# Different kinds of floor covering

## Different kinds of floor covering

When considering a different floor covering apart from carpet, it is useful to bear in mind the durability and maintenance involved with the different types available. Dry lay some tiles to get the effect of the design. Tiles are available in various colours, designs and sizes, for example ceramic floor tiles range from 20cm square to 33cm square.

Once you have decided on the tile, note its length and width and measure the room carefully. Measure its length and divide it by the length of one tile. Round up the number of tiles to the next whole number. Now measure the width of the room and divide that by the width of the tile, round up the number of tiles to the nearest whole number. Multiply the two whole numbers together. This will give the number of tiles required to tile the room.Try our Floor Tile Calculator page to give you a rough guide to the number required.

It is always wise to buy a few extra tiles, in case you crack or break a tile while cutting it to fit, or to keep as a spare in case of accidental damage in the future. Generally all floor tiles are laid from the centre of the room.

## If the room is square or rectangular

The centre is easy to find if the room is square or rectangular. Measure the distance half way across one wall and mark the position on the floor. Repeat the procedure on the opposite wall. Use the straight edge of a length of wood to draw a line to join the two markings. The centre of this line is the centre of the room.

You could now repeat the procedure on the other two walls, to gain similar markings to gain a right angle at the centre of the room. If the room is not completely square, use basic geometry to construct the perpendicular bisector of the line (two lines drawn at right angles to each other). Take a piece of string of approximately 9 inches and tie a pencil at one end. Hold the other end of the string firmly on the marked centre of the room. Keeping the string taut draw an arc either side of the centre on the floor drawn line. Next place the end on one of the marks and draw an arc above and below the floor drawn line. Repeat the procedure on the other mark. The two arcs should cross each other, making a cross either side of the floor marked line. Use the straight edge to draw a line through the two crosses to give the floor line at right angles to the first one.

When laying the tiles, fix battens strategically to keep the tiles parallel to the two floor drawn lines.

## If the room is irregular

Best results are gained by laying the tiles parallel to the wall containing the main room entrance. When laying the tiles, fix battens strategically to keep the tiles parallel to the wall.

## If the room has a large feature

If the room has a large feature such as a fireplace then centre the tiles in front of the feature. When laying the tiles, fix battens strategically to keep the tiles parallel to the feature.