Sep 27 , 2019
This is the traditional tile backer. First, felt paper is stapled to the floor and covered with expanded metal lath. Then cement, sand and water are mixed together to a crumbly consistency and floated over the lath to form a flat surface.
Given the complexity, it’s easy to see why even experienced tile setters avoid dry-pack mortar and use backer board instead when they can. But a mortar bed does have advantages. There is no cutting or fitting of boards, and a mortar bed is good for leveling and flattening uneven or out-of-level floors, which are common in old houses. If you are good with a trowel and understand how to set up and use screeds as a guide for leveling or forming the mortar, pouring a traditional mortar bed may be a good alternative to tile backer board, especially on uneven or sloping floors. Next, check out one pro’s five favorite tools for working with tile.