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Natural stone is porous, so every time you walk or spill a liquid on a stone tile that hasn't been sealed you run the risk of it staining. All natural stone should be sealed when used internally. Sealing stone floor tiles is part of the installation process and all our stone tiles are supplied unsealed. It is standard practise to seal the stone with at least 2applications of the sealant; once before you grout and once after. There are many different stone sealants on the market and every one will have a different effect on stone and that effect will be different depending on the type of stone. All our displays are fully sealed so you know what the floor will look like when it is completely finished. All photos of interiors on the website are of sealed natural stone floors too so you are getting a good indication of the finished look within the limits of photography. We stock 3 types of sealant and all our displays are sealed with one of these. Our sales staff can advise on the best sealant for your project once you have chosen your stone floor.
There are different types of adhesives and grouts for different tiles and situations. We can normally specify the correct type of product for your stone or porcelain floor - just ask us and we will ensure you get the right product specification. We stock all necessary products for fixing stone & porcelain floors on all common sub-floor types and are happy to add the correct products to any order. We also have general guidance sheets available on all common installation scenarios which list the type of fixing products required and those that can be bought from us.
Decoupling mat is a 2 layer breathable membrane that sits sandwiched between your sub-floor and your stone or porcelain floor tiles. The bottom layer adheres to the sub-floor and the top layer to the tile meaning there is no direct connection between the tile and the sub-floor. This is important when dealing with timber sub-floors and new screeded floors with or without underfloor heating. There will be more flex, contraction and expansion within these sub-floors than just using flexible tile adhesive can cope with. Decoupling mat will absorb this extra movement instead of it being transferred through to the tiled floor and is a very sensible investment.
Yes. Strengthening the floor with plywood, tile backer board or similar is often advisable when fixing stone or porcelain floor tiles. A decoupling mat (also known as an anticrack matting) and an S2 grade flexible floor tile adhesive and flexible grout must be used to fix floor tiles.
Yes, although minor bumps and hollows can be leveled by applying more or less floor tile adhesive. If you have major bumps and hollows then we would recommend using a floor levelling compound to provide a clean, level surface for tiling onto. A dry level screed is ideal for laying stone flooring. The floor must be clean, dry and grease free before laying any stone or porcelain floor tiles.