Sunday, October 02, 2005

Tile in the Sun Porch

I'm getting my downstairs sunporch floor done. It had hideous carpet on it, which I ripped out before I moved in. That left this subfloor, which although it was good quality plywood, was not that attractive.

I've considered various options. Finally I decided on tile. Three different people told me that new hardwood would not make me happy if I could see old hardwood from it. And, I can, since this is right off the living room.
Anyway, the consensus is that new hardwood looks cheap and plastic next to old hardwood. So, I decided to go with a tile.

Of course, you have to decide what type you're going to use. I chose natural materials - a slate - so I'd have some variations of color and texture. Each of these packages has 5 tiles. I bought extra because I might break one and I want some in reserve. They are HEAVY.

To prepare the surface, you have to put down cement board. Apparently you can't just slap slate down over subfloor. This is another example of a good reason to hire a professional.

Step two is to lay the tile. Apparently if you get a good tile person, they don't need to use spacers. They do it by feel. Having done layout for years, before computers did it for us, I understand that completely.

Each time a cut is required, there's a special piece of equipment to use that runs water over the tile while it's being cut. Chris's helper was in charge of that. Even though the tiles appear to be even across, the ones on the far wall required about a quarter inch cut.

This is Chris Miller, who has done a lot of work on my house. I am so fortunate to have found him. He does fantastic work and is very fair with his prices. He is a treasure.

His business has grown a lot since I first met him over three years ago. I'm so glad he still finds time for smaller jobs, inbetween building houses.

I've hired a lot of people to do a lot of different things. Chris is always my number one "go to" guy.

This weekend I'm going to seal the tile and Monday Chris is coming to grout it. An important thing to remember is if you use natural products, you have to seal them before you grout or the grout gets into all the crevices and you have a huge problem.

After I seal, the next big decision is grout color. I'm leaning toward a wheat color. We'll see what I end up with.

Ah... the joys of home ownership. I just keep doing things that I have no experience or knowledge with.

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