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Bath math; tile guile takes awhile

Skill levelĀ skill3

Laying floor tile is harder than it looks. Gluing the tiles to the floor is not hard. It’s the prep work and the calculations.

The M word

Tiling a floor will make you wish you had paid attention in math class.

It’s part arithmetic (How many tiles and how much mortar do we need?), part geometry (How are we going to make the tiles square to the walls?), and part logic (How do we make sure we end up with a full tile in the doorway?).


We took our time and thought through the details before placing the first tile. For example, where the tile meets the door molding you could try to cut a curvy piece of tile that matches the molding (bad idea) or cut the molding and slide the tile under it (good idea).

back saw jambSince we were replacing the (thin) sheet vinyl in our bathroom with (thick) ceramic tile, I needed to cut off the bottom of the door jambs (the molding around a door frame) so the tiles would fit underneath. I put a scrap piece of tile on the floor next to a door jamb to guide the back saw to the perfect height and ensure a level cut. Continue reading Bath math; tile guile takes awhile