The Complete Guide To Tile Spacers

Learn everything you need to know about tile spacers and why they are crucial to perfecting your tiling project.
Written By: David White | Updated:
What Size Tile Spacers
David White/DIY Works

Tile spacers are small cross-shaped pieces of plastic that are designed to provide a consistent spacing between tiles. Whether you want to tile a floor or wall, various sizes are available to best suit your project. They are seen as an essential tool required for tiling, and if you are new to tiling, the information below will help you choose a tile spacer size.

What Size Tile Spacers To Use?

The size of the tile spacer you decide to use is highly dependent upon your personal preference because some people may prefer a large gap between the tiles, whereas others may prefer a smaller gap.

The benefit of using a larger tile spacer is that it makes the grout lines stand out, which can be a feature of the floor or wall design. Larger spacers can also make the tiles easier to repair if required too.

However, the larger gap between the tiles when using a larger tile spacer size may trap dirt more easily, which means you may want to invest in a quality grout cleaner to ensure that your wall or floor tiles don’t look dirty.

It’s worth noting that there are British Standards to consider when choosing between the different tile spacer sizes. In short, it’s recommended that wall tile spacers are 2 to 3 mm and floor tile spacers are 3 to 5 mm.

Tile Spacers

David White/DIY Works

How Many Spacers Do I Need?

Tile spacers can be bought online or at any DIY shop, and regardless of the size of the tile spacer you choose, they are cheap to buy in bulk. Rather than buying too little, it’s always better to overestimate because nothing is worse than running low when you are in the middle of tiling.

Regarding how many spacers are required for tiling, you can multiply the number of tiles by four.

How To Use Tile Spacers

After you have applied adhesive and laid the tiles, you can proceed to use tile spacers. To use them, place the tile spacers at each corner of the tile and then push the tiles together for a consistent gap between them.

Below is an example of using tile spacers from a recent project where we tiled a wet room.

How To Use Tile Spacers

David White/DIY Works

When To Remove Tile Spacers

The length of time you should wait until you remove the tile spacers highly depends upon the type of adhesive used. For example, fast-setting adhesives may fully cure in 30 minutes, so you should remove tile spacers before 30 minutes. Most adhesive brands state on the instructions when the correct time to remove any spacers is.

Failing to remove the spacers in enough time could mean they are impossible to remove. On the flip side, removing them too early may result in the tiles moving and ruining the overall appearance of the laid tiles. Therefore, you’ll want to keep your eye on the time they’ve been installed to avoid disappointment.

To remove tile spacers with minimal effort, use a chisel or the end of a scraper. Once removed, you can even quickly wash them and use them again for your next tiling project.

Conclusion

No professional tiling job can be complete without tile spacers and they are such a simple tool to use for professional results. Whether you choose small or large tile spacing, as long as they are used correctly between the tiles and removed before the adhesive sets, you will have no issues with using them. If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch.

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