For fast-tracked tiling courses in Wales then consider Henry and his team at Expert Tiling Courses UK . The two tutors there have a combined industry experience of over 30 years! That is a fair few kitchen floors tiled! They have tiling courses in Wales ranging from 1 week to 3 weeks in length. Their courses are aimed at people who want to become a self employed Tiler in the domestic industry.
Expert Tiling Courses UK are based in Newport in South Wales. They run tiling courses in Wales at their dedicated training centre which is conveniently located near J28 of the M4. Their centre has plenty of free parking and there are even a few hotels nearby that you can stay at. Expert Tiling Courses UK will even help you book one! Now that’s service!
Let’s talk about Tiling Courses and Tiling Training. To see what they involve and what type of people might be booking on some right now.
But first. A bit about me. I’m Dan. I own the forum, and much bigger forums in the construction industry, and a lot of blogs, some online stores, some ebay stores, some amazon stores, and loads of automotive websites, forums and shops too.
I’ve just had COVID. Had the ‘vid (as Kevin Hart would say – any other Netflixers about? – comment below lol)
We’ve all had a little bit more time on our hands than what we’re used to. Options to staying at home and doing sweet FA have included; work furloughing you, your employer telling you to work from home because Borris has said so, self-isolating because somebody you’ve been in contact with has tested positive. Or even worse. In fact THE worse one out the lot.
Catching bloody COVID-19 and needing to either stay in bored (if you’re lucky) or stay in feeling like shyte if you’re not. I won’t even mention hospital. Need to avoid talking about those right now.
Well. Some of you guys reading this will already be in the tile industry in some form. Probable a tiler, but perhaps tile shop staff, maybe tile or adhesive manufacturer staff, and have been browsing around online and ended up on one of our websites which ultimately will be linked to one of our other websites and then another and then BOOM. You’re here reading this.
It’s now 23:38 and I’ve done a hard days graft setting up a new website (more on that later – in another blog, not in this one) and I thought hmmmm, I wonder how many people are also still up. And in fact, I wonder how many people are always still up – losing sleeping patterns, not being used to being at home perhaps, and maybe, just a few of those, are considering career changes? Maybe.
If I was looking for Tiling Courses, where would I look right now?
Well. I’d start off with our forum sponsors, both current and past sponsors. So Able Skills for the south, Construction Skills College for the midlands, and UK Tiling Training up north. There are some others, but training centres seem to come and go quite easy so be careful booking a newish one, or one that appears to have dozens of locations (they often don’t).
How Far Can You Travel – I Mean Physically – And still have a life on weekends, and still get to the training centre again every monday morning?
Theory here is that it’s worth travelling to a good tiling course and tiling training centre. Especially if you’re doing a week-long one. Some can even be four weeks long and you drive home friday, come back monday morning. So stop over somewhere close by Mon, Tue, Wed, Thur night. They all usually have B&B’s nearby that they recommend. Just somewhere to get your head down, nice breakfast, nothing special. But then of course there are the chains that offer clean rooms for a slightly dearer price. But the breakfast might suck, or be on top of the room price, or be too late for when you want to set off to the training centre each day. So look out for that.
So it’s worth travelling to a good tiling course, but not travelling too far. As the Friday night drive home and Monday very early morning start to drive back can be, what, two hours, maybe three tops. But not more than that surely.
So one down south, one in the midlands, and one up north – between the three they always covered 90% of the country, and 98% of the people in Great Britain.
We did recommend a Welsh firm and a Scottish firm. But they either shut down or sold out to some bigger firm who just wanted their customer list or something. Not sure.
Able Skills Tiling Courses
Able Skills do multiple course types. I’d usually avoid this type of training centre. They’re clearly setup to spread the love of all trades to all people. So make some good money doing it. It makes you wonder at what point do they just chase the coin and ignore the teaching quality. But time and time again we had feedback about Tiling Courses and their tiling teachers, who have stuck with them for years and are good guys, so I can only vouch for their tiling courses. Not their plumbing ones and all the other ones. Just tiling courses.
But they’re good. It seems they’re really really good. Which is nice.
Construction Skills College Limited Tiling Courses
Construction Skills College Limited (they’re not an official College they’re privately owned by a lovely bloke named Dave Hare). I have always recommended these for the midlands.
Their website name is TradeTeacher.co.uk if you’ve seen it around. These do a bunch of courses again, similar to Able Skills, but they too have focused on keeping the good teachers they have on board and concentrate on keeping them at the training centre.
Tiling Courses from UK Tiling Training / Formerly North East Tiling Training. Been around Decades, like our forum has
UK Pro Tiling Training, by Darren Yorke, who has only done Tiling Courses and stuck to it, in all this time. His courses are second to none. They have loads of good feedback. And they’re the only one out of the three that have sponsored our forum for years, like 16 years or something.
These have LOADS of brilliant feedback on the forum. Loads of separate threads, but one massive long one too.
If I was stuck during lockdown thinking of a career change that allowed me to work outside, be my own boss, work a different house every week, have the ability to make money on buying tiles at trade price and selling them to customers for retail. Then also taking the money for the installation of the tiles too. And the odd time installing electric underfloor heating (dead easy – I’ll do a blog on that too soon). Then I’d consider the three guys mentioned in this blog.
Personally, I’d have to go with UK Tiling Training, as those guys still sponsor the forum. But I actually live in the same county as Construction Skills one. So if they sponsored me, that’d be the easiest and I wouldn’t need to stay over anywhere either. Could come home each night to my wife and daughter.
That all said, I can tile, despite what you might read on some forums that are competitors to mine lol. And I actually even used to teach tiling, a Professional-ITT.com under Paul Riley, who setup the Topps Tiles Fixing Division, and setup BAL’s own Tiling Training Centre.
So I’m actually pretty bloody good.
I just hate tiling now! – I even paid Phil Hobson (RIP) to come do all my own tiling, and even for my ex-wifes parents (paid for by me as they asked me to do it) so that I didn’t have to buy any of the tools again. If I did, I get friends and family thinking I can tile their houses FOC. And I can’t I tell you. I bloody can’t.
We did another blog on tiling courses a bit ago. But this one’s better for sure. Checkout the old one here:-
Which should I use for tiling? PVA vs Primers for Tiling on Walls.
A common problem in the tile industry is the old PVA vs Primers one.
People, and certainly plasterers (who are murder for it) tend to think and use PVA glue as a primer when tiling walls. If you’re tiling over plaster or plasterboard and wish to separate the tile adhesive (which may be cement-based) from the plaster (which causes issues; cement and plaster don’t mix) then you can’t use PVA to do that.
Here is the problem. PVA is water-based so will break back down with water, and all tile adhesive will involve water. It’s as simple as that.
A primer will reduce porosity of the substrate you’re tiling to. But you need to use an actual primer, not PVA glue. This then prevents water from being drawn out of the tile adhesive quickly as it cures, which in turn increases adhesion strength of the adhesive, and solidifies your tile to the substrate or surface you’re tiling to.
PVA glue does NOT use acrylic polymers. So the water-based glue should be thrown out rather than using for tiling.
All tile adhesive manufacturers will make a primer that’s compatible with their adhesive ranges. And as much thought should be given to this as you give to the choice of tile adhesive.
You wouldn’t want to spend £1,000 on tiles, £300 on adhesives and grout, and then pay £5 for PVA and your tiles fall off, or £50 on proper primer and they stay on.
It’s not worth the headache of risking your tiles falling off. Especially when you’re in the room you’re always naked in, the bathroom or shower-room. Sharp tile glaze or porcelain tile cut edges will break skin and could chop off your wiggly pale bits.
But then if it’s commercial they’ll get paid per meter as that’s what the company employing them will request in most cases.
Then if it’s a small job, perhaps a day rate. And the day rates seem to change massively depending on how busy the tiler is, where they’re based, how much competition there is in the area, and what tiles are being used etc.
You can post your job to the forum here. It’s free of charge. We don’t charge you or the tiler anything at all for this service. There’s no commission to be paid like with some ‘rate my builder’ and ‘check my builder’ websites.
You can research the tilers who reply to your request via the forum. You can see their profiles, how much activity they’ve had on the forum, which sort of jobs they’ve done in the past, how knowledgeable they are by reading their tiling advice threads etc.
Recent tilers that have created listings on the forum
We are looking for a reliable and competent tiler to carry out our bathroom tiling works. We are looking for someone with attention to detail and great customer service skills. We carry out 15-20 bathrooms a year many with full tilling. The spec of these bathrooms can vary but many of them are high end […]
Hi all. We have two walk in showers. Based in Elstree Hertfordshire / North London. Both need to take old grout out and re-grout with appropriate Mapei epoxy grout. Also, would need both drains sealed and tanked (will explain when we speak) If you reach the area and have Epoxy grouting experience please get in […]
Hello, I am trying to source Travertine tiles to match the current ones in my bathroom. In essence I bought a flat and need to install new shower/ sink etc. The previous homeowner kindly left us 6 tiles but apparently I need a few more to complete the project. The previous homeowner also informed me […]
Durham Tiling is a residential and commercial tiling contractor specialising in the fitting of ceramic, porcelain, marble, stone and mosaic tiles. We also provide a full bathroom fitting service. We are based in Durham, in the North East of England and have over 20 years of experience in the trade. We provide a professional and […]
David Howe is a professional tiler in Newton Aycliffe, who specialises in all natural stone tiles, ceramics, porcelains and all types of tiling work for both walls and floors. Though the service doesn’t stop there! David offers a wider range of services including underfloor heating installation, wetrooms, tanking and mosaic tiling for walls, floors or […]
EXPERIENCED TILER All About Building is a small family owned and operated business. We work all across the Macomb County Area, and in many different trade fields. We have a ton of incoming leads for upcoming projects, and we are looking for experienced tile layer to join our team, and help up keep up with […]
Good morning all. I hope you are well. I am in need of a tiler ASAP after having a horrendous experience with a couple of tilers. One just said said he was coming and kept calling us saying he was coming but just never showed up. This other guy was a totally different kettle of […]
TilersForums.com has hosted an annual ‘most used tile adhesive brand’ poll for each year from 2007 to 2019, bar 2014 for some reason. We’ve seen some brands come and go in that time. Some changed positions massively, some stayed pretty much the same. There’s a table below showing you which tile adhesive brands were most used each year.
Which tile adhesive brand has won the most?
Mapei is the tile adhesive brand that has won the poll the most. They won in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, and then 2019.
Is this the most used tile adhesive for both professional tilers and DIY tilers?
Well, the forum mostly has professional wall and floor tilers registered. There are DIY tilers included in the totals but the percentage will always be weighted towards professionals. The names of the professionals over the years have mostly been the same, but the DIY tilers will come and go over time.
Which is the most used tile adhesive for 2020?
We’re yet to run this poll. We’ll no doubt blog about it once it’s up and running, and we’ll let members of the forum know about it.
How do I vote on this years tile adhesive poll?
If you’re not registered, head over to the forum and register for free to get involved in the next adhesive poll. We’ll find out together which is the most used tile adhesive brand of 2020.
Is the ‘most used adhesive brand’ different from the ‘best tile adhesive’ to use when tiling?
It can be. The most used literally means we’ve asked people to tell us which adhesive they used most. NOT which adhesive they would have preferred to have used, or they thought was the best for the type of tiling they did mostly in a said year.
If a tile shop local to them does one brand, and they get a lot of customers from that shop, then that could be different to the brand they prefer to use if they have the choice themselves.
What are the adhesive classifications?
Adhesive classifications help specifiers and tilers specify which adhesive is required for a job, depending on the substrate (surface to be tiled) and the tile type that’s going to be used. – C; Cementitious – Whether C1 (cementitious) or C2 (improved cementitious) – Both powder adhesives. Both you mix with only water. – D; Dispersion – Either D1 (dispersion of the ‘standard’ strength) or D2 (improved strength dispersion adhesive) classifications. Both are ready-mixed adhesives in a tub. Both cure / set by the water evaporating out of the adhesive. Not recommended for large wall tiles or floors. – E; Extended open time – E classification adhesive will not start to cure too quickly when spread with a trowel on the substrate. Handy for slower DIY tilers or perhaps commercial tiling jobs with large areas to tile. – F; Fast setting – so the opposite of classification E classification, F classification is for fast-setting adhesives. Perfect for tiling jobs that need completing quickly. Or perhaps tiling in low temperatures where C or D classified adhesives wont set quick enough. – S; Improved flexibility – S classification adhesive has additives in it that make it flexible. S1 classification is for standard flexible adhesive, and S2 classification is for ultra-flexible adhesive. These are used when tiling to substrates that expand and retract, like plywood for example, or perhaps when using underfloor heating, whether electric under the tiles, or water under the substrate. – T; Reduced Slip – T classification is for reduced slip tile adhesives. Large tiles require it, heavy tiles require it. Tiling walls with no tile supports of any type is a lot easier when using T classified adhesive.
Ready-mixed (dispersion) or powder, which one do I need?
In nearly all cases when tiling a complete floor or wall, powder adhesive that cures chemically is favoured by most tilers. Whether DIY or professional. But in some cases, like when a small amount of tiles are being used, or perhaps when DIY aren’t too comfortable mixing their own adhesive, or either pro or DIY wish to work slowly and keep putting the lid back on the adhesive, then dispersion (so ready-mixed) is the way to go.
Most used Tile Adhesive brands from 2007 – 2019 / Source: TilersForums.com
How does the Tile Adhesive poll work?
TilersForums.com has held the adhesive poll each year. As it comes to the end of each year we write down all the adhesive brands mentioned in the forum, then create a poll.
We then email out the poll so that members can come and vote. They tend to vote for the brand they used most that year, rather than the brand they preferred. Which is mostly the same, but not always.
Due to their most local tile shop perhaps stocking a brand that wouldn’t be their first choice, but is fine, they will vote for the one they used most, so the one from their most local tile shop perhaps.
Another similar reason for voting for the most used tile adhesive brand rather than their preferred or most trusted adhesive and grout brand is perhaps due to their customers finding the tiles before the tiler, and then the tile shop that the customer found their tiles in has recommended an adhesive brand and the customer has bought and paid for the adhesives already.
What are the names of some of the adhesive manufacturers?
The names of some of the adhesive manufacturers over the years include (but are not limited to):-
Some of the other names might be related to home-brands in tile shops. So there’s a Topps Adhesive and perhaps even a B&Q home-brand, but they’ll nearly always be manufactured by existing adhesive companies and perhaps even the same as their named brands, but with re-branded packaging.
Dispersion adhesive cures by evaporation. So this is ready mixed in a tub upto 15kg (10ltr) and you can keep putting the lid back on the adhesive during tiling to slow the setting process down to give you enough time to do a wall a day for example.
Powder adhesive cures chemically once water is added. This will be a powder you mix with water, or powder you mix with an additive (to make it very flexible). Once it’s mixed it starts to cure.
So you tend to need to set out for tiling before mixing, make sure you’re ready to use the whole batch, and don’t ever mix more powder or water into the adhesive. You’ll need to throw a slightly cured adhesive away and mix fresh rather than do that.
The Tile Association (TTA) was set up in January 2000 when a combination of Tiling bodies came together to set up the Association.
Since it was formed twenty years ago it has doubled in size and now has around 1000 members which are tilers, suppliers, shops and more. It is an Association for the whole tiling industry not just tilers themselves.
The headquarters of The Tile Association are in Stone, Staffordshire and the aim of it is to provide a well qualified and very skilled workforce across the tile industry from tilers to retailers and everyone in between. Many of the original members of the TTA board helped to establish the British Standards in tiling and now the TTA members themselves follow those standards.
How Can The Tile Association Help Me?
I am a Tiler.
If you are a tiler then joining the TTA might be something you wish to consider. If you join them there is a membership fee and you will be featured on their directory. You will also have access to seminars and business advice. Their advice is impartial, however you can join TilersForums.com for free and get the same advice from over 6000 tilers and maybe even make a new friend or two.
I want tiling work doing.
If you or your business need some tiling work doing in your home, office or leisure facility then The Tile Association can also help you too. The TTA has a directory which you can use to find a Tiler that provides the services that you need – whether it is a larger format tiler, mosaic tiler, home tiler and more. Just search the location you are in and Tilers will show up with the skills they have and their contact details.
You can also post on TilersForums.com that you are looking for a tiler and the job you need doing too.
NVQ Level 2 in Wall and Floor Tiling is the standard in Tiling Courses. Below are a few common questions and answers regarding the NVQ in Tiling.
Can I find the NVQ Level 2 in Wall and Floor Tiling at my local College?
Probably not no. But it is worth trying. There is no actual list of tiling courses at colleges, whether NVQ or not. But check your local college, but also check independent training centres too.
Can I get the NVQ Level 2 in Wall and Floor Tiling via OSAT (On Site Assessment Training)?
Yes, if you’re already working as a wall and floor tiler, or have a placement with a tiling company, then you can use your tiling work to complete your NVQ files to an NVQ Assessors standard, and then complete your NVQ that way.
Do I need an NVQ to actually tile in customers houses?
No, not at all. Domestic tiling doesn’t require you to have an NVQ in Tiling. You can actually just print off business cards and call yourself a tiler with no formal experience or training. (Which is a problem for sure!) But that isn’t advised.
Make sure you complete some form of training because trading standards can still come knocking if you’re carrying out poor unsafe works in the domestic setting.
Should I just look for a local tiling course instead of looking for an NVQ?
Most do. You can attend short courses with independent training centres who show you how to tile to a good standard, show you some business advice, marketing advice, get you some discounts on your first tools and that kind of thing. Then go practice on your own home and friends and family. Then advertise as a tiler, take all calls no matter what the jobs, but then the jobs that are too big for you, pass onto another tiler providing you can labour for them and gain some tiling skills. This relationship would work dividends down the line when you need two tilers on a job one day.
At that point could I gain an NVQ?
Doing it this way you’d be able to go via the OSAT route. You’d just need an assessor to come out and assess you periodically to complete your tiling portfolio.
Pay on credit card where you need to make payments before you attend.
Speak to previous course trainees to see if it worked for them and whether they managed to actually get into the trade via the same route you did.
Be wary when a ‘College’ or training centre has a sales push on you. Those won’t be legitimate training centres. Legitimate training centres don’t force you to take out finance for their training, don’t make you sign lengthy contracts, and don’t use salesmen on commission.
Tiling Courses can be hard to find locally. Especially well established ones that are tiling-only courses rather than training centres that run all sorts of training courses such as plumbing courses and electrical courses too. Not that all those who run other courses are poor when it comes to running only tiling ones. Some have very established tiling training teachers and have plenty of honest legitimate feedback online. But others over the years have gotten too big too quickly and gone bump after they have taken honest money from trainees that are yet to start any of their course.
We often say make sure that you go visit as many training centre’s as you can, this way you will find out what they look like, get a feel for whether you’re having a sales-type push on you, and even if you can speak to previous course trainees to see what their view of the training centre is.
Established Tiling Courses Feedback and Reviews
TilersForums.co.uk started in 2006, and a massive advantage to that is we have a lot of training centre feedback over the years and you can see how long some of them have been running and what their past course attendees have said about them.
Then of course years on, some are running quite decent tiling companies and are still forum members, so you can see which ones worked out for that individual person.
Some Tiling Courses Reviews and Discussion from TilersForums.com
Note that the following forum discussion is just that, open discussion. Don’t take it all as fact. Always do your own research into tiling courses whether independent courses or college tiling courses!
Hello Everyone new to the forum. I have done a fair few DIY tiling jobs ( bathroom floor, kitchen splash back, En suite ) i will post photos of each of these jobs. i want to do a tiling course i fancy the 13 day UK pro tiling training course, anyone been on this course? or know anyone that has? Thanks Jack
Hi all. I’m booked on a well known tiling course next month but after speaking to a few of their students I’m debating cancelling. They’ve told me the course is pretty good but no floor tiles are laid. They only briefly talk you through it. Surely you need some hands on work to understand it properly. It’s put me off as it’s advertised as a wall and floor tiling course. Any thoughts appreciated […]
Hello tilers, I have just joined the forum, but I’ve been having a snoop for the last 6 months or so admiring the work and expert advice wondering if I could try my hand at it some day! Pleased so say I’ll be attending the UK Pro Tiling Training Centre at the start of next month to do the 13 day course (is anyone else going around the same time?) which will hopefully […]
Hi i thought i should leave some feed back regarding north east tiling in tyne and wear as i think credit is due Darren and Tracey run a pretty sleek operation there and are friendly and helpful. the after service in second to none – you can alway ring up and ask a question. they can't provide you with experience that has to be earned but they will give you all the knowledge […]
If you've been on any of the Goldtrowel Tiling Courses then please leave feedback and reviews in this thread. Goldtrowel is the UKs No.1 NVQ Centre for Tiling Courses. Our wall and floor tiling courses are designed to give you a good understanding in all areas of tiling whether you are a total beginner or someone who has some knowledge of tiling. It is our responsibility to instill confidence in all that you […]
Hi, I am trained as a Bricklayer and have been doing this for about 14 years, I am now looking for a change of career and thinking about tiling. Ideally I would keep doing the bricklaying during the week and start off doing tiling at the weekend until I built up my business enough that I could give up the bricklaying. I am looking to find out what is the best tiling course […]
Just completed my 4 week course at the Tiler Training School (which actually crept into 5!) and wanted to give as much positive feedback as I could! What a huge learning curve and I'm now just getting organised to start my own business in the area. So much information and advice given in the time period that my head was spinning for most of it! But Anthony and Stuart were extremely patient and […]
Tiling NVQ Level 2 Wall and Floor Tiling
If you’re looking for a Tiling NVQ, which is called the NVQ Level 2 in Wall and Floor Tiling, then you’ll need to either look for a local college course that runs the Tiling NVQ. Or look for an independent training centre that can help build your personal tiling portfolio, and then help with getting you some onsite assessment via the OSAT route. (more info needed)
Plumbing Courses Top Tips
Plumbing NVQ Courses can be found at local colleges and within private plumbing training centres. But you could do with checking out these plumbing course tips before booking with just anybody.
Electrical Courses Top Tips
Electricians NVQ Courses aren’t hard to find, but good quality courses can be. If you’re looking for an Electrical NVQ of any type, then please do checkout our electricians blog.
UK Tiling Forum is for Professional and DIY Wall and Floor Tilers in the UK. Our tiling forum is more than just an advice website with a one-off answer to a one-off tiling question.
Our UK Tiling Forum is a community that provides tiling education and tiling courses to those who are in need of learning how to tile properly to a professional tiling standard.
Who’s UK Tiling Forum Rocks?
Our UK Tiling Forum rocks.
TilersForums.com is the World’s largest wall and floor tiling advice community. Whether a Tiling Forum Facebook Community Group or Page, a Twitter Tiling Forum Account, a Google Places Tiling Forum Page; TilersForums.com is still number one.
Started in 2006 TilersForums.co.uk was not the first tiling forum online. The founder actually created another website, TileForums.com, first. That website was created as part of a much wider business model whereby trainee wall and floor tilers who paid to learn how to tile would visit the forum after attending the course to ask and answer tiling questions.
Once one tiling question was answered, all other tiling questions of the same nature would be directed to the forum thread, therefore the answer, and the phone calls to the tiling training centre would minimise.
How One Tiling Training Centre Became A Whole Tile Industry After A Few Months, Not Years
Before a Wall and Floor Tiler could get advice for free online one would have few options. One could register to a local college tiling courses, and hope a placement became available that suited ones time schedule.
Often, tiling courses were provided during 9-5 hours at best, 9-3 (school hours) otherwise. And during the working week, so Monday to Friday.
Independent Tiling Training Centres Teaching Independent Tiling Courses to Trainee Wall and Floor Tilers
There becomes the issue.
A person who is already in work, therefore work-driven, is unable to carry out training within their working schedule.
A training centre was required that fitted within that model.
This soon became a bit of a standard.
The first independent tiling training centre that wasn’t part of an adhesive manufacturer was setup by the guy who set up BAL’s training centre many years prior.
I happened to work for the guy as a tiler at the time and he explained that this training centre thing might be viable. I built a website for it that ranked well. We built the centre in units. And took course bookings for a weekly fee. About 16 tilers per course.
A massive industry was then made through very similar structures and they all do well. People need these courses. And forums are good places for the trainees to attend after the courses.