Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Designing Your Kitchen With Concrete Tiles

Concrete tiles, similarly referred to as cement tiles, are generic products for both residential plus commercial areas. After undergoing revitalization in the early 20th century then dipping off again in the 50s and 60s, the concrete tiles are having a comeback. Esteemed for their toughness and exclusive designs concrete tiles are among the most common selections for kitchens. If you are presently in the development of refurbishing your kitchen, or you have been fantasizing of improving your kitchen space, the concrete tiles are indeed a material to check out.

Why Are Concrete Tiles Superb for Your Kitchens?

You will have a tough time discovering a material that is as exciting and provides as numerous design opportunities as concrete tiles. They may be completed into just about whichever pattern, design and color you can envisage, which is a motive why many property holders are picking concrete tiles instead of other materials, akin to plain ceramic tiles and hardwood floors, for their kitchens. Cement tiles are extraordinarily hard-wearing and resilient, owing to their manufacturing process. A combination of sand, color pigments, mineral powders and cement, are poured in metal molds, supported by aggregates and strengthened by approximately 2,000 pounds of force. The consequence is a tile that will not chip, fade, or display signs of tear and wear, plus a design that shall remain as beautiful as it initially did for an extended time.

Consider the general look

Your floor must work together with the remainder of your kitchen consequently take a look plus material of the units into consideration when choosing flooring. Materials like matt porcelain and durable laminate shall look excellent in contemporary schemes, whereas warm wood and natural stone tiles suit old-fashioned designs. A typical, modern flooring material is refined concrete, which offers a chic, industrial superiority. There is an extensive range of floor covering materials on the proposition that can be employed to improve your cooking zone. Nonetheless, before you set out on an element, there are several significant points to deliberate.

Kitchen flooring – all you necessitate to know

For your kitchen refashion, do not supervise the adaptability of concrete tiles. The consequence will be a kitchen that is flawlessly on point to your character, and that shall keep up attractively for numerous years to come. It necessitates to perform on many levels –safety, ease of cleaning and durability – and it need look great, also. In the end, your high-quality of flooring can break or make your kitchen appearance. It is stress-free to oversee kitchen flooring when you are eventful thinking of what appliances, units plus added extras you will have. However, the floor of the kitchen is probably one of the most prominent surface expanses in the room; thus its assortment deserves careful thought.

An In-depth Look at Cement Tiles

Cement tiles offer timeless appeal, but before you order some, it is wise to consider where you will be placing them, what kind of maintenance and care is involved among other factors. Below is an in-depth look of cement tiles.

The origin of cement tiles

Cement tiles were first produced in the South of France in the 1870s however the Spanish improved the mastery not so long after by developing many and beautiful colors and patterns. They introduced the Mediterranean, Moroccan and floral designs that are currently very popular.

How they are made

Unlike the usual ceramic tiles, cement tiles are handmade by blending cement, mineral pigments, marble powder, fine sand and other natural materials that do not require kiln firing.

The mixture is then placed in a mold to create the bold, colorful designs of the tile followed by a water bath to cure. Once completely dried, the tiles are treated with a light wax coating. Using a tool known as a hydraulic press, the bottom cement layer (usually a solid grey color) is bonded to the patterned top layer to solidify the two parts into one tile.

It takes about four weeks for the cement tiles to reach 90 percent of their potential strength and will continue to gain strength for decades. It is not that the cement tiles continue to dry out, they go through a chemical reaction that hardens the cement over time.

Where can they be used?

Because of the toughness of cletile cement tiles, the possibilities for design and installation are to a certain extent endless. Cement tiles can be used in a wide variety of spaces including fireplaces, showers, backsplashes and even outdoors where they can withstand all weather conditions.


How to look after cement tiles after they have been installed is an area you should be very keen to keep the tiles looking fresh and maintain the beautiful designs on them. Cement tiles are made up of durable components, but the marble element of these tiles are affected by acids and harsh chemicals. It is essential to do the following:

• Sealing

It is recommended to apply dry treat's stain proof sealer 24 hours after your ceramic tiles have been installed to prevent staining, especially in high traffic areas. Other constructors recommend that the tiles be sealed before and after installation, especially if the tiles are being placed on wet areas this will prevent staining. Also, re-sealing should be done depending on the type sealer that you use.

• Cleaning

Ceramic tiles should only be cleaned with a PH Neutral cleaner. Avoid using any harsh cleaning products that contain bleach or acidic chemicals. Even after showering, soaps or shampoo can sit on the tiles and cause damage; tiles need to be cleaned thoroughly after use.

Common Sizes

Cement tiles come in various sizes and shapes since different manufacturers produce them. But the most common sizes currently available in the market are 6”x 6” and 8" x 8" in square shapes, and 6" - 8" hexagon shaped tiles.

Pattern and color options

Pattern and color options for cement tiles are diverse especially because most manufacturers mix different pigments producing various appearances. Some patterns may be traditional, while others are contemporary, what one manufacturer produces will never look the same as those made by another. Find the look you love and go with it.

How To Choose The Right Subway Tile Backsplash For Your Kitchen

Thinking of remodeling your kitchen? The subway tile backsplash is a great choice. Subway tiles have been in use from the early 1900s in New York subways. Apart from protecting the kitchen walls from food, water, and oils splashes they enable the proprietor to express themselves in a variety of textures and colours.

Subway tiles are easy to clean, stain resistant and light reflective making them a go-to tile option for your kitchen and relatively cheap. Its size and shapes make it easier to enhance the other decorative features of the kitchen such as the cabinets, windows, and lighting. They are creating visual interest and a focal point in the kitchen. Moreover, it's important to note the versatility feature that comes with subway tiles. One has many patterns to select.

1. Type of material

As said earlier subway tiles have versatility. There is a variety of stuff you can pick from when selecting your subway tile backsplash. The kind of material can be porcelain, ceramic, glass, marble and many more. With this unlimited number of patterns, you can try out what works for your kitchen design.

2. Texture and color

Color choices say a lot of who we are and the right color makes everything falls into place in the kitchen. Having your preferred cletile subway tile backsplash color gives the kitchen a personal touch and keeping things simple. You'll decide whether you want your backsplash to be neutral or colorful. The color has also to match with the kitchen color.

3. Backsplash height

The height of the backsplash is an essential factor to consider when choosing the subway tile backsplash. You have to decide whether you want it to reach the nearest shelf or top of your cabinet. Height is an important detail that most people tend to ignore. Interestingly the more the height, the better the focal point in the kitchen.

4. Size, pattern, and shape

It's important to note that subway tiles come in different forms. Whether the classic three by six or four by four tile would be ideally best for your kitchen. Shapes also come with different patterns; the right subway tile backsplash has to fit well with your kitchen. You have to decide how these factors might impact the overall design of your kitchen.

Most people overlook a lot of things when deciding the right backsplash to go for their kitchen. Comment if you would consider the above factors when choosing your kitchen backsplash.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Things To Avoid When Installing Subway Tiles

Installing subway tiles are totally the new trend right now, and it is elegant and timeless. Installing the subway tiles is quick and easy as well as a cost-effective activity. But, it can also be a total pain to install the tiles without proper background search of the dos and don'ts of the process. So here are five things that tilers should avoid when installing subway tiles:

1. Lack of a layout plan

Before embarking on the journey of installing subway tiles, it is of profound importance to have a plan. The prior plans include being aware of the space, the pattern of choice, and the number and size of tiles required; it is also important to consider the floor and the ceiling to avoid ending up with slivers on either end or tiny cuts on the corners. It is advisable to make use of Excel to come up with the layout plan.

2. Indecorous wall preparation

This is the first mistake most tilers make. For a perfect job of installing cletile subway tiles on the wall, it is critical to ensure that the walls are free from fingerprints or grease stains. Unclean walls prevent both the adhesive and the tiles to adhere to the walls.

3. Cracking the tiles

Regardless of the material the tile is made of, they can easily crack, where having many cracked tiles can be both wasteful and expensive. To avoid cracks when cutting the tiles, it is advisable to use a wet saw and apply slow, even pressure to create a precise cut. It is worthwhile noting that the wet saw is a bit expensive, but most hardware stores tend to rent them.

4. Forgetting to mark the end tiles

The edges demand that one cut the tile to fit; hence, it is crucial to hold in place each end tile and mark it for cutting. When making the mark, subtracting the width of the grout joint is vital. This eps in avoiding having small tiles all over the subway, which destroys the intended outcome.

5. Lack of proper cleaning

Most people want to be proud of themselves after installing subway tiles by themselves, but end up disappointed for the messy work left. It is time-saving to scrap the thin set that oozes between the tiles as one continues to install the subway tiles since it is a lot difficult to get them out before grouting. Always remember to clean as you go.

These are just but a few mistakes that tilers do when installing tiles. The CleTile comments section is open for readers to comment on their views regarding the article as well as add other things that tilers should avoid when installing tiles.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Tips on how to Install Terracotta Tiles

Are you wondering where to get tips of laying terracotta tile? This is the right place to be.

Prepare and clean the surface

After the right terracotta tiles are chosen and ready for installation on any surface, be it a wall, exterior or house interior, it is prudent that the surface is cleaned to ensure proper bonding. A standard level of cleaning should be achieved through thorough cleaning. For rough surfaces, a stiff brush should be used to scrub all the dirt.

Eventually, the intended surface should be cleaned using a combination of water and another suitable solvent such as trisodium phosphate.

Fill in any existing crack or concrete

After the cleaning, it is recommended that any existing crack or damage on the surface, which is to be tilled should be repaired using a crack filling membrane. Normally, a thin mixed mortar is used to cover the holes and cracks. The mortar is smoothed with a trowel to achieve a uniform gradient on the surfaces.

Dry-lay the tiles

Terracotta tiles need to be soaked in water and allowed to dry before they are set for laying. The main reason for soaking the tiles is to ensure that they are not stiff. Additionally, watering them reduces the chances of breakage.

Once the tiles are dry, they are laid on the floor and cut to acquire the right shape to achieve a given pattern. Afterwards, the tiles should be laid close to the laying surface so that technicians can easily reach them with ease while working.

Commence the laying Procedure

Normally, a thin layer of mortar is mixed as directed on the packet instruction. Using a trowel, the mortar is applied on the terracotta, and the hedges are combed to create a groove that will ensure an adhesion is achieved. After that, the tiles are gently laid into place with a specific measurement spacer for consistent spacing.

Notably, the mortar that accidentally lands on the surface of a terracotta tile should be removed immediately using sponge and water.

Grout Application

Grouting is the last procedure in tile installation. Normally, it is applied when the floor is dry and can be stepped. But before it is applied, spacers should be eliminated from the floor. Since terracotta tiles come in various texture, there are some suitable sealing to befit each of them. For instance.

Homemade terracotta

Since it is highly porous, sealing is done before grouting. Other technicians seal them before they are laid. Its one's choice to decide when to seal them. Besides, such terracotta tiles demand a thick layer of sealant.

Stoneware terracotta

It has a low water absorption rate, and therefore, pre-sealing is not really important. However, grouting is necessary to reduce water absorption through tile hedges.

To sum it up, these are the standard procedures of laying terracotta tile. However, technicians are advised to read instruction manuals to ensure that they follow the right procedure in details. What are your opinions concerning the above tips?

Monday, December 17, 2018

Why White Subway Tiles Are So Popular

Subway tiles are mostly preferred for family and home use for their simplicity and beauty. There are different shades of the white subway tile, ranging from beveled white subway tile, subway backsplash, to bright white ice subway tiles.

Shades of the White Subway Tile

Before talking about why the white subway tiles are so popular, we need to know the various types of subway shades.

Beveled White Subway Tile

This tile is pure white that is, the shade is very rare to find. The advantage of this tile is that it is hard hence hard to break. Its popularity is boosted by the fact that it is an attractive tile that is easy to add a splash of contemporary styling to a home's décor.

Subway Backsplash

The tile is also a classic and stylish choice especially for a kitchen, this tile is a great backdrop to shelves or colorful artworks, subway backlash can be installed sideways which turns out to be much more interesting

Bright White Ice Subway Tiles

This tile is strictly a wall tile, they offer a long lasting beauty that is versatile, affordable and easy to maintain. These tiles are simple in design. They are white in color and are well polished.

The Price

Subway tiles are relatively affordable ranging from $3 to $13, they are packed in a box of 12 sq. ft. containing 8 tiles per square foot

The Size

Subway tiles come with a variety of sizes from 3" by 6", 2" by 4" or 4" by 8" giving a variety of useful options, wall tiles are best thin and lighter while heavy and thick tiles suit the floor which is an option available with subway tiles.


Subway tiles would gain popularity for their variety usage as they can be used both in the kitchen and in the bathroom wall and floor, as much as floor tiles would need to be heavier and thicker like the terracotta tiles in order to withstand furniture weight and foot activities, the subway tiles poses a suitability for both the wall and the floor though they are best used as wall tiles for a long lasting and durable solution

Terracotta tiles are also a beautiful mix of earthen and red hues that wash in the swooping clouds of color to create a unique yet subdued images on the surfaces of all fired tiles. This is highly influenced by the iron deposits that are contained in the clay used to manufacture terracotta tiles.

The subway tiles is ceramic, which makes many people prefer it than most tiles which are made from clay. In order to achieve the best outcome and beauty on home walls then white subway tiles are the best choice making it a family's favorite.

Monday, December 10, 2018

How To Maintain Terracotta Tiles

Terracotta tile is a "cooked earth" used to decorate both indoor and outdoor surfaces. For centuries, it has provided an inviting and warm look in driveways, garden paths and walls. Additionally, it comes in an array of colors, shapes, sizes and textures.

As a natural material, terracotta tiles age with time. Thus, it requires some level of care to keep it appealing. Naturally, this kind of decoration becomes more porous with time, allowing the development of stains and watermarks. If one is not careful, he or she can become a slave to terracotta floor maintenance.

This post highlights a few ways to maintain terracotta tiles to give them a diligent surface and to protect them for the future.

Regular Cleaning

It is a good idea to sweep the terracotta floor every time one cleans the neighbouring environs. Sweeping the tiles clean prevents a buildup of dirt and grime. Additionally, regular sweeping makes the general cleaning much faster and easier.

Notably, dirt accumulation results to surface scratches and also weakening of the tiles.

Use of Mild Detergents/Vinegar

A mixture of warm water and vinegar provide an excellent solution for cleaning terracotta tiles. Ideally, vinegar is a robust stain cleanser and it's very effective in scrubbing oil, grime and accumulated dirt. Other detergents such as soap can also be used to clean terracotta tiles.

When using detergents to clean the tiles, apply the cleaner and scrub before it sips or dries out. Repeat the procedure until the desired look is achieved. Carefully, clean the edges and avoid scrubbing the grout that is applied between the tiles.

When the cleaning is done, thoroughly wipe the excess moisture, which may result in damage through the way of infiltration.

Ensure Regular Sealing

Whether used indoor or outdoor for decorations, terracotta tiles should often be sealed. Outdoor tiles are at higher risk of deterioration than the interior tiles due to temperature fluctuation as a result of snow or rainfall and intense sunlight.

Sealing should, however, be done regardless of the position of the decoration. Sealing the tiles not only restore the beauty of the tiles but it also prolongs the lifespan of the terracotta floor. Conventionally, water is poured on the terracotta floor and left for some time, if the water is absorbed then the sealant is has torn out and has to the reapplied.

Notably, go through the sealant manual to effectively apply the sealant correctly.

Other maintenance methods

  • Do not step on newly installed terracotta tiles or cured tiles. Give the tiles a grace period of 72 hours
  • Wash tiles on a weekly basis with a damp sponge to acquire a light glow ambience. However, for a deep glow clean the tiles with a warm, mild soapy water.

These tips would positively help individuals maintain terracotta tiles. The cleaning methods are the most common way of maintaining such tiles. Nonetheless, cleaning should be done after choosing the right cleaning method and the right detergents. Name some of the ways one can maintain these tiles.