The common denominator in our installations is that the products on the top layer are rigid — they don’t flex or bend. And the factors beyond that are as varied as all the possible sandwich combinations in a New York deli.
Each project is as different as the location to be tiled, the material, the substrate, and the customer’s preferences. We enjoy the challenge of making sure we’ve selected the proper tile installation method and products to accommodate your surface, your application, your needs for the space, and the material you’d like us to install.
Some of the things we’ll be factoring into our estimates (and our conversations) are:
- Floor deflection (the up and down movement of a floor should not exceed L/360 for tile and L/720 for natural stone)
- Floor preparation (remove any existing adhesives, flatten problem areas by bringing substrate into required tolerances, scarify if needed)
- Needed coverage (required mortar contact on the back of tile in a dry area 80%; wet area 95%)
- Grout color and its impact on setting materials as well as end results (highly contrasting grouts can present a visual framing on some sheeted materials)
- Sealant needed prior to installation to protect the material from any staining during the grouting process (natural stones must be sealed prior to grout due to their susceptibility to staining)
- The size of the material to be installed (any tile more than 15” in any one direction is considered ‘large format’ and requires different mortars and substrate tolerances
- Composition of the tile itself (stone, glass, metal, sheeted mosaics, and accents with combinations of these –all require different setting materials, blades, tools, and care)
- Trowel and spacer type and size (tile, mortar, pattern, installer preference all factor in here)
- Movement joint locations and treatment (to allow for the movement that occurs as structures expand and contract)
- Pattern selected and its impact on installation waste factor as well as installation difficulty
- Job location – what it takes to get our heavy materials into the area, what hours we can work, how much protection of adjoining areas we’ll need to do, etc.
- Wet area/ interior or exterior/ angle of lighting/ long-term use & traffic in the area
- Base surface to be used (mud-set, backer board, membrane, etc.)
Those in our industry who tell you they can give you a ‘quick’ price per square foot for tile installation are either clairvoyant walking encyclopedias of construction, or they haven’t thought about all the factors that make up a long-lasting and beautiful tile installation. Most of the time, the best and most accurate things come to those who put some experience and careful consideration into all the options available. #ExperienceMatters #NTCAfivestar