I was skeptical about the idea of putting a floating tile floor over a vinyl floor, but between the locking tabs, the rubber based support grids, and the latex grout, I believe this floor is as solid as any tile floor laid in the conventional manner with thin set/mastic. I was especially pleased to not have to mix the thin set/mastic, and the floor still feels very solid! I was impressed with the ease of the process, and my wife and I were both especially pleased with the end result! In fact, we were so pleased that we also decided to install Snapstone in our Master Bathroom.
Name: Al H.
City: Sun Prairie
Tile Color: Beige
Grout Color: Mushroom
Pattern Type: Straight
Area of Installation: Laundry Room, Foyer, Master Bedroom
Underlying Sub-floor: Vinyl & Plywood
Square Footage: 160 sf
Tile Installation Experience: Had assisted a friend on a small bathroom project once several years prior to this job, but had never laid tile by myself. I did this job completely by myself.
Tips for Installation: Wear tight fitting protective gloves to prevent cuts to hands - plastic base can be sharp after cutting - rubber palms and fingers will help keep your hands dry while cutting the tile with the wet saw. Wet Saw works great for cutting straight lines. Use diamond blade roto zip, or diamond blade angle grinder for cutting curves and holes - follow instructions on roto zip diamond blade instructions to ensure you don't burn up your diamond blade prematurely - instructions recommend cutting at an angle and rotating tool. Be sure to clean tile thoroughly while grouting. Residue left on the tile will harden, but can be cleaned up with a product called "Crudcutter".
Easiest Part: Cutting tiles and snapping them in place. The locking tabs help maintain straight lines, but you still have to keep an eye on the alignment as you continue to tap the tiles into the locked position. You can move them out of alignment as you lock them into place if you're not careful. If room permits, kneel on the tiles laying in the opposite direction that you are tapping. Your body weight will help keep them in place as you tap them into place.
Most Challenging Part: Getting just the right amount of space with your end tiles between the tile and the wall or cabinet so that you can still lock them into place, but hopefully won't have too much space that you have to use quarter-round shoe with your baseboard trim.
Length of Installation: I didn't really keep close track of the time, but I would estimate it took me approximately 7-8 hours to cut and lay the tile, and another 1.5 hours to grout it. I was pretty slow because of my lack of experience, and I was also very slow and meticul