How to Install and Plan for Heated Tile Floors

Posted on Feb 14, 2015
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Featured Image:  Radiant Floor Heating – Courtesy of Houzz by Designer Kerrie L. Kelly

Who wouldn’t love to step onto a heated tile floor after getting out of a warm bath or shower? Providing radiant heat by installing electric in-floor heating mats under a tile floor is the perfect way to warm up those cold bathroom floors. Install radiant heating mats with the purpose of providing supplemental heat, removing the chill factor from the floor, or as space heat to warm the entire bathroom. They’re also great for warming floors in entryways and kitchens. With a fairly simple installation process, heated floors are a little luxury anyone can enjoy!

Planning for Heated Tile Floors

There are a few things you’ll need to take care of before heating up those floors: 1) Since the radiant electric mats are installed along with the tile, you’ll need to install new bathroom flooring, even if you already have tile floors. There are many great tile options.. 2) You’ll need to find electrical power, as the heating mats used are connected to the electricity in the home and controlled by a thermostat. The temperature can be set to remain at one constant level or change according to the time of day. For a small area, power can be drawn from an adjacent GFCI (ground-fault circuit interrupter) safety outlet. If the thermostat you purchase is already GFCI protected, you can use any outlet. The mat must also be GFCI protected. 3) If you need a mat outside of the standard sizes available, you’ll have to special-order a custom-sized one. Installation of Heated Tile Floors

You’ll want to follow the instructions provided with the mat, flooring, and thermostat. The basic steps are to:

  • Prep your floor as you would for any tiling job.
  • Do a test layout to avoid any problems and check the fit of the mat.
  • Install the mat, gluing and taping it into place. It will be embedded in the mortar when you lay the tile.
  • If you’re not going to tile right away, lay thick corrugated cardboard over the mat to protect the cable.
  • Set up the wiring. If you’re not comfortable with this part, it’s best to hire an electrician.
  • Spread the mortar and place the tile.
  • Finish the wiring. Again, you may want to have an electrician complete this part.

Other than the electrical steps, it doesn’t sound so complicated, does it? With the right preparation and  time set aside, you’ll be on your way to warm floors (and feet) in no time! To learn more about heated tile floors, stop by any of our Arizona Tile locations to speak with one of our professionally trained consultants.

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