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How to Lay Ceramic Tiles on a Parquet Floor

Installing ceramic tile on top of parquet floors is not the ideal choice. Wood flooring will naturally expand and contract with moisture, causing the grout in the tile to crack. Installing ceramic tile on top of parquet is not recommended. However, removing parquet is a difficult task. If your parquet is in good shape and solidly adhered to the existing subfloor, you might end up with decent results.

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  1. Carefully examine the floor for loose sections. Make sure that all parquet is solidly glued to the subfloor. Re-glue any pieces that are peeling or shifting with a good quality wood flooring glue. Check for any water damage. Water-damaged areas may have expanded and may create an uneven surface. Sand these areas so they are level with the rest of the floor.

  2. Install a waterproofing membrane over the top of the parquet using thin set mortar. Make sure that the membrane is smooth and free of any lumps or bubbles.

  3. Find the centre of the room. Measure to the centre of two opposing walls and snap a chalk line from these two points. Place your first tile at the midpoint of the chalk line.

  4. Place your first two rows of tiles. One row goes horizontally along this chalk line. The other row goes vertically, dividing your room into four sections. Use spacers if you are a novice working with ceramic tile.

  5. Apply a thin, smooth coat of adhesive and lay all whole tiles directly onto your parquet floor. Stop at the edges when no additional whole tiles will fit. Wipe up any adhesive that squeezes up between the tiles. Use a glue solvent to clean up any adhesive that gets on the face of the tiles.

  6. Cut tiles to fit into the spaces at the perimeter of the room. Leave a space at the edges that is approximately the same width as the space between tiles unless you plan to install trim moulding on top of the tile.

  7. Mix the grout to a paste consistency. Apply grout using a rubber grout float. Clean up any extra grout with water and a sponge. Allow the grout to dry completely.

  8. Seal grout using a grout sealer to help preserve the job and keep the grout from getting stained by spills and dirt.

  9. Warning

    According to Floors Transformed, wood flooring material is unsuitable subfloor for tile installation. For best results, parquet floors should be removed and a proper subfloor installed before proceeding with your tiling project.

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Things You'll Need

  • Level
  • Tile cutter
  • Sponge
  • Rags
  • Rubber grout float
  • Tile adhesive
  • Spacers
  • Caulk (silicone)
  • Grout
  • Grout sealer

About the Author

Lisa East Hunter

Lisa East Hunter is a consultant and freelance writer in Phoenix. Her background in marketing and technology led her to explore all avenues of writing. She is currently dividing her time between freelance writing and her consulting business. Hunter has a Bachelor of Science in management information systems and marketing.

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