Mission Tile West

Tile Terms Dictionary A – C: Learn What Tile Terms Mean

Tile Terms Dictionary A – C: Learn What Tile Terms Mean

The truth about tiles is that figuring out how to install them, which tiles to choose, and how to take care of them can be a challenge. That is why you have Mission Tile West to help you with all your tile design needs. While we are always happy to answer questions, we also know our clients like to have handy access to some of the most commonly used terms.

Read on for definitions of some of the terms from A to C that we often use or are often used when tile purchase and installation is described. Then contact us at 626-799-4595 or stop by to see our exceptional options yourself.

  • Absorption. This refers to the percentage of moisture that is absorbed compared to the weight of the tile.
  • Abrasion resistance. How able a surface is to resist being worn away by rubbing, friction, wear, and tear is known as abrasion resistance.
  • Accelerator. Any substance that is added to grout, concrete, or mortar that boosts the rate of hydration, increases the rate of hardening of strength development, or shortens how long the substance takes to set.
  • Acid wash. Treatments that are sometimes applied to the face of a tile to give it a texture or finish that has a distressed look. While chemical processes were once used (hence the name) today mechanical methods are generally used to texture stone.
  • Adhesive. A substance used to bond tile to the surface it is being installed on.
  • Arris. Any angle or edge where surfaces meet. Examples include raised edges and moldings.
  • Back-buttering. This involves slathering the back of a tile with a substance known as thinset. The purpose is to ensure that mortar coverage is regular and to prevent hollow areas – which together helps lower the chance of cracked tiles. This is also used to help make sure that installation is level.
  • Backing. Whatever material is used as a base on which a finished material will be installed is called backing.
  • Backsplash. The section of wall between your countertops and upper cabinets.
  • Battiscopa. An Italian term, this means bull nose trim piece
  • Blending. When you are properly positioning floor slabs, or tiles, based on their color, you are blending.
  • Bisque. There are two layers to glazed tile. The top layer is the glaze and the largest layer, or the body of the tile, is called the bisque.
  • Body. The largest part of a ceramic product.
  • Caulk. Soft, water-resistant material made from plastic that is used for sealing joints.
  • Ceramic tile. A tile made from clay (or a clay mixture).
  • Coefficient of Friction (COF). A number that refers to how slip resistant a tile is.
  • Colored grout. Grout that is commercially prepared to have a pigment.
  • Crazing. Cracking that happens when glaze is fired or on other ceramic coatings due to tensile stress.

These are just some of the terms that are often involved in the tile installation and purchasing process. Do you have questions about other tile products or procedures? Contact Mission Tile West at 626-799-4595 for answers.