We will assume you’ve already laid tile on your laundry room floor. After you have cleared the wall your next choice is to place on the wall either hardy backer, cement board or leave the wall bare.
We do recommend using a tile called porcelain. The reason is simple, it was made with a.5% water absorption rate. This means the tile will stand up to water quite well. The downside to porcelain tile is how hard it is to work with. With the proper tools you can cut tile to meet your needs.
If you are going to use some type of backer board it is time to install it on the wall. Use the hardy backer screws to secure it to the wall making sure you drive the screws into the wall studs. Once this is complete now it is time to lay out your tile and get a rough idea of how it will fit.
When we build a tile wall behind the washer/dryer we always plan it out so we don’t have to cut the top row. If you want a 4 foot high wall, then tiles that are 12×12 inches make it real simple. If you choose 8×8 inch tile then you can run the height of your wall to 4 ft as well, you’ll simply use 5 tiles instead of 4. Others like to run up to 56 inch height and that is quite alright. Just don’t forget to use bull nose tile for the top row.
Once you have decided the height of your wall then you need to decide how wide you want to go. Many folks choose to run from one wall corner to the other. Others want it to go just past the washer/dryer and that is all. Again, this is personal choice.
By choosing a height that allows you to use full tiles you only have to make cuts to the tile on the horizontal tiles. A lot of people like to work out from the midpoint of the wall.
Finding the midpoint is simply measuring the height you want and divide it by 2. Then measure the width of the wall and divide by two. Once you mark those two spots you have the midpoint. Work from the middle out to lay your tile.
We typically like to work from the most exposed wall. That means we will start with full tiles and work towards the other wall, knowing that wall will have all the cut tiles on it. We can get away with this because one of the machines will hide the cut tiles.
In our neck of the woods many people are replacing their laundry floors with tile and they are building tile walls behind their wash/dryer machines. It looks great and if any water does spill it will easily clean up and run off.
Don’t forget to seal your tile and grout lines 48 hours after you set the tile.