How to screed a floor

Laying expensive stone tiles on a new kitchen or bathroom floor requires a very level surface or very shortly they’ll be looking like a set of dodgy teeth, wobbling alarmingly if you so much as touch them.

To avoid such a dismal outcome, a sure-fire way of getting a dead-level floor is to use a self-levelling screed. This is a DIY project requiring only a modest level of skill.

If you’re confident with painting and decorating, but not quite up to plastering, you’re probably there. No need for architects or advanced building skills with this one – just the right materials and an eye for detail. Laying floor tiles perfectly is an important component of any property development project, too.

Remove loose material from any holes and cracks in the floor and use mortar mix to fill any holes deeper than 5mm. Pry off any skirting and coat the exposed concrete with a suitable sealer. Then scrub off any grease or oil on the floor with detergent. Leave until completely dry.

Mix the self-levelling screed following the instructions on the pack. Take care to use a clean bucket and mixing stick – any grit will spoil it.

It tends to be fast setting, so you’ll need to cover large areas section by section. Beginning in the corner opposite the door, spread the mix evenly (and thinly) over the section of floor area you’re working on using a float. Cover the whole floor, and leave to set firmly. It’s ready to tile and ready to transform.

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