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Monday, June 17, 2024

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HomeTechnicalAsk the ExpertsNTCA lends a hand to consumers

NTCA lends a hand to consumers

Generally, NTCA Technical Team help is reserved for NTCA contractor members. But occasionally, the team will offer distraught consumers assistance or guidance for a problem they are encountering. This answer includes several important publications for tile installers and contractors to know about and assistance for consumers seeking qualified tile contractors. 


I’m a consumer facing a difficult outcome from a recent tile shower installation. My contractor made errors in tile installation (not pitching the shower curb and niches) and I do not believe he fully water-proofed the shower walls, only the shower pan. I’m desperately looking for standard industry publications that outline the proper industry standards for a tile shower installation and waterproofing standards. Would you possibly be able to help directly me or provide me a publication with this detail? I’d be eternally grateful.


Thank you for contacting us at the National Tile Contractors Association. I am sorry to hear you might possibly be having a problematic installation in progress. Here is the best advice I can offer you, although some of it is a bit after the fact:

1. NTCA is recognized as the largest association of tile contractors. We provide free technical support at all levels for our members. We work with them to ensure they understand the recognized tile industry standards, methods, best practices and manufacturer instructions to ensure you get the installation you want and need. Please ask your contractor to contact me (or our team) at [email protected]. Whether or not they are a member of NTCA, our technical team will help where needed to ensure the best installation for you. We speak and understand the language of tile and the recognized standards and methods and best practices to create great installations. We are glad to speak that language with your contractor and will try to help them to ensure success for you and them.

2. If you find it necessary, you can purchase hard copies of the standards and methods we adhere to. To fully understand all aspects of tiling with regard to the issues you are seeing you will need:

  • ANSI A108 / A118 / A136
  • TCNA Handbook
  • NTCA Reference Manual

You can purchase them in these ways:

3. For after-the-fact information for hiring contractors – Please see the brochure at https://bit.ly/3PW8aHF 

4. For more after-the-fact information for hiring qualified contractors, visit: https://bit.ly/2MeqlId. Becoming a Certified Tile Installer (CTI), or an employer who hires Certified Tile Installers means that persons who have passed the “CTI tests” have shown an aptitude to understand the ability to produce an installation grounded on tile industry’s recognized methods and standards.

I understand you are finding yourself in a difficult situation and we want to help. I hope you are able to gain insight from the recommendations I’ve listed above and I hope your contractor contacts our support team. NTCA has a very strong contractor support network in your area. We can help, but it is best for us to begin trying to help through the person you hired. 

Mark Heinlein

Mark Heinlein is Training Director for the National Tile Contractors Association. He is Certified Tile Installer #1112 and currently a Ceramic Tile Education Foundation evaluator for the Certified Tile Installer program. Heinlein was the owner of Mark Heinlein Surfaces of Negaunee, Michigan.


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