Step 2: Trowel On the Tile Mastic

Trowel on the tile mastic
Photo by: Webb Chappell
«»
Start at the intersection of the two layout lines and spread a thick layer of tile mastic onto one quadrant of the wall with the smooth edge of a trowel.

Tile mastic has a working window of about 20 minutes, so apply it to an area no larger than 2 or 3 square feet.

Use the notched edge of the trowel to rake out the mastic and make a series of deep ridges.

Tip: If the mastic starts to lose its tackiness, or "skin over," scrape the wall clean and apply fresh mastic.
Ask TOH users about Tubs

Contribute to This Story Below

    Tools List

    • notched trowel
      Notched trowel,
      used to apply tile mastic
    • grout sponge
      Grout sponge,
      for wiping tiles clean
    • rubber trowel
      Rubber trowel,
      for applying the grout
    • drill
      Drill with diamond-grit hole saw,
      for drilling holes in tile
    • tile nippers
      Tile nippers,
      used to notch tiles to fit around plumbing
    • margin trowel
      Margin trowel,
      used to mix mortar and grout
    • tile cutter
      Tile cutter,
      rents for $15 to $20 a day
    • two-foot level
      Level and straightedge
    • drywall knife
      4-in. drywall knife,
      to embed joint tape in mortar
    • caulk gun
      Caulking gun with siliconized acrylic caulk

    Shopping List

    1. GLAZED CERAMIC TILE

    2. LATEX TILE MASTIC

    3. UNSANDED TILE GROUT

    4. CEMENT BACKER BOARD

    5. BACKER BOARD SCREWS

    6. FIBERGLASS-MESH JOINT TAPE

    7. THINSET MORTAR

    for skim-coating the backer board



    8. LATEX-BASED GROUT ADDITIVE

    to strengthen the grout