Tile Fix Direct Blog

Product Features

Product Feature: Marmox Thermoblock

Creating a well insulated and environmentally friendly home is becoming one of the top priorities of both construction companies and home owners. While there are many ways to insulate a building once completed, starting at the bottom is one of the most effective ways to insulate a property by eliminating the ‘thermal bridge’ – this is when heat is lost through the bottom layer of blocks or bricks where the wall and floor meet. Using an insulating block such as Marmox Thermolbock to replace this bottom course of bricks or blocks eliminates the cold bridge at the wall & floor junction.

Marmox Thermoblock is a highly insulating, load-bearing building block that can be used to reduce or eliminate the thermal bridge. Many insulating materials cannot be used at the bottom layer as they are not strong enough to bear the load of the bricks or blocks above, however Thermoblocks are made of the same XPS material as Multiboard tile backer boards, but with a strong and rigid epoxy concrete frame.

“The standard Marmox Thermoblock comprises of a 60mm thick core of fire resistant XPS insulation encasing two rows of high strength, low conductive, epoxy-concrete columns. These are fixed to the top and bottom surfaces of the block, which are 2.5mm thick layers of fibre reinforced polymer concrete incorporating the latest innovation in building technology – Carbon Nano Tubes.”

Features & Benefits of Marmox Thermoblock

  • Insulating
  • Fire resistant
  • Lightweight
  • Load-bearing
  • Impermeable to water
  • Thermal conductivity of 0.047W/mK
  • Mean compressive strength of 9.0N/mm2
  • Shear strength 0.18N/mm2

Marmox Thermoblock is designed to be placed at the base of a masonry or timber–frame wall to address the thermal bridge. Its thermal conductivity is 0.047W/mK which will result in a significant reduction in y values when used at wall to floor junctions. All building regulations in the UK and Ireland now say: “The building fabric should be continuous over the whole building envelope and constructed so that there are no reasonably avoidable thermal bridges in the insulation layers caused by gaps in the various elements.” Marmox Thermoblock satisfies this requirement perfectly by connecting the wall insulation with the floor insulation.

The blocks are 65mm high, equal to the standard brick height in the UK, designed to give the necessary insulation required. The Thermoblock material is also impermeable to water so it can be used in damp conditions and even creates a moisture barrier – preventing damp from entering the property. When installing Marmox Thermoblock, MSP360 Adhesive & Sealant should be used between blocks to prevent moisture creeping up into the joint and also for timber construction to seal the top surface of the block to the sole plate. Check out the MSP360 product page for coverage information.

Order Marmox Thermoblock and Marmox MSP360 adhesive online at Tile Fix Direct.

NEW BAL Flexbone VAried & 2Easy Uncoupling Systems

Great news – BAL Flexbone 2Easy and Flexbone VAried are now in stock at Tile Fix Direct! We’re excited to be able to offer you these two exciting new uncoupling products that will save you time and money on your next floor tiling job. BAL now offer a complete uncoupling package of solutions and say “Each and every project has different requirements. Maybe height build-up is an issue, perhaps time is an issue, or the substrate is particularly troublesome. Cavities or no cavities, lightweight or floating, water- proof or not – we have the uncoupling solution for you!”

BAL Flexbone 2Easy Floating Uncoupling Matting

Flexbone 2Easy is a unique uncoupling matting that requires no adhesive between the mat and the substrate. That’s right, as long as your floor is level and stable you can simply give it a quick sweep, roll out the matting and start tiling. Flexbone 2Easy is 3mm thick and has a bone-shaped structure that’s much easier to fill with adheisve than other cavity-style decoupling mats. Because there’s no adhesive beneath the matting it can be used in places where tiling was not an option before; for example rental properties, heritage projects or showrooms where the flooring might need to be changed frequently. You can even use it over new anhydrite or sand & cement screeds that are not cured as the moisture will evaporate through covering joints. The matting comes on a 20m roll but you can also buy it in 5m cut lengths.

BAL Flexbone 2Easy Perforation for Moisture Vapour Dissipation

Flexbone 2Easy Perforation for Moisture Vapour Dissipation

BAL Flexbone VAried Bonded Uncoupling Matting

Flexbone VAried is a bonded uncoupling mat but with the same bone-shaped structure as 2Easy that’s easy to fill and reduces installation time by up to 30%. This matting is perfect for floors subject to lateral movement; it stops tiles cracking or popping up and has 50% higher shear strength than other cavity mats. It’s also waterproof so it’s the ideal choice for wet rooms, showers and bathrooms as no additional tanking is required. Flexbone VAried is recommended for underfloor heating, new cement screeds, timber floors and existing floor surfaces and can be used to install large format ceramic & porcelain tiles, slabs & natural stone with a minimum edge length of 100mm. As well as domestic environments, it is perfect for high load bearing commercial projects such as shopping malls, airports, car showrooms, office buildings and hospitals.

BAL Flexbone VAried Griplock Technology

Flexbone VAried Griplock Technology

Find out more about the full range of BAL uncoupling solutions and which one is right for your project on the BAL Uncoupling Tip Sheet and shop the full range at Tile Fix Direct here.

Schlüter DITRA-HEAT Wifi Thermostat Available at Tile Fix Direct

Is there anything that can’t be controlled via our smart phones nowadays? Ok, that might be a bit of an exaggeration but with cat flaps and kettles joining the list of app-controlled devices, it’s no surprise that top electric underfloor heating manufacturer Schlüter are joining the club. Their DITRA-HEAT range is already extremely successful and now they have added smart wifi thermostat to enhance the award-winning system.

Based on their existing 2″ thermostat, the new Schlüter wifi-enabled thermostat allows you to truly customise your electric underfloor heating system. The easy set-up wizard means you can start scheduling up to six different events per day for the ultimate flexibility. Dedicated Android and Apple iOS apps are available to download for free that feature an easy to use intuitive interface. If you are using electric underfloor heating throughout your home you can control all of your Schlüter thermostats from one app – either individually or via groups to create heating zones within the home. Multiple users can make their own changes to the same thermostats to meet the needs of everyone in the household. The stylish wall mounted units are small and discreet so they will not affect the overall design of your space.

Features & Benefits of Schlüter Wifi Thermostat

  • Turn the system on and off remotely so you can wake up or arrive home to a warm home
  • The adaptive system ensures the desired temperature is achieved in the most energy efficient way
  • Open window function shuts off the heating for 30 minutes is a rapid drop in temperature caused by an open window or door is detected
  • Switch between six default modes; Manual, Eco, Comfort, Boost, Frost Protection and Holiday
  • Keep track of energy consumption and running costs

The RT5 thermostat is a square wall-mounted device with a 2″ touchscreen that can be controlled via Android and Apple iOS devices. The RT5 wifi thermostat is also included in the DITRA-HEAT-DUO kits which include everything you need to install the DITRA-HEAT system – DITRA-HEAT decoupling matting, electric underfloor heating cables and a wifi thermostat. When used as part of the DITRA-HEAT system, the thermostats can provide the ultimate in comfort and DITRA-HEAT-DUO matting features fast reacting heating and acoustic reduction fleece, as well as the stud structure that makes installing the cables quick and easy. See the different kit sizes available at Tile Fix Direct below.

Code Uncoupled Area (m2) Heated Area (m2)
SHDHTBS2 2.4 1.6
SHDHTBS3 3.2 2.2
SHDHTBS4 4 2.7
SHDHTBS5 4.8 3.3
SHDHTBS6 5.6 3.8
SHDHTBS7 6.4 4.4
SHDHTBS8 7.2 5

Marmox Sloping Board & SoundBoard Now Available at Tile Fix Direct

We’ve been stocking Marmox products since the beginning of Tile Fix Direct over 10 years ago and today Multiboard tile backer boards and Showerlay shower trays are still two of our best selling products. So we’re excited to add two more to our range – Sloping Board and SoundBoard. Sloping Board is designed to create a fall on balconies or in wet rooms while SoundBoard provides soundproofing for floors – read on to find out more.

Marmox Sloping Board

Sloping Board only differs from standard Multiboard in thickness; at the thinner end it measures 10mm thick with the slope extending to 33mm at the thicker end. The 1200x1200mm boards are still made of XPS foam sandwiched between two layers of patented polymer-concrete and has all the same properties – it’s waterproof, insulating, lightweight and perfect for tiling. The 10mm to 33mm slope may sound like an odd choice but it’s actually been designed to allow you to extend the slope indefinitely using 20mm thick boards as per the diagram below.

Sloping Board can be used internally and externally to create a self-draining tiled surface, in fact it was originally developed for use on balconies but is also a great solution for wet rooms or communal showering areas where a drainage channel is set against a wall. Tiling a balcony or terrace can often be difficult due to the fluctuations in temperature which can cause cracked tiles, but Marmox Sloping Board absorbs a large amount of the lateral movement in the sub floor making tiling a balcony a much safer prospect. When installed using Marmox waterproofing products it’s easy to create a leak-free tiled balcony above a habitable space.

Order Marmox Sloping Board at Tile Fix Direct.

Marmox SoundBoard

Impact sound can be a big concern when tiling floors in flats and apartments, in fact many local authorities do not allow tiled bathroom floors in shared accommodation for this very reason. Impact sound, illustrated by the red arrow in the diagram below, is often increased by tiling a floor making a solution like SoundBoard extremely important.

Marmox SoundBoard has a layer of rubber foam on one side that stops the vibrations transferring to the room below, reducing the impact sound by 20db. The boards are available in two thicknesses: 8mm and 12mm; the difference in the two thicknesses is that the 12mm board provides more thermal insulation than the 8mm version.

SoundBoard is much more than just soundproofing; it also acts as a decoupling layer to absorb lateral movement and prevent cracks in the tiles as well as being totally waterproof and providing thermal insulation.

  • Reduces sound (DLW) by 20db
  • Reduces heat loss by up to 60%
  • Load bearing – 30 tonnes/m2
  • Easy to cut with a saw or knife
  • Ready to receive tiles
  • fully waterproof

You can buy Marmox 8mm SoundBoard and Marmox 12mm SoundBoard online now.

How To Install The Eterno Ivica Adjustable Paving Support Pedestal System

After a steady rise in popularity over the last couple of years, it seems porcelain paving is here to stay. It’s easy to see why it has become the material of choice for homeowners; it’s available in a range of designs, has a slip resistant surface and isn’t affected by the changing British weather. But when it comes to installation, there is some debate around which method is best. A traditional solid base and tile adhesive seems the best route to go down, but if you are installing porcelain pavers onto a balcony or terrace this is not a practical option – this is where pedestals come in.

What is a paving pedestal system?

These plastic pedestals don’t look like much but they can be used to create a tiled area on balconies and terraces quite easily. Most systems involve using a series of plastic pedestals to support the tiles and create a raised floor. There are a number of different types available including adjustable, self-levelling and extendable. This system is relatively mess-free and uses no adhesive or grout, leaving the joints between the tiles completely open. The base will need to have the correct falls and be fully waterproofed to allow the water to drain away below the tiles.

Benefits of the Eterno Ivica paving pedestal system

There are a range of benefits of using Eterno pedestals on balconies and terraces, we’ve listed some of them below:

  • Self-levelling head for easy installation
  • Better thermal insulation
  • Improved acoustic insulation
  • Significantly lighter
  • Hides pipes and equipment
  • Flat & level surface
  • Excellent absorption of structural movement
  • Quick drainage through open joints
  • Very strong & resistant to loads
  • Easy to remove or replace a single tile

How to install Eterno Ivica paving pedestals

Eterno Ivica pedestals are relatively easy to install – we have outlined the basic instructions below.

  1. Measure the height you want your finished patio to sit at and take away the thickness of the tile – this will give you the height of the pedestal you will need. Patio height – tile thickness = pedestal height.
  2. Use a length of string to mark the finished patio height across the whole area –
    the pedestals will need to be adjusted in some areas to accommodate the falls in the base – check it is level using a spirit level.
  3. Place four pedestals at the corners of where you are laying your first tile. Remove the unused spacer tabs by snapping them so the only remaining one’s are in the joints.
  4. Place a spirit level on top of the tile and adjust the pedestal using a Pedestal Adjustment Key until it is level. Continue to do this as each tile is installed. Do not stand on the tile while adjusting the pedestal underneath it. The self-levelling head compensates for gradients up to 5%.
  5. In corners or around edges the pedestals can be cut using a saw.
  6. Use a length of wood or a long rule and a spirit level, check the finished area is level.

Watch the below video from Eterno Ivica for a visual installation guide.

Eterno Ivica paving pedestals at Tile Fix Direct

We stock a number of Eterno Ivica pedestal products at Tile Fix Direct for use on balconies and terraces:

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