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Floor Tile Adhesive: An Overview
Floor Tile Adhesive

Floor Tile Adhesive Installation - W.W. Henry Co.

Copyright/Courtesy W.W. Henry Co.
When laying tile, you can use either the self-adhesive variety or the type that requires the use of a separate floor tile adhesive. This article focuses on adhesive for resilient flooring tiles (vinyl, linoleum, composition, etc.) rather than ceramic tile, although some of these products do overlap.

We'll take you on a short product tour of different types and brands of floor tile adhesive. But first, what are some of the basics you should know?

Q: Self-adhesive tiles seem like they would be better. Are there any advantages to using tiles that require floor tile adhesive?

Yes. Self-adhesive tiles are good in some instances, but there is a very good reason why they haven't taken over the entire tile-laying industry:
  • Self-adhesive tiles are very sticky. You need to get your placement right, because they are difficult to shift around. "Difficult" is putting it nicely; usually they are impossible to move.
  • By contrast, floor tile adhesive has a long working time that allows for repositioning.
  • Tiles adhered with floor tile adhesive usually will not come up by themselves. But self-adhesive tiles have a bad habit of coming later on down the road.
  • Using separate adhesive allows you to stick tiles on surfaces that are less than perfect. For self-adhesive tiles, you pretty much need smooth, dry floors or you will have problems.

Q: I hate the smell of strong adhesives. Is this stuff bad?

Not really. The smell is not very strong. You can buy latex-based, water-soluble floor adhesive for easy clean up.

Q: What kind of coverage and cost does this floor adhesive have?

While it depends on the product, you can figure about 200 square feet per gallon. Price depends on perspective, but it generally is not too expensive--around $5 to $10 per quart.
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