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How To: Replace Broken Wall Tiles

February 23, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 264

When replacing a broken wall tile is so easy, it's a shame to let a couple of broken tiles spoil the appearance of an otherwise lovely bathroom.

Tiling requires very few specialist tools and what is required is inexpensive and easy to get hold of.

When replacing broken wall tiles always wear protective eye wear and gloves and take great care, broken tiles are very sharp.

Removing the Tile

- Start by spreading a large folded towel beneath the area you are working in. This will help prevent impact damage should a tool or tile fall.

- Start by removing the damaged tile. If the bathroom is damp the cracked tile may well come away in your hands; the chances are though it will need a little encouragement.

- Cut two long lengths masking tape. Stick them diagonally across the tile to form an 'x' shape.

- Fit an electric drill with a 5mm masonry bit and drill holes at small intervals evenly spaced along the length of each piece of tape. Only drill to the depth of the tile and not into the wall beneath.

Removing the Grout

- Scrape the grout from around the edge of the damaged tile. If the grout is damp or loose you may be able to carefully prise it out using the tip of a flat-head screwdriver or the edge of a paint scraper. If the grout is well fixed you may find it worth buying a heavy-duty grout rake. A grout rake consists of a serrated blade held in a small handle. As the blade is drawn across the grout the serrated teeth break down the grout so that it falls away. If you have a large area of tiles to replace it may well be worth investing in a grout removal kit that can be attached to a corded rotary tool such as a 'Dremel'. The kit comes with a guide that keeps the blade at the correct cutting angle. The blade rotates at great speed and is used to literally drill the grout away.

- Once the grout has been removed, the tile will need to be chipped away using a cold chisel. You may be lucky and the whole tile pops off in one, but the chances are that you will need to chip away slowly, working from the centre out, and along the lines of masking tape.

- Remove the masking tape and any loose pieces of tile. Using a wood chisel, bevel side down; carefully prise free any remaining pieces of tile.

- Using a wallpaper scraper, scrape out the remains of the adhesive to leave a nice flat surface, before brushing away any debris with a soft brush.

- Offer up a tile into the gap and check the level. If the tile rocks the surface isn't even and more adhesive needs to be removed.

Applying Adhesive and Grout

- Spread the back of the replacement tile with adhesive and press it firmly in place making sure that it is level with the surrounding tiles.

- Using a damp cloth wipe away any excess adhesive before positioning tile 'spacers' evenly around the tile. Leave to dry.

- Remove the tile 'spacers'. Using a flexible grout spreader, press grout into the joints. Spread the grout in all directions to make sure that the joint is well filled. Scrape away any excess grout before wiping the tile with a 'barely wet' cloth.

- To guarantee a waterproof seal run the end of a blunt stick or the tip of your finger along each joint.

- When the grout is dry polish the tile clean with a dry cloth or your bathroom will look dull and un-clean.

After ensuring all the tiles are in pristine condition; investing in a cheap bath to set off the new look of the bathroom would be a great idea.

Source: EzineArticles
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