Clay floor tiles are made from soil burnt in a kiln to form the different shapes and sizes. These can be used on verandas, balconies, walk ways or entrance lobbies. Other areas are those with high human traffic. They give a rustic floor finish. For good building aesthetics, ensure they are laid in areas with a protective apron of slabs or any other materials around them. This ensures that mud, soil or dirt does not cover them. This may cause a discoloration.
The clay tiles should be selected carefully. This will ensure that the well burn with the same color and shape are used. The size is normally from six by six inches square. Since the tiles come in pairs, this means that they should be split into two equal parts. The thickness is usually three quarters of an inches. This is including the ribs made after cutting into two. When laying the tiles immediately outside the house, the floor should be lower by four inches of depth from the internal floor concrete level.
The procedure of laying clay tiles, starts by soaking them in water. The floor is prepared by hacking and removing any dirt or dried mortar. After this, the floor is swept and thoroughly watered. A floor screed of the mix one part cement and three parts sand is laid on the concrete floor. It is done in bays of three by three feet square. This ensures cement in the mortar does bot set. The mortar is wood floated with a cement slurry. The clay tiles are then laid on to the floor screed.
The wet clay tiles are laid on cement slurry with the ribs facing down. One tile is placed on one edge of slab while another put on the other end. A string is tied on top of the tiles for ensuring the levels are kept to a small slope. The rest of the area under the string is filled up gradually. A slope away from the house for draining off the water is done. The joints in between the clay tile are finished with pointing. The pointing is done using oxide matching the tiles. Curing is done for one week. The tiles can be left as they are with the rustic look. A top coat varnish can be done as a protection.
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Source by Andrew Karundu
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