2020, blog, How to, November, Tile Talk

7 Simple Steps To Avoid Lippage

7 Simple Steps To Avoid Lippage

Lippage is a situation referring to the difference in elevation between two adjacent tiles that are installed on the floor or wall¹. The larger the size of the tiles (length is more than 450mm), the higher possibility that they are not completely flat. Therefore, reducing lippage in the installation of large format tiles especially the rectangular-shaped tiles will be more challenging.

Here are seven simples steps to follow when installing tiles to reduce the occurrence of lippage.


Select tiles that have surface flatness of less than +/-0.5% (or +/- 2.0mm)² in curvature.


Ensure good preparation of substrate that is flat and even.


Minimise brick pattern installation for rectangular tiles. Allow 33% (or 20cm of the length of tile) or less overlapping in tile installation pattern for tile size of 60cm x 60cm and below.


Ensure that the tiling gap is not less than 3mm for indoor installations. For outdoor installations, due to higher the higher temperature, the tiling gap should not be less than 5mm.³


After the completion of laying and grouting, do allow sufficient drying time before trespassing. For light traffic areas, allow 4 days of drying time while for high traffic areas, 14 days is the recommended drying time.


Always use the levelling system to minimize lippage.


Use proper tile installation tools during the entire process.

Here are other tips to get a good tile installation:


Install tiles

Install tiles following the ‘arrow’ orientation on the back of the tiles


Butter on the Back

Butter on the back of tiles prior to installation especially for large format tiles (60cm x 60cm and above)


Thinset or Bonding Substrate

Use a rubber mallet to tap the tile into thinset or bonding substrate. The rubber mallet is specifically designed for minimum bounce when striking and will not mar the surface of the tile.


  1. The tolerance in height difference on finished floor or wall shall not exceed 1.0mm to comply to QLASSIC requirements, “CIS 7:2014, Quality Assessment System for Building Construction Works by Lembaga Pembangunan Industri Pembinaan Malaysia or CIDB”.
  2. The quality of Niro Granite tile is a surface flatness of less than +/-0.25%.
  3. This is in accordance with MS1294-3:2017 standards.

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