Sealing your tiles is a crucial step in every tiling project when using porous tiles. The process ensures your new wall or floor tiles last the test of time and can stand up against daily wear and tear as the protective coating penetrates the tile and works to prevent the build-up of dirt on the surface of both tiles and grout. There are a few things to understand and consider when starting on a new tiling project, from which specific types of tiles actually require sealing, how often the process should be completed and of course, which types of products are best to use.
Why do tiles & grouts need sealing?
Sealing your grout, floor and wall tiles will ensure a stronger overall finish, effectively boosting both the tile and grout’s defence against grime, dirt, liquid spills and erosion. The sealer creates a protective layer over the finished tiles and grout, which will also make the surface easier to keep clean over time, allowing for complete ease of maintenance in your new design. Grouts and porous materials are especially susceptible to staining and absorbing moisture from liquid spills which can lead to significant deterioration and erosion over time. A quality sealer however, will protect your tiles and grout to assist in maintaining their strength and integrity.
Stylish and on trend, cement tiles provide a wonderfully tactile surface finish in any area of the home. Being a porous material, concrete requires sealing both during and after installation to ensure the surface is not compromised or damaged. Our spectacular Pavimento concrete tiles by Greg Natale are available a wide assortment of unique patterns to help you create the perfect feature in your next project.
Which types of tiles need sealing?
In general, all natural stone products will require sealing to protect against any potential staining or damage. This includes marble tiles, slate, limestone, granite, travertine and terrazzo as well as man-made products that are also porous in nature such as terracotta and concrete tiles. Although most porcelain and ceramic tiles do not normally require sealing, it is always important to check the manufacturer’s recommendations as there can be some exceptions with these materials. Our experienced and knowledgeable team at Perini Tiles will advise you if your selected tiles will require sealing and can recommend the best products to suit the material.
How & When should I seal my tiles?
Your tiles will require sealing both before and after installation as well as ongoing maintenance throughout their lifespan to ensure the tile’s longevity and overall durability over time.
Natural stone products such as marble tiles will require sealing in order to ensure their longevity and durability. The Greg Natale Marmo collection includes a striking combination of light and dark varieties of natural marble laid in intricate, geometric patterns to create the ultimate statement in your project.
It is important to note that some grouts and glues can often stain or discolour certain tile materials and as such, your tiles will need to be sealed prior to application on your floors or walls so as to not come into contact with products that may cause any damage during the installation process. Allow approximately 24 hours between tile installation and grouting to ensure a quality finish is achieved and a further 48 hours after applying your grout to ensure it has completely dried before applying sealant to the grout lines.
The grout must be completely clean and dry before applying sealant to ensure a consistent finish is achieved. Should any area of your grout be cracked or chipped however, perform any necessary touch ups before waiting a further 48 hours to proceed with applying your sealant.
Terrazzo tiles are created using chips of marble, glass and other natural stones that are embedded in concrete to create a varying and colourful pattern. This porous surface however, requires a sealant to be applied to ensure the product’s strength and integrity over time.
Over time, you can test your tiles and grout to see if they require re-sealing by splashing some water on the surface. If after several minutes the water droplets have absorbed into the surface or caused any slight discolouration, it is advised that a suitable sealant be reapplied.
Perini Tiles Recommends:
Different types of tiles will require specific sealers. Perini Tiles stocks several different sealing products and our team will be able to recommend the best fit for your own individual needs.
For your reference, the following products are recommended for use:
Cement Tiles: Cement tiles are porous in nature and as such, will require a protective sealer to ensure the material’s stability and resistance to staining and damage. Perini Tiles recommends Fila Natural-Effect Protective Wax. This unique type of sealant creates a smooth natural finish over your cement tiles that can also be polished to achieve a modern satin look. Effectively repelling dust and dirt, this specialised wax sealant provides the perfect solution for protecting porous cement tiles while also maintaining the surface’s sleek surface.
Natural Stone Tiles: Natural stone products are also porous in nature, requiring a protective sealer that can be reapplied over time to ensure their strength and durability is maintained. Perini Tiles recommends Dry Treats Stain Proof sealant. This sealant includes tiny molecules that penetrate deep into the pores of your natural stone tiles to create a strong liquid repelling barrier that will protect your tiles over time.
General use & Grout: Suitable for grouts as well as natural stone tiles, our Meta Crème™ sealer penetrates deep into the tile and grout’s structure to create an incredibly strong barrier against liquids, oils and dirt, providing ongoing protection against staining and more serious issues such as efflorescence and freeze-thaw damage. This sealant can be used both in both indoor and outdoor applications, providing an excellent all-purpose choice.
Perini Tiles stocks a variety of sealants to suit your project’s individual needs ensuring you can enjoy your new tiles for a lifetime. Our team can walk you through all the different options and recommend the very best products to suit – Visit our Richmond Tile showroom or contact us here for more information on finding the right products for your tiles.