Tile-on-tile installation may seem like a quick, simple and cost-effective alternative when upgrading a floor. Unfortunately, while it does present the benefit of eliminating demolition, it also comes with many risks, which if ignored, could lead to very costly failures.

Zamaswazi Ntobela, Tile Adhesive Product Manager at MAPEI South Africa, shares his expertise on what to consider before proceeding with a tile-on-tile installation.

  1. Ensure that the existing tile layer is sound, has been installed correctly and meets the technical requirements before even considering tiling over it. “Customers need to remember that the existing tiles become the foundation substrate for the new tiles – and the new surface layer is directly impacted by the layer below. This point cannot be stressed enough,” says Ntobela.
  2. Environmental considerations. Tiles are affected by thermal expansion due to environmental conditions. When it’s cold, they contract and when it’s warmer, they expand, which is why adequate joints between tiles in any tiling project, including tile-on-tile is always recommended. If not, cracking, popping out or lifting of the new tiles could result.
  3. A common misconception is that one can simply tile over existing tiles with new ones. This is most definitely not the case. A complete system that includes suitable Antifracture Membrane and a bonding promoter such as Eco Prim Grip as well as the use of the correct adhesives is vital. Keraflex Range or Adesilex Range are best suited to tile-on-tile installations because of their adhesion strength and deformable characteristics with extended open time.

For help with tiling queries, be sure to contact Mapei for assistance.

For more information, contact Mapei:
Tel: +27 11 552 8476
Website: www.mapei.co.za

Main image: Cracked tiles due to incorrect application.

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