Updated on March 7, 2023

How to Use a Tile Levelling System

Laying ceramic tile flooring yourself is a good way to save money. Make sure your floor is straight by using a tile levelling system.

Difficulty level : 
Duration : 
1 day
Before You Start
The following steps should be performed simultaneously.

Apply mortar while making cuts and placing tiles as well as levelling material to avoid walking over freshly laid flooring. We suggest doing this step with 2-3 tiles at a time.

Keep going until you’ve almost fully completed a row. Cut the last tile with the size you need and move onto the next rows.

Levelling systems are designed to produce grout joints of the desired width. However, it is helpful to have some spacers of the same width on hand for spaces where the clips will not fit (such as door frames, wall edges, and hard-to-reach corners).
Man spreading tile mortar

Spread the Mortar

  • 1.1Follow steps 1 to 4 in our guide How to Install Ceramic Tile Flooring.
  • 1.2Spread mortar along the layout lines, laying down enough product to fill all indentations in the membrane, covering the space of about 2-3 tiles at a time.
  • 1.3Use the notched edge of a trowel to rake through the mortar to create ridges. These ridges should all be in the same direction.
Man insterting levelling clipsMan laying down a floor tileMan pressing down on a floor tile

Install the Tiles and Clips

  • 2.1Following the reference lines, place a ceramic tile onto the mortar and gently press down.
  • 2.2Remove excess mortar.
  • 2.3Slide 2 levelling clips underneath each edge of the tile so they’re firmly embedded in the mortar. Each clip should be placed 2-3” from the corner of the tile.
  • 2.4Lay the next tile up to the levelling clips, ensuring that the feet of the clips get adequate mortar coverage.

Pro Tip

For larger tiles (12” or larger on any side), use 3 clips per side. If needed, you can purchase extra clips and wedges to cover the entire surface. It’s also a good idea to apply a thin, even coat of mortar on the back of these larger tiles so they stay in place when you press them into the mortar.

Man inserting levelling wedgesMan inserting levelling wedgesMan using levelling pliers

Insert the Wedges

  • 3.1Once 2-3 tiles have been placed, insert the wedges into the clips by hand.
  • 3.2Ensure the levelling system pliers are set to the correct length for the wedges used.
  • 3.3Using the levelling system pliers, gently push the wedge into the clip until the surfaces of both tiles are flush and aligned.
  • 3.4The wedges should be snug and encounter resistance, without being too tight (which could snap the clip).
  • 3.5Repeat the process for each tile.
  • 3.6As the wedges are tightened, wipe away any excess mortar from the joints, levelling clips, and wedges.
  • 3.7Let everything dry for at least 24 hours, or as per the manufacturer guidelines.
Man using a rubber malletMan removing clips parts with a utility knife

Remove the Levelling System

  • 4.1Once the mortar is dry, remove the levelling system.
  • 4.2Using the rubber mallet (or your foot!), tap each clip and wedge assembly briskly in the same direction as the joint (perpendicular to the wedges).
  • 4.3If any part of the clip remains in the joint, it can be removed with a utility knife and long-nose pliers.
Man spreading tile grout

Finalize the Project

Follow the remaining steps in our guide How to Install Ceramic Tile Flooring.

Pro Tip

Recuperate and save the wedges to use them on your next DIY tile project!


These DIY projects are provided for informational purposes only. The information contained in Réno-Dépôt’s DIYs is intended to provide general guidelines to simplify jobs around the house. Because tools, products, materials, techniques, building codes, and local regulations are continually changing, Réno-Dépôt (a division of RONA Inc.) assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information contained herein and disclaims any liability for the omissions, errors, or outcome of any project. Réno-Dépôt (a division of RONA Inc.) makes no representation on the feasibility of any project and the viewer bears all risks coming with the realization of the projects. It is the responsibility of the viewer to ensure compliance with all applicable laws, rules, codes, and regulations for a project. The viewer must always take proper safety precautions and exercise caution when taking on any project. If there is any doubt in regard to any element of a project, please consult a licensed professional. 

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