Lay Vinyl Tiles

  • Lay vinyl tiles, AFTER
  • Lay vinyl tiles , BEFORE

A playroom all of their own is every kid’s dream, so when five-year-old Karissa Gouros was told she could have the new attic at her place she was thrilled.

Measuring 7.8 x 2.4 metres with a sloping ceiling, the attic is a good size for storing all her toys and books, with plenty of space left over for playing games solo or with friends.

Part of a second-storey addition to the house, the plasterboard walls and ceiling needed to be sealed and painted and a floor had to be laid.

Karissa wanted a bright, fun colour for the walls which meant the flooring couldn’t be dull or neutral. Her mum just wanted something easy to clean.  

The best floor

For a low-maintenance floor that lasts years, vinyl is ideal. It is comfortable underfoot, comes in a big range of patterns and is quick to DIY. 

Instead of sheet vinyl, large-format self-adhesive tiles were chosen for the attic to make the room look bigger. 

To create a designer look for the attic playroom that won’t date, marbled black and white tiles were laid in a chequerboard pattern. 

At 45.7cm square, the tiles add depth to the long, skinny space.

Winton Tiles, from Ideal DIY Floors cost about $4 each, and also come in cartons of 16 for about $71. 

To cover the almost 19 square metre attic, and factoring in an extra 10% for cutting and wastage, four cartons of each colour were bought. 

To lay the floor, the particleboard was sealed with Bondcrete, about $20, then the self-adhesivetiles laid directly on top.  

This article originally appeared in the May 2014 edition of Australian Handyman magazine 

Step 1. Prepare the floor

Apply diluted Bondcrete or similar sealer to the clean, dry particleboard subfloor using a lambswool applicator and leave to dry for an hour. TIP Before sealing, fill nail holes or big dents with timber filler then sand.

Step 2. Mark the grid

Find the centre of the room and draw a guideline across the floor with a steel rule, marking a second line at right angles to the first using the 3:4:5 method and a tape measure. TIP A builder’s square can also be used.

Step 3. Position the tiles

Test-fit the vinyl tiles on the floor with the paper backing intact, using the guidelines to check the fit and ensure you have enough tiles. Follow the pyramid laying pattern for the tiles, leaving the perimeter bare.

Step 4. Lay the tiles

Peel the paper backing off the first tile and position it against the guidelines, applying firm pressure all over the tile surface by hand. Lay the rest of the tiles in the pyramid pattern until the section is finished.

Step 5. Finish the floor

Working from the marked centre, continue laying the floor in sections until all the full-size tiles are laid, then use a roller to press each tile down. TIP A heavy wooden rolling pin can also be used to go over the tiles.

Step 6. Cut the tiles

Measure the perimeter and cut tiles to fit. Mark the paper backing using a pencil then cut using a utility knife with a steel rule as a guide. Lay the cut tiles around the perimeter with the cut edge against the wall.

Floor layout

Click on the floor layout to see measurement guidelines in mm for this project.

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