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Most of the floor tiles available in the market are glazed however you can also get unglazed tiles. But before discussing the differences between these two types of tiles let us know what actually glazed and unglazed mean.

glazed tile

Usually people consider a glossy or shiny finish as glazed however in the industry of tiles, glazed is not a matter to describe a finish but a material that is coated on the tiles. It can be liquid glass or enamel that is coated on tiles to make them known as glazed. Glazed tiles can have glossy or matt finish to provide a different look to the space. Many tiles are available in both finishes but that does not mean that the tiles with matt finish are unglazed.

Tiles made of clay are put into a kiln for firing but if they have to be glazed then the coating has to be applied before putting them into the kiln. The process of firing the tiles infuses the glaze into the top layer of the clay of the tile. But, if no coating is applied on the tile before firing it, then it will be called an unglazed tile. In this way, the basic difference between the glazed tiles and unglazed tiles is the coating on them.

Unglazed tiles, whether they are made from porcelain or ceramic, get their color either from the minerals found in the clay they are made of or by adding pigments in it. When, these tiles are pressed to form patterned designs then the pattern runs down to the entire body of the tile, instead of remaining on the top surface only. In this way unglazed tiles look more natural and earthy.

We recommend ordering 10%-15% overage for tile cuts, shipping breakage, or future repairs. If you prefer a less authentic look, without the imperfections inherent to Zellige, please order 20-30% overage in order to cherry-pick the tile.

Please Note: Authentic Moroccan tiles are 100% hand-crafted based on centuries of tradition and characterized by their irregularities and imperfections. Tiles will vary in color, shade, tone and sizes and display pits, cracks and chipped edges. Zellige shown installed in photographs on social media and online may be altered by lighting, filters and other editing tools. We strongly advise purchasing samples prior to placing an order

About ZelligeZellige is a traditional Moroccan tile handcrafted with non-refined natural clay from the Fez region. It is a low-fired terracotta that may be used for all applications, including floor/wall, interior/exterior and water treatments (such as pools). Zellige owes it distinctive appearance to slight variations in size, color and other imperfections.

Each Zellige tile is unique, with color variation between each tile. This variation is due to the ancient glazing process in which raw materials are in use. The process of firing Zellige tiles often causes crazing on the surface of the glazed tiles. Crazing is a common occurrence in handmade tiles that produces an intricate network of small hairline cracks. Zellige tiles are hand chiseled and therefore size variation is common. Be prepared for some variation in width, length and thickness.

To assist you in sorting your way through this maze of confusing terminology we have put together a helpful list of the most common types of tile and their performance characteristics, where to use them, and how to maintain them. We also correct some misconceptions and misleading information regarding glazed and unglazed tiles.

Wall tiles, which have a wider range of colours and decorative surfaces, are produced using the bicottura method. Although the translation implies these tiles are fired twice, they may in fact be fired several times, depending on the number of layers of glaze applied. The firing temperature of bicottura tiles is lower than for monocottura tiles, as hardness is not the required result. Generally speaking, the higher the temperature the harder the tile.

Porcelain tile: Is actually part of the ceramic family, but distinct in its characteristics due to the types and mix of clays used, and the specific methods of production. Porcelain is a much stronger version of ceramic. Both types are made of clay and are fired in a kiln. The main differences are that porcelain tiles have a water absorption rate of less than 0.5%, a result which classifies them as fully vitrified, making them incredibly hard and rendering them suitable for heavy traffic floor use, including industrial situations. Porcelain tiles can be used in virtually any situation - from light traffic bathroom floors (and walls) to factory floors and swimming pools, both in (as mosaics) and around them.

This porosity rate is achieved due to three main factors: the incredible force used to press the clay - up to 100,000 lbs per square inch; the volcanic temperature at which it is fired - approx. 1250 degrees Celsius; and the mix of clays and minerals used. It is the difference in the clay mix - kaolin, felspar, quartziferous sand & metallic oxides, which is at the heart of all the other factors, for it is the clay which enables the extreme pressing and firing to occur. (Kaolin, a white china clay, is crucial in aiding the tile to maintain its shape during the firing process.) By injecting the pigmented dry dust clay into moulds and pressing at this incredible pressure the clay dust particles are compressed very close together, reducing the amount of air and moisture between the particles. This makes for a denser, less porous body. The nature of the porcelain clay is such that when it is fired at approx. 1250 degrees Celsius the dust particles melt and fuse together, resulting in vitrification.

Full-bodied porcelain is a type of vitrified tile where the colour runs right through the body with a single colour from the surface to the base of the tile. Not only is the colour consistent throughout, but the technical properties, such as water absorption, frost & acid resistance are also consistent.

Polished Unglazed Porcelain: Polished porcelain is shiny but it does not have a gloss glaze on it. It is an unglazed tile that has been mechanically polished in the same way that marble or granite tiles are polished to make them shiny, and just as polished marble or granite tiles need to be sealed to prevent them from being stained, so does polished porcelain.

Abrasion Resistance: This is the capacity of the glazed surface to resist the wear caused by foot traffic or the abrasion caused by mechanical equipment, and is classified into 5 categories, depending on the areas the tiles are to be used in:

The above article is an attempt to help sort through, and make sense of, the vast array of competing types of ceramic and porcelain tiles, and the confusing and sometimes misleading claims for one type over another.

The main difference between the manufacture of glazed and unglazed tiles occurs during the firing process. Both kinds of tiles are created using natural clays and pigments, which are then fired to harden them. This is where the process stops for unglazed tiles, which feature a more natural, rustic look with a textured and matte finish.

Glazed tiles are subjected to a second firing process where they are covered in a protective coating of liquid glass. This protective coating makes the tiles somewhat slick, but also allows them to be printed with a wide variety of designs and colors using inkjet technology.

Now that you know the difference between glazed and unglazed porcelain tile, how do you know which type is right for your home? The answer can be found by asking yourself how you will be using the space.

As wonderful as unglazed tiles can be, glazed porcelain tile is actually the more widely used and available of the two styles. This is because there are so many design options offered within glazed porcelain tile, meaning that there's a glazed tile for every design aesthetic.

The protective coating also protects glazed tile from staining and bacteria. Glazed tiles are typically smoother than unglazed, but they can still have some texture and are not always high-sheen, making them suitable for a wide variety of projects.

There are two main types of Chinese glazed tiles: glazed tubular tile and glazed plate tile. Glazed tubular tiles (see monk and nun) are moulded into tube shape on a wooden mould, then cut into halves along their length, producing two tubular tiles, each semicircular in section. A tube-shaped clay mould can be cut into four equal parts, with a cross section of a quarter of a circle, then glazed into a four plate tile.[citation needed]

Glazed plate tiles are laid side by side across and overlapping each other. In the Song Dynasty, the standard overlap was forty percent, which increased to seventy percent in the Qing dynasty. With the Song-style forty-percent overlap, it was not possible to have triple tile overlap, as there was a twenty-percent gap between the first plate tile and the third plate tile. Hence, if a crack developed in the second tile, water leakage was inevitable. On the other hand, with the Qing dynasty style seventy-percent overlapping, the first plate tile was overlapped seventy percent, forty percent, and ten percent by the second, third and fourth tiles, respectively; thus even if the second and the third tiles developed cracks, there would be no leakage.[citation needed]

Glazed tubular tiles used at the eave edge have an outer end made into a round shape top, often moulded with the pattern of dragon. Eave-edge plate tiles have their outer edges decorated with triangles, to facilitate rain-shedding.[citation needed]

Most kits for glazing tile come in white or off-white and include a brush or spray-on epoxy that adheres to high-gloss porcelain and ceramic tiles, sinks and bathtubs. Keep in mind that glazing products are not suitable for acrylic or exposed metal sinks because the epoxy will not adhere properly over time. Speaking of time, be sure to set aside about a week to complete the entire process. Properly preparing the surface is critical, so give yourself plenty of time. 041b061a72


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