Tile installation expertise Neuse Tile Service

Tile installation expertise Neuse Tile Service

Category Archives: Tile installation expertise

Why use tile?

We were recently interviewed by NC Homes magazine. and we thought wed share our responses with you as a series of blog entries.

Tile is an extremely practical material and a designer favorite because of its many possibilities. We think tile is great because its:

-Durable – Tile is among the longest lasting flooring materials. When you consider the length of time that tile will last versus the initial cost of installation, tile is the least expensive flooring material available.

-Easy to maintain – Most tiles can be cleaned with warm water and a damp mop. No harsh chemicals or complicated cleaning regimen are needed to keep tile looking beautiful. A recent industry study indicated that tile is the least expensive, long-term option when considering maintenance and the long life of tile.

-Beautiful & versatile – The options in tile are incredibly varied, and there is something to suit every person’s design style. Popular looks include rectangular or plank tiles, larger tiles (bigger than 15”), wood-look tiles, and textured tiles. The introduction of high-resolution printing on tile makes it possible to replicate the appearance of stone, fabric, wood, and cement.

-Inert – Tile is made from naturally occurring materials, and emits no toxic odors or Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). Most of the materials used to set tile today also incorporate recycled materials and produce no VOCs.

-Healthy – When tile is installed properly. it provides a safe, clean, and beautiful space for many years. Because tile is inert, it does not contribute to indoor air pollution, and you won’t have to use harmful cleaning chemicals to keep it looking clean and beautiful.

Dedicated to customers and quality work- is that enough?

50 years! Many things have changed in our world since Neuse Tile started in 1964, but our dedication to customers and to jobs done right has not. It may seem silly and ‘old fashioned,’ but we really think it matters that we treat customers with respect and provide them quality, long-lasting installations.

We don’t offer flashy deals or gimmicks, we just provide a dependable service at a fair price. This month that hasn’t been enough to bring in many customers, so we thought we’d use this blog to tell you a little more about ourselves.

We are a second-generation, family-owned company. We got into this because it was the ‘family thing,’ but we’ve stayed in it because we think you should be able to get quality work done right the first time. We specialize in tile and stone installations because they are unique, technically challenging, and complicated enough to require our full attention. We stand behind our work and up-front give you complete pricing that includes the tile, setting materials, and labor, as well as our extended warranty service. Surprise “change orders” are not our style.

Our superintendent and president closely monitor our installers to ensure the quality of the work, and most of our team members have been with us for more than 10 years. We are passionate about correct tile installations and want you to be confident that your project will last.

Tile installation is a craft and an art, but it has also become an increasingly complex industry with ever-evolving techniques and scientifically advanced materials. We are unique in our area in that we are active members of our national trade organizations and have Ceramic Tile Education Foundation certified installers on staff. We are the only National Tile Contractors Association Five-Star residential contractor in the state. Hopefully, those credentials provide reassurance that we have the knowledge needed to do your installation properly and run our business professionally.

We also offer a lifetime warranty on the underlayment product we use as well as a 25-year system warranty through one of our mortar manufacturers. Because of our longevity in the tile industry, we’re usually able to purchase our quality installation products at volume discounts, and we pass those on to you.

Thanks for taking the time to learn a bit more about us. We realize you have a choice in tile contractors, and hope that you will choose us to create your beautiful and long-lasting installation. We’d like to be here to serve you for another 50 years!

Qualified to talk tile in NJ & at home

Sometimes it takes an out-of-town audience to fully appreciate our hometown know-how. That was certainly the case for our own Nyle Wadford when he recently traveled to Dayton, NJ, to present a large-format tile seminar to an architectural and design community.

3rd from left, Wadford presented NTCA seminar.

The local American Olean & Marazzi USA distributor wanted a special guest to introduce their services to an important client base, and they asked Wadford to present an NTCA seminar on large tiles and participate in a discussion about qualified labor. The hosts and audience said the seminar was informative and truly helpful, and Nyle was glad to participate.

As a long-time tile contractor and Chairman of the Board of the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), Nyle is absolutely passionate about correct tile installations whether in NC or NJ he just loves talking tile!

The NTCA is an invaluable association for our industry, and, as a Five-Star Contractor. Neuse Tile is able to present its seminars for continuing education credits to the Architectural and Design communities. As NTCAs 2012 Tile Person of the Year, Nyle is also quite well-known and respected by his peers in the industry (and throughout the country).

Neuse Tile has no plans to install tile in New Jersey, but the visit is helping open doors for the NTCA and furthering discussions about proper tile installations, so Nyle sees it as a worthwhile investment of time. And, sometimes its also nice to get that out-of-town recognition as well.

Nyle is also the Vice Chairman of both the NTCA Technical Committee and the ANSI A108 Committee. Great job, Nyle!

Tile upside down, but not backwards

Neuse Tile is all about customer satisfaction, and weve often laughingly said, well install tile upside down and backwards if thats what the customer wants, but, with this story, well have to modify that when it comes to glass tile.

An out-of-state relative hired a local contractor to renovate their master bathroom. They went to their home show, interviewed prospective contractors, reviewed their references, and selected one that gave them great confidence. We went up to visit, gave them some tips on selecting the tile and some things to look for as the process moved along.

The first text message asking about the adhesive being used in the shower was a little concerning, but not all that unusual. We gave some online references and told him to hold firm with his general contractor that he expected the tile subcontractor to adhere to industry standards.

However, the text which said we were awakened at 2 a.m. by the sound of falling tiles was startling. When we got on the phone and he began to describe the issues with his glass accent liner, we realized the tile setter who had been subcontracted to do the work had installed the glass backwards. Sometimes glass tiles are what we call paper-faced meaning the factory rolls an adhesive paper over the front of the tile sheets (usually mosaics) before boxing and shipping. This keeps the individual pieces aligned (for the most part). The intent is for the exposed glass tiles (which sometimes have small holes in them to absorb some of the setting material) to be laid into the troweled mortar and then the adhesive paper peeled off before grouting. However, this tile guy had laid the paper-side of the sheet into the mortar and gone home for the day. As the mortar dried and the tiles broke free from the adhesive paper, the small glass mosaics dropped off one-by-one. Thus, glass tiles hitting a newly tiled shower floor at 2 a.m.

This was the last straw for our relative, and he insisted the contractor hire a different tile installer and re-do the job. When the new and more qualified- tile installer came, he determined that the whole shower had to come out and be started over. The accent tiles were obviously an issue, but the shower pan had been sloped by doubling up sheets of backerboard- clearly not an industry-approved method!

After 9 weeks, our relatives now have a great, new master bath and further appreciation for all the technical know-how that goes into our everyday work. And, weve contacted our national association to see if they can do something about getting more certified tile contractors in that part of his state.

In the Triangle area, you are fortunate to have some well-qualified tile contractors to choose from. Know whats under your tile hire a professional and make sure your tile is installed right side out!

Thankful for our tile family!

As we celebrate this season of thanks, we’d like to send a special ‘Thank You’ to our customers and our work family! The past few years have been tough for all of us in the construction industry, and we are very appreciative of the work we’ve been privileged to perform and of those who have been part of our team.

We thank our customers for trusting us with your home and business improvements we are honored to have provided tile installations and service that will stand the test of time. The tile products we use are of the highest quality, and we are constantly impressed as manufacturers improve and advance their technology. But tile installation remains an artisan craft that, as far as we can see, will always require the human touch. We are incredibly proud of the skilled craftsmen who produce work as beautiful (and technically sound) as any in the industry.

Neuse Tile Team

Those artisans are the ones you will most often encounter on the jobsite, but equally important is the small, but essential, team of talented and knowledgeable office and supervisory staff that stand behind them. Our work family has been together for 10-15 years, and, as we’ve persevered through these challenging times, we’ve come to really appreciate our diverse skill sets and our united passion for excellence.

The people behind every estimate, every order, every phone call, and every piece of tile are our company’s greatest asset, and we want to say ‘Thank You’ for all the hours, the hard work, the patience, and the perseverance you’ve provided.

We give special recognition to two team members who are concluding their time with Neuse Tile. Leigh, you’ve been that reassuring voice for so many who’ve needed details about their installation schedule or some of your expert cleaning advice, and Scott, your passion for details and drive to get the job done are legendary on commercial construction sites. We will greatly miss you both! You have been a very important part of the Neuse Tile story, and, though we know the folks taking your roles are extremely capable, we want you to know that your contribution here will always be appreciated and remembered.

Tile installation expertise Neuse Tile Service

For you and all those who have kept Neuse Tile going, we are grateful. Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and your families!

Circular project with a straight line to quality installation

The precision cuts of four different sized and colored tiles in concentric circles was certainly challenging for our certified installers, but it was the know-how of our staff and the capabilities of TEC’s products that set them up for a successful installation.

Making circles from square tiles takes math and artistry.

Our experience with the contractors team and the architect on this project were great, and the architect even sent an e-mail saying, Pass along to the tile installer that the floor tile in the lobby is some of the best work I’ve seen in a while. The circles are very close to perfect. The arches are cut in nicely, the joints are very good. It’s just a good, neat job.

We appreciate this high praise from an architect, and are glad that we, and he, can be sure the products and workmanship underneath this detailed work is as good as what is seen on the surface. Thanks, TEC, for the helpfulness and technical capabilities of your staff and products!

Check out the details about this project from our recent award-winning entry for TECs Imagine Achieve contest :

We were asked to participate on a local expansion project because the general contractor knew it would be a specialty installation. The client and architect’s specifications required intricate layout, precision cuts, multiple tile sizes and colors, and working within the parameters of a very controlled site environment.

As is usually the case, our team was involved in multiple communications and meetings long before the tile installation began. The bathroom installations were to be wall-tile only, and the floors were scheduled to receive an epoxy coating. However, the epoxy contractor had no idea how to create the slope to the drains nor how to waterproof the installations. Since bathrooms are our area of expertise, we suggested using TECs Hydraflex waterproofing membrane and helped resolve the issue for everyone.

Our next challenge was in the 4000-square-foot lobby, cafeteria and kitchen areas. Because of the high-PSI requirements for the concrete on the plant floor, all the concrete on the project was poured to that specification, including the lobby and kitchen areas. The concrete had been ‘wet-cured’ which produced an extremely hard and impervious surface on which we were to bond our tile flooring. The welded sheet vinyl contractor on the project had tried to shot-blast the surface of the concrete, but had absolutely no success. Our superintendent did a water-penetration test on the lobby concrete and knew there would be issues in achieving proper bonding when the tile was installed.

We called the technical support staff of TEC products and asked if their new Multi-Purpose primer could be used to rectify the problem. They provided assurances and written warranty explanations that helped convince the general contractor that the proper use of TECs primer over this substrate would provide the best possible solution. This process would also require less labor, time and materials than the usually prescribed subfloor treatments of shot-blasting or scarification, and would also allow the project to stay within its already tight construction schedule.

We proceeded with installation of the lobby, cafeteria and kitchen tile with TEC Three-in-One mortar and Accucolor grout. (These TEC products had been in our original submittal package due to the project’s high visibility and challenging installation specifications.) The general contractor was very comfortable with these products and helped convince the architect and owner that TEC products would give them the long-lasting installation performance they wanted. Excellent materials combined with the know-how of your local Five-Star Tile Installation Contractor once again achieved great results!

Tile trade from start to finish

Tile is a finish trade (meaning no one comes behind us and covers our work). Framers, electricians, plumbers, and even drywall contractors, have at least some of their work covered over by the trades that come after them.  This doesnt make their work less important or expert, of course, but it does mean that small miscalculations by their workers can be covered over by the craftsmen who come later.

Tile has no such luxury. Our work is going to be there for you to evaluate every time you take a shower, sweep your floor, or clean behind your stove. And the material we work with is pretty unforgiving. Tile doesnt bend, adjust or flex to mask a corner thats out of line or a slight bump in the underlayment. Therefore, tile installers have to be exacting and precise. The good ones are pretty adamant about things being flat before they lay one piece!

It was interesting recently to watch two brothers-in-law working together on a home improvement for the family. Both are highly skilled and exacting in their trades one a carpenter, and one a tile installer.  However, the slight adjustments that the carpenter is used to making with his final trim were driving the tile guy crazy. Whereas the wood guy knew that his final product offered a little bit of flex and adaptability; the tile guy is accustomed to working with an unforgiving and inflexible end product. Therefore, their approaches to the sub-surface work they were doing were completely different.

In our blog and trade meetings, we talk a lot about the importance of whats under your tile because it really will make the difference in your final outcome. The true expertise for the wood guy comes as his last finish nail is recessed, but for the tile guy it comes before the first piece of tile is laid.

A fair number of tile guys can make a beautiful finish out of an ugly start, but they think the end-look is the only thing that matters. We disagree whole-heartedly because, if the wrong product is used to flatten a floor, or even out a wall, then it will show up eventually. Weve seen tile applied directly to dry wall that lasted through a one-year warranty and then fell off the shower wall. Weve seen thinset used to slope a floor and then tile that began to crack and crunch after the floor was used for a few years.

Tile can cover up poor choices for a while, but with a few years of usage, that corner that was cut or sub-par product that was used will show up in cracking tiles, crunching noises, or even water leaks. Pay for your project only once, by choosing tile professionals who are as skilled at the finish of their trade as they are at the beginning approach.

Selecting a craftsman is an investment in your home or business.  Hiring a low-bid tradesperson is an opportunity to spend even more money later.  Choose wisely.


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