Is there an area of your home where you think:
Ick, I wouldn’t lie down in THERE!
Unfortunately, there are still a few places in our home that you won’t see me lying down in.
This area used to be covered in muddy, dog-scented commercial carpet which we pulled up 2 months after moving in.
Rotted floor boards around the door thresholds completed the “yes-I’m-a-foreclosure” look.
Despite all their ickiness, the Rumpus Room floors are, ironically, my choice spot for photographing the very food I share on this blog:
Disclaimer: No sopapillas were harmed during the shooting of this photograph on these disgusting floors.
Yeah. That happened.
So did this (in the exact same spot):
If you’re gonna spill wood stain, best to do it before a fire right?
Mr. Smith and I discussed many options for covering up the exposed plywood, but in the end, our best option was to install vinyl peel-and-stick tile and grout the seams for a more water-tight surface.
Since this was my first time installing and grouting peel-and-stick tile, I am by no means an expert. Nevertheless, here are some helpful tips I learned….
Installing & Grouting Peel-and Stick Tile
Tip #1: Pick a sturdy tile
Peel-and-stick is an affordable flooring option, but there are some doozies out there. Examine the tile, scratch it with your fingernail. step on it–test its durability.
We purchased this neutral model from Lowe’s at $.88 per 12″x12″ tile. Overall, we spent $200 for 240 square feet of tile.
Note: For an even stronger bond, we also used vinyl flooring adhesive (about $20 a bucket).
Tip #2: Use a vinyl tile-specific grout
Since the Rumpus Room is a mudroom of sorts, we wanted the floors to be well-sealed against dirt and grime. This meant we needed to grout.
Not just any old grout will do for vinyl tile, however. Make sure you get a grout specific for vinyl tiles like this premixed tub available at Lowe’s for around $11:
Tip #3: Here are two helpful video tutorials
I admit I was a little chicken to get started. Here are two very clear and informative tutorials that got me through the project:
The second video is where I learned this quick trick to cutting the tile:
Tip #4: When grouting, wipe down tiles every 7-10 square feet
I don’t have a picture for this tip because I was too busy fussing over grout and crying in agony!
Ok, so the grout says to wipe down the tiles with a damp sponge after every 10 square feet of tile. Very good. Unfortunately, my distracted mind read that as “every 10×10 area of tile” or in other words, every 100 square feet of tile! This misstep led to a morning scrubbing hardened, crusty grout from the surface of 100 tiles. Good thing Mr. Smith was around to calm me down and help.
I cried, I cursed, and I even sweat so much that I had to shake my head like a dog every so often to get the sweat out of my eyes.
After that grueling section of the room, I made sure to wipe down after every 5-7 tiles.
MORAL OF STORY: WIPE DOWN OFTEN!!!
So…wanna see the finished product??
It took 4 years, 3 days and $250, but our Rumpus Room finally has floors that I don’t mind stretching out on.
Have YOU ever used peel-and-stick tile?
Here’s a sneak peek of the old doors ($40 on Craigslist) I’ll be transforming in my next Upgrade Update!