How to measure a room for limestone flooring

Working out how much flooring you need for an installation can be tricky. When you’re dealing with an investment material, like limestone flooring, there can sometimes be a tendency to under order, and this can store up all sorts of problems. Also, calculations can sometimes be difficult to work out too – very few rooms are square empty spaces - but here’s some advice that should be useful.

Always buy from the same batch

Natural materials, like limestone slabs, are best bought from the same batch. There will be colour variation from tile to tile but your limestone flooring can be laid out before it’s bonded into place, to blend different shades and potentially position certain tiles in less conspicuous places. If you have to order more tiles at a later date, there might be an even more prominent colour variation and it will be impossible to mix them into a half fixed floor. There will also be a hold up in terms of receiving the second shipment, and booking your tiler in a second time may cause further delays in getting your project finished.

Wastage and measuring up

Most limestone flooring is sold ‘per sq metre’; some retailers may offer a ‘per tile’ price, which may seem cheaper, but in reality it will normally work out the same.

When you’re calculating your room area, allow extra tiles for wastage. This is typically 5-10% of the total floor area - to accommodate tile cutting and irregularities. It’s best to check with your supplier to see exactly how much they recommend. If you’re dealing with reclaimed limestone flooring, or a completely random pattern, you may need to allow extra wastage. And, if you’re buying a fixed pattern, round up to ensure that you’ve got sufficient tiles. It’s not a bad thing to have a few spare; it will allow extra options in terms of blending colours together and, if you have an accident at a later stage, you’ll have some replacement tiles to hand.

Your first rough calculation should be based on the width of the room x the length of the room; this will give you the basic square meterage. However, to get a more accurate figure you need to take into account how much of the floor area needs covering and also allow for any nooks and crannies. It can be helpful to divide your room up into squares or rectangles and then add the separate measurements together.

Up to or under cabinets?

We always recommend tiling under kitchen cupboards and bathroom cabinets; the end result will be so much better. It will also ensure that you’re dealing with the same floor heights and, if you replace cabinets later on, you won’t have any issues with missing tiles. In addition, you’ll avoid any problems relating to moving things like washing machines and ovens, which can end up being trapped in place if you only tile up to the edge of your white goods and appliances!

If you’re struggling to calculate an accurate measurement, it might be worth getting a professional plan drawn up. Your supplier can then calculate exactly how much limestone flooring you need from these plans and any potential mistakes can be avoided.

For more advice, please call us on 01993 824200 – and to see our Limestone Flooring Collections, please visit www.indigenous.co.uk, join us on FACEBOOK, follow us on Twitter

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