Saltillo tile is not a true ceramic tile, but it is treated as one, Saltillo floor tile designs are widely used in rustic southwestern home decors. You too can use the beautiful earthen colors of Saltillo tile to create the look and feel of old Mexico.
Saltillo is a terra-cotta tile that is made only in northern Mexico, but There are many Saltillo imitations made in Italy that are in competition with natural terra-cotta.The Saltillo floor tile design was introduced to Mexico by Spaniards hundreds of years ago. And The process of making this floor tile design remains the same.
Saltillo floor tile designs are made of natural clay. They are first shaped by hand and then dried in the sun. The tiles are then kiln fired to ensure hardness and durability. Depending on how the it's positioned in the kiln determines the color of the tile,
These beautiful earthen colored tiles can range in hues from pale amber to dark terra-cotta. Traditionally Saltillo floor tile designs are left unglazed, but some manufacturers sell them in a pre-treated or pre-sealed floor tile designs to increase their durability.
Saltillo floor tile designs vary in color and shape, but the majority of them range in various hues of reds, oranges, and yellows.
Saltillo floor tile designs have edges that are rough and not at all uniform, but this is what gives them their charm.
They are available in a variety of shapes, such as squares, rectangles, octagons and hexagons In sizes ranging from 4 to 12 inches.
Saltillo floor tile designs are not terribly durable or hard.
They can chip and crack when used outdoors in harsh climates, as the harsh weather can damage them. But Saltillo floor tile can do very well when used outside in very mild climates,
Sealing Saltillo Floor Tile Designs
A Saltillo floor tile installation will need to be sealed before and after grouting the tiles, as these tiles are highly porous and easy to stain.
Any grout or chemicals spilled on the tiles can damage them, so it's crucial to keep the them covered with paper until the floor tile installation is complete. It's also important to immediately wipe up any spills from the tiles.
Saltillo tile may be sealed with a penetrating tile sealant. The tile with sealant will maintain the natural look of the tile.
You can periodically test the tile sealant by putting a few drops of water on the tile in various places. If the water is absorbed, then another coat of tile sealant should be applied.
You can also use a film forming tile sealant that coats the tile and may give the tile a shiny appearance. As the tile loses its shine, another coat of sealant should be applied on top of the old sealant. If the finish becomes too worn or uneven, you can strip the tiles and seal them again.
Cleaning Saltillo Floor Tile Designs
You should maintain your saltillo flooring by cleaning it with a cleaner specially designed for your Saltillo floor tile surface.
Only damp mop the floor.
Never flood your saltillo floor tile installation, because this will damage the tiles.
After cleaning apply A polish that is especially recommended by the manufacturer. The polish will greatly extend the life of the sealant, which in turn extends the life of the tiles.
Tiling Tips For Saltillo Tile
*Make all cuts with a wet saw.
*Set in latex reinforced thinset mortar.
*For irregular shaped tiles, back butter each tile as you install it.
*Use a grid rather than Spacers.
*Use a Saltillo grout, as normal grouts are not made for the wider joints created by a Saltillo floor tile installation. Normal grout will crack and fall out of place.
There are many benefits to selecting a Saltillo floor tile installation Despite the few disadvantages. A Saltillo floor tile design is stunningly beautiful, and it offers not only the look but also the feel of the Mediterranean.
Whether you have a modern home or a country home, if you love a Mediterranean style Saltillo tile is the way to go.
These tiles may demand a little bit more to maintain, but many homeowners and decorators feel that it is well worth it for the beauty they bring and to have the look that they desire.