DIY – Handy Hints from GMT 24:7
by Brett Hawkins
While ceramic surfaces are generally the most durable and low maintenance surfaces around, they can become cracked or chipped if a heavy object comes in to contact with them.
However, this is not the end of the world, broken tiles are fairly easy to replace. But, remember one important tip – take it easy with the hammer, or you’ll end up having to replace more than one broken tile.
So, here’s your GMT 24:7 Handy Hints step-by-step guide to replacing a broken tile:
1. Remove grout: Put safety glasses on to protect your eyes from any dust or loose fragments of tile, then rake out the grout around the broken tile using a scoring tool. Be careful not to apply too much pressure – one slip and you could damage a neighbouring tile, creating more work for yourself.
2. Loosen tile: Apply masking tape around the edges of the adjacent tiles in order to protect them. Then, using a 6mm ceramic drill bit, drill evenly spaced holes into the broken tile. This will help free the broken tile from the original adhesive and make it easier to chisel out.
3. Chisel out the broken tile: Carefully chisel out the broken pieces of tile using a hammer and a small 6mm chisel, working from the centre to the outer edges, starting with the chisel at 90 degrees to the surface until you penetrate the glaze, then work round to a 45 degree angle, slowly chipping away removing the unwanted broken tile. Once removed, clean all of the original adhesive off using a wider chisel, leaving a solid flat surface to bond the replacement tile.
4. Apply new tile: Comb a small amount of adhesive over the newly exposed flat surface using a 6mm notched trowel, and again on the backside of the new tile. Set the tile in place, applying a firm amount of pressure in order to level it off with the adjacent tiles, and ensure it is centred so that the spacing is even on all sides.
5. Grouting: Wait at least three-four hours for the adhesive to set (or ideally do steps 1-4 one day and complete the job the next day), then mix up a small quantity of grout and trowel the grout into the joints using a rubber grouting float held at a 45 degree angle to the surface. Wait 15 minutes for it to harden and clean off the excess with a damp sponge.
6. Allow the grout to dry and avoid any contact with the replaced tile for 24 hours.
With more than 15 years experience in the Algarve, GMT 24:7 is your local expert in all areas of general building and property maintenance. If you would like more information on any of their DIY Handy Hints, or would like to discuss any aspect of your property please contact Brett Hawkins, tel +351 282 098 600, email [email protected] or visit www.gmt247.eu.
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