Are you one of the 30 percent of homeowners surveyed who said the flooring in their house was what they disliked the most about the home?
Shag carpeting, vinyl flooring, outdated tile…it’s time for a home improvement project.
Are you planning to update your home with some of the latest products in ceramic tile?
Are you wondering if you need underlayment for ceramic tile? Hint: the answer is yes! Keep reading to learn all you need to know about ceramic tile underlayment.
Best Underlayment for Ceramic Tile
In order to keep your tile from flexing and possibly breaking, it’s important to do the necessary prep work before laying the tile. Part of the preparation is using the right underlayment.
The structure underneath your tile is made up of three components: the floor joists, the subfloor, and the underlayment. The subfloor is the thick layer that sits on top of the joists. It is a structural part of the home.
Underlayment is a thinner material that sits on top of the subfloor and gives the tile a smooth, flat surface to lay on. Let’s look at a few of the different types of underlayment.
Plywood Underlayment for Ceramic Tile
When using plywood as an underlayment for ceramic tile, it is best to use exterior grade plywood because the bonding adhesives are waterproof. This will keep the wood from swelling should water seep through during the tile installation.
When installing the plywood underlayment, the seams should not overlap with the subfloor and screws shouldn’t go all the way down into the floor joists. The underlayment needs to have some lateral movement.
Acoustic Underlay for Ceramic Tile
Hoping to temper the sound of walking on tiles? Choose an acoustical underlayment. This type of underlayment is installed to absorb the sound of your footsteps.
Rubber underlayment for ceramic tile is one material tile installers choose for this purpose. It has great sound absorption and it’s very durable.
It’s also mold- and mildew-resistant. Normally loose-laid but you can use double-sided tape, staples, nails, or glue to hold it in place under the tile.
Cement-Based Backer Board
The cement in the board is held together by mesh fiberglass. This type of underlayment is considered the best choice for ceramic tile. Almost anyone can do a quality job installing tile when using this type of underlayment.
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Underlayment for Ceramic Tile
Now that you know that you need underlayment for ceramic tile in order to do the job correctly, you can get all the supplies you need to start your project. Check the list of materials that are unsuitable for flooring underlayment when deciding what to use.
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