clips


What are levelling clips

One of the most common problems when laying tiles is ensuring your tiles always remain level. Help is at hand though in the form of levelling clips. Designed for fast installation, levelling clips are made up of two elements, a clip and a wedge. Suitable for use on both floors and walls, they not only guarantee that your tiles will be smooth and level but also guard against being left with any lipping or exposed edges. Levelling clips are perfect for aligning tiles up to 15mm thick, holding your tiles in place during installation to ensure even grout joints between your tiles. Plus, the holes in the base of the clip allow for the tile adhesive to pass through, ensuring no voids are left under the tile. As an added bonus, they come with a specially designed break off point on the clip for quick removal after use.

How to use levelling clips

Using levelling clips in the home couldn’t be simpler. Once you’ve applied your adhesive and fitted your tile slide the required number of clips under the tile (approx. 50mm from the edge). If you require grout lines wider than 2mm, please use the clips in conjunction with wider tile spacers. Then lay the next tile and place the clips under the tile as per above. Now slide the wedge into the clip ensuring a snug fit. Adjust the tile so the sides are correctly aligned and pushed tightly against the clips. Sometimes it’s useful to add the same size tile spacers into the corners of each tile as you go. Simply repeat this process until you’ve finished applying your tiles. Once you’ve finished tiling leave your adhesive to fully dry. When ready, remove the wedge from the clip and kick off the side of the clip to snap them off. The clip is designed to snap off below the tile line. If you’re using levelling clips on a wall, use a rubber mallet to remove them so as not to mark or damage the tiles. And, remember to keep your wedges, as they can be used again on your next tiling project.  

Need more information?

If you have any questions regarding selecting the right tiles for your home, then feel free to contact our Customer Services team using our web chat facility.

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If this has whetted your appetite to learn more about tiles, then why not check out these related advice articles: How to use tile spacers          
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What tools do you need to tile a floor?
If you are thinking of tiling your floor, then you are going to need the right tools in order to get the job done safely and securely. Thankfully Tile Warehouse is here to help on this front. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500"] Chartwell Black[/caption] Floor tile installations require a combination of common household tools like a tape measure and spirit level with more product specific tools like notched trowels, grout floats, tile cutters etc.

What safety wear is needed for tiling a floor?

It’s always better to be safe than sorry so we would always advise using protectives googles and gloves wherever possible when installing floor tiles, especially when using tile cutters as well as tile nippers. Knee pads are also a good option if you are planning on tiling a large area.

What should I use to cut tiles?

It is very likely that you will have to cut tiles during installation to fit the necessary space. There are two main types – manual and electric. Manual tile cutters are fine for ceramic and smaller porcelain tiles but for everything else then an electric ‘wet’ cutter is recommended. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="300"] Vitrex 450w Torque Master Power Wet Saw[/caption] The other tool you may need to invest in for tile cutting is a pair of tile nippers. Low cost, tile nippers are primarily used to make small circular cuts in a tile so that they can fit around the back of a sink or toilet.  

Are their specific trowels for fitting tiles?

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="300"] Dex S/S 10x20mm Notch Trowel[/caption] We would always recommend using a minimum 10mm notched trowel when it comes to applying a bed of adhesive on which to lay your tiles. They have been purposely designed for scooping, spreading, levelling and combing the adhesive in the home. It’s also worth investing in the stainless-steel version as this won’t rust, even after repeated use. Don’t forget that when trowelling your adhesive onto the floors, you make sure to trowel at a 45 degree angle and to press hard scraping the floor to leave what’s known as a ‘notch of adhesive.’

Why do I need a rubber mallet for tiling floors?

A rubber mallet is extremely useful if you find tiles aren’t aligned while fitting. Simply tap the tile gently with the rubber mallet to help bed it tile further into the adhesive and then use your spirit level to make sure your tiles are even. If this doesn’t work first time don’t panic. Simply repeat the process until you are happy.

Do I need a grout float to grout tiles?

The last tool you are going to need when tiling is a grout float. A grout float is a purpose made tool designed to spread your grout over the tile and in between the tiles. While a grout float shares many similarities with a trowel, the bottom of the float is actually made of rubber to help disperse the grout evenly. It’s also worth investing in a tile sponge at the same time to clean away any excess grout that may be left on your tiles after you’ve finished grouting. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="300"] Dex Grout Float[/caption] The final thing to do is make sure you have all your tools to hand before you begin tiling your floor. And, if by any chance, you have forgotten anything you can always log onto the Tile Warehouse and order the missing items from our Fixing & Finishing section for next day delivery. We also offer the option of spreading your payments using Klarna if you prefer.    
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