Ceramic Marble Floor
"Great communication, quality work, would recommend. Ken was easy to work with. The communication was great throughout the process and he was honest about our options. The pricing was reasonable as well. The refinished floors look beautiful and the new hardwood looks great as well. My only complaint would be that they didn't fill in the nail holes in the new hardwood so I had to go back and do that myself. We are very happy with the floors and would use them again."
~ Chris from Crofton, MD
"We had the most wonderful experience with FloorGem. My husband and I knew very little about refinishing our floors. Ken was so knowledgeable and helpful. He explained all of our options and the benefits of each. The project was completed on time and on budget. There were no surprises. I couldn't believe how clean our house was when we returned. There was very little dust and the floors look absolutely amazing! We can't thank Ken and his team enough!"
~ Jess from Catonsville, MD
"FloorGem did a great job. The floors look great! They returned the following day to be sure we were satisfied."
~ Kelly from Columbia, MD
"Ken is wonderful. He gave very helpful advice about my project, even when it meant not doing a piece of work. The bamboo floor his guys installed is lovely, and very well done. I only gave four stars instead of five because the tile installer was not as much of an expert as the wooden floor installers were. I would certainly recommend this company."
~ Susan from Washington, DC
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Putting down a stone or tile floor is an exciting time because nothing else fills the room with so much color and texture as tile or a good quality of stone. And as each tile goes down, you see another step toward the fulfillment of your decorating dream. However, unlike most other floors there is a considerable amount of preparation work to do before you reach this stage of actually putting down the flooring.
Moving and Removing Obstacles
This is not a procedure you want to do 15 minutes before the tile installers arrive. Many people forget that moving furniture not only entails lifting and shuffling but emptying drawers and finding suitable places for the belongings while the job is being done.
Then there are the appliances and these are not light. You can rent a fridge mover from the rental store or let the flooring workers do this. They will charge you but they have the experience, especially with heavier items like a piano. However, before you move them remember that this may take up to 2 weeks so plan on what you are going to do with your cooking and dish washing until then.
Toilets and sinks in the bathroom have to be removed for a good tile job and so you might want to consult a plumber on this. The toilet will have to be properly installed with a new seal after the flooring is completed. If this is the kitchen check and see if there are any gas lines that have to be disconnected. Again, this would be a job for a plumber.
Flooring and Subflooring
There is a good chance that you have a carpet, linoleum or old tile where you want the new floor to go in. This has to be removed and the surface made flat before the new tile can go down. Some carpets have been glued down and the foam back will stick to the subfloor. An ice scraper works well to get this up as it does with old tile. Any glue from linoleum or carpet should be scraped off. In addition, there is question of disposing of the old material so you might want to check on renting a bin.
It is a good idea to line the subfloor with a new layer or substrate. Some tilers like cement board or a "waffled" product called Ditra which compensates for small movements in the floor and will not let these affect the tile. As well, if the grout fails it is a waterproof barrier which will protect the rooms below.
There is a very chance that the substrate flooring plus thinset mortar plus tile will lift you floor up as much as 3/4" or more. This not only has an effect on the other floors in the home it directly affects any door in the vicinity. Before you take off each door put a tiny mark on each side of the wall to mark where the bottom was. Then measure up an inch and mark both the frame and the door. When you are ready to put the doors back on measure from the mark on the wall down to the tile and you will have the exact height of where the bottom of the door should be. If you have a swinging door, you will probably have to take off another 1/4" so that the door swings freely but try it out before you cut any more.
This is a good time to rethink your heating requirements for the area. If there are ducts these may have to moved up to match the expected height of the tile but this has to be done before you put down the substrate. Rough estimations are are usually good enough as vent covers usually fit inside the ducts. If they are too high they can be trimmed with tin snips.
Radiant floor heating may be on your mind but do this before you make an appointment for the tile. The tiling company can do the installation of the wiring but an electrician should wire the system back to the breaker and be there to test it before they start on the tile. It takes a few days for the mortar coating the wire to cure before tile can go down.
Hydronic radiant heat is a whole other thought process as it requires a hot water source so a plumber should be consulted early, probably at the same time you are picking out your flooring.
Before the job take out the old and measure out how many feet of the new trim that you will need. Old wood is brittle so be prepared to replace it all. You might want to have it pre-painted do that it can go down already finished after the flooring company leaves.
The Day of the Tiling
Now you have clean clear area to tile. Thinset can take anywhere from 7 - 24 hours to set depending on the humidity but give it a day to be sure before grouting.
For more information on setting tile and stone - or for a free estimate - contact the experts at Floorgem.