How Long Before You Can Walk On Tile

How Long Before You Can Walk On Tile
  • Author: Amanda Arnold
  • Posted On: March 3, 2022
  • Updated On: August 21, 2023

Don’t spoil all of your hard work by walking on the new ceramic tile incorrectly if you’ve recently upgraded your home with new ceramic tile. While ceramic tiles are long-lasting and resilient, new flooring is susceptible to damage in the first few days.

Stay off the tiles until the adhesive, mortar, and grout have had time to cure and set for the best results. After two days, you should be able to walk on the tiles. The floor tiles should be soaked in water before setting them down and again the next day. The tiles can only be installed when the surface is completely dry and free of water stains.

The amount of time you must wait before stepping on a newly tiled floor depends on the adhesive and grout brands you choose, as well as whether or not you use a sealer.

A few Considerations Before Walking On Tiles

You’ll be able to feel all of those ungrouted edges if you walk barefoot. And the idea of repairing a few cracked tiles before the floor is grouted adds to the time it takes to grout the floor. If you need to move the big items back in, use plywood. For foot traffic, cardboard is ideal.

Another issue with grouting too soon is the risk of cracking. If there is still water in the mortar, it will impact the grout, causing shadowing and efflorescence. If you wish to grout the same day, use a rapid set grout.

Before grouting the tiles, give them at least 24 hours to dry. The thin margins or thin-set showing through the grout lines may appear dry. It is not fully cured because the thin-set behind the tiles does not get as much air as the edges.

Best Way To Walk On Newly Installed Tiles

If you want to use the newly installed tile floor for walking, allow at least 24 hours for the newly placed ceramic tiles to rest before walking on them to ensure they do not shift in the wet mortar or grout.

To prevent the tiles from dirt and scuff marks, remove your shoes before walking on them. In high-traffic areas, tile the floor in portions, leaving as much of a path to popular destinations as feasible, such as a doorway, sink, or refrigerator. Only use the old tiles to walk on.

If you have to walk on newly installed tiles in case of emergency or need, you can use a piece of plywood to place on tiles. In this way, it would be easier for you to walk on the tiles without damaging the tile’s surface and grout. Plywood board will help distribute the weight without leaving too much pressure on your floor tiling.

How To Dry Tile Floor Appropriately Before Walking?

If you’re the type of homeowner who prefers not to sweat the small stuff, hiring a professional to install floor tile will eliminate a lot of the guesswork and offer you a much higher chance of getting the project done correctly in a short amount of time.

A tile contractor will not only be able to complete the project quickly and professionally, but they will also be able to provide you with sound advice on which tiles will work best in your situation, as well as maintenance and cleaning suggestions.

Proper drying time is essential for a good floor tile installation, whether you do it yourself or employ a professional. Even if the project appears to be completed, a freshly laid floor needs some time to settle before walking on it.

Though waiting a minimum of 12 hours before using your new bathroom or kitchen floor may be inconvenient, the specialists will tell you that 24 hours is best. Consider this an excellent opportunity to see a cousin or acquaintance.

Tile’s Composition Also Matters In Drying Time

Composition is something that many first-time DIYers or installers should consider. Smaller tiles on a large kitchen floor will not only take longer to install, but they will also make the area appear too cluttered for most people’s tastes.

On the other hand, large tiles might make a small room appear larger. It’s also crucial to think about the tile’s material and its color and size. Natural stone tiles last a long time but require more maintenance than a typical ceramic tile. The appearance and care of the grout between the tiles are a major issue for many homeowners.

Grout tends to discolor and hold stains, making it a thorn in the side of even the most effective cleaners. Ensure that whoever handles the job seals the grout to avoid stains. If your grout has seen better days, you may be able to replace it for a fraction of the expense of installing a new floor.


Allow 24 hours for the mortar to set once you’ve laid the tiles on the floor. After that, tile grout must be applied to keep the tiles in place and produce a more uniform surface. Spread the grout with a flooring float and wipe away any grout that sticks to the tiles’ surface with a sponge.

To avoid stepping on a floor that isn’t quite ready. You can plan ahead of time by leaving pathways to locations you need to go and avoiding fully blocking the entrance to a room.

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Author: Amanda Arnold

Amanda has been working with ConstructionHow since 2021. Her experience spans over 5 years in the creative niche such as home decor and trends, landscaping, renovations, and custom architectural values. As a home designer expert, she has a keen eye for the latest home improvement trends with accurate facts that readers find impossible to ignore. Being invested in home-building trends is how she has gained her lucrative expertise exploring more to bring a positive ambiance for all homeowners (and even tenants!). Currently, she lives in a beautiful beach home, a source of fascination for her.