There are two main rules to installing and setting tile. Make it stick, and make it look good. using a better thinset gives a better bond. I will always use a modified thinset. This is a mortar based adhesive that has an acrylic or latex additive to provide a stickier and more durable formula. Scratch coating the back of the tile will achieve a better bond as well but is not necessary unless the thinset has had time to skin over. Mastic can be used to set tile on walls as long as it is not a wet area. Mastic is a water based adhesive with no cement or sand present. Setting the tile so that it is perfectly flat and straight with equal distance between them is easy to understand but difficult to physically achieve. I have never set tile on a concrete slab that was so flat that I did not have to add thinset to the low spots or subtract thinset from the high spots. A mortar bed installed by a journeyman tile installer will be the best surface to set tile on top of. Drywall shims are used to help get cement board flat and plumb on the walls. Sometimes thinset can be used to fill in the valleys on a concrete slab or hardibacker floor as a “tuning up” procedure before the setting begins.
Inquire about our setting process and we’d love to explain our process involved. It’s important that it comes out good and professional. We service all over San Diego County, Santee, El Cajon, and the surrounding areas require a seasoned veteran in James Groff Tile and Stone. Ask about our customer service advantage. License #914470, Bond # SC6080959, insurance policy #U15AC87582-00. Browse past project photos. Contact for a free estimate. References available upon request!