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Porcel-Thin’s Rapid Guide to Tile Adhesives

Are you new to tiling? Is it your first time tiling a wall or floor from scratch? Do you need some pointers on the best type of tile adhesive to buy? Here is a quick and simple guide detailing everything you need to know about tile adhesives for porcelain tiles – from selecting the correct tile adhesive for Porcel-Thin tiles to getting the right tools to make your tiling project hassle-free to the basics of applying tile adhesive for a strong, even coverage.

Gary Walsh installing Porcel-Thin marble effect porcelain tiles with Tile master rapid setting S1 rated tile adhesive

Choose the right adhesive for large-format tiles

  • For large-format porcelain tiles, which are less water absorbent, use a powdered tile adhesive that needs mixing with water, rather than the ready mixed variety. This will ensure the adhesive dries evenly and supplies a strong bond.
  • An adhesive with extra slip-resistance will reduce the chance of movement during installation. 
  • A high-quality flexible tile adhesive helps to avoid the possibility of your walls or floor cracking through stress. e.g. Tilemaster’s Standard Set Setaflex is suitable for fixing porcelain tiles, ceramic tiles and natural stone tiles to a range of surfaces from wood to concrete and can be used with underfloor heating systems too. 
  • When tiling an area subject to significant traffic or vibration, an adhesive offering maximum flexibility (S1 or greater) is advisable. 
  • Available in grey or white for a neutral finish, Standard Set Setaflex is ideal for tiling projects both inside and outside as it is resistant to water and frost. 
  • Once mixed, Standard Set Setaflex offers a fantastic range of coverage (20kg will cover 5-6m² at 3mm thin bed application) and a pot life of 3-4 hours allows you more time to get the job done. 

Tilemaster’s Standard Set Setaflex tile adhesive is recommended for use with very large format or thin porcelain wall and floor tiles

Ready your tiling tools and products 


Large book matched marble effect porcelain tile installation by Porcel-Thin using Mustang tile levelling system

How to apply tile adhesive to porcelain tiles 

  • Make sure your wall can take the weight of your chosen tiles and adhesive combined. Our porcelain tiles are thin enough to be applied over existing wall coverings. But, if you have not tiled the wall before, you could fix your tiles directly to plasterboard or fresh plaster. 
  • Make sure your chosen surface is even, clean (free from dust and grime) and dry. Be prepared to apply a primer to absorbent surfaces such as plaster in order to seal the surface, which might otherwise draw water from the tile adhesive and make it less effective. 
  • Evenly spread the adhesive on the wall or floor surface and use the Ragini trowel to create ridges in one direction to ensure maximum coverage. 
  • Evenly skim adhesive over the back of the tile using the flat edge of the Ragini trowel, back-buttering allows for the most effective coverage.
  • Apply the tile to the wall using a suction cup on large format porcelain tiles to make it easier to adjust the tile position.  We recommend leaving a grout joint of 2-4mm between Porcel-Thin tiles
  • The tiles may be held in place until dry with plastic tile spacers if required
  • Once each tile is evenly spaced and level, use a rubber grout float to tap down on the tile and release any trapped air.  
  • When using Tilemaster Standard Set Setaflex, your surfaces will take a minimum of 24 hours to dry, depending on the type of tiles used, before grouting can take place. 
  • Prepare for grouting your thin porcelain tiles


For more information on laying and fixing tiles, please see our Porcelain Tile Installation guide. For further advice, please contact us or consider employing the help of one of our approved tiling contractors

Tilemaster’s Standard Set Setaflex S1 rated fleible tile adhesive is suitable for use with Porcel-Thin porcelain tiles
The back of the tile must be completely buttered with tile adhesive to ensure maximum adhesion and support for the tile
With large and thin porcelain tiles the wall and the back of the tile must be completely covered with flexible tile adhesive
Once in place the large porcelain tile is gently worked and tamped to ensure a full contact and air bubbles are removed