A tile contractor installs tile counters, floors, patios and wall coverings. They may be hired to provide their services in homes that are just being built or to come to houses that have already been built and are in need of improvements.
How Do I Select a Tile Contractor?
In order to legally become a tile contractor, the person doesn’t need to have any type of special schooling. A tile contractor may attend vocational or technical courses, however, but most tile contractors start out working for a tile expert and learn the trade through an apprenticeship. Therefore, it is important to ask the tile contractor to describe his or her training and experience so you can determine if that person is right for the job.
In most states, a license is not needed in order to work as a tile contractor. In states like Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Tennessee, the contractor only needs to obtain a license if he or she exceeds the limits for commercial jobs in each region—usually over $10,000 per job. Licenses are required in Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, Virginia and Washington. It is always beneficial to check with your local government to make sure your tile contractor is properly licensed.
What Can I Expect From My Tile Contractor?
Tile contractors clean, prepare and then tile the work area. The process starts with the installation of sub-flooring on a floor to ensure the area is even. Tiles are laid in the required pattern and a diamond wet saw is used to cut tiles. It is important to use a wet saw because tiles crack easily when cutting. Once the tiles are properly laid out, they are cemented to the floor using tile cement. The tile cement is spread out first in your work area and allowed to cure for fifteen minutes before you apply the tiles. Once this dries, usually in less than an hour, the tile contractor will apply the grout in between the grout and let that dry. Grout must cure for 24 hours before you walk on the tiles.
The process is the same for tile counters, bathroom areas and back splashes on walls. Outside tiles are usually set over a layer of concrete or sand to create vibrant patios or pool areas.