GENERAL: Crystal Tile is made of pure impervious glass with high temperature ceramic glazes. Glass differs from ceramic products. The glass tile installation instructions below are similar but not the same as for ceramic tile, so extra caution and attention to installation instructions is recommended. The tiles may be installed on interior or exterior wall areas, in wet or dry locations. Crystal Tile is not recommended for floors and should not be exposed to high abrasion, thermal shock and impact or installed over flexible surfaces.
These instructions are provided as a general guideline to cover most applications; some installations may require a different or more detailed specification. An experienced, professional tile installer who is familiar with the following setting procedures should perform the work. Please read and understand these instructions before beginning any work.
RECOMMENDATION: To prevent shrinkage or movement of the substrate to mirror through the tiles, the use of a crack suppression membrane is recommended.
INSTALLATION: Use a thin-set mortar formulated for interior and exterior wall installations. Spread the adhesive with a notched trowel following the manufacturer’s recommendations. Spread only as much adhesive as will be covered with the tile within 15 minutes.
Use plastic spacers whenever possible to leave even spacing between tiles of 2mm. Installation control joints where the tile abuts restraining surfaces and the perimeter of the tile work. Allow the adhesive to cure according to the manufacturer’s instructions (at least 24 hours). Grout with an unsanded grout to prevent scratching of the surface. Grout joints should be filled to approximately 2/3 of the thickness of the tile. This allows light to reflect on the internal surfaces of the tile.
NOTE: When back-buttering, it is common for each piece of Crystal Tile with the flat edge of the trowel to provide a void-free installation and good contact with the mortar bed. Carefully press the glass against the wall to prevent the notch marks in the adhesive from showing through the glass. When back-buttering is difficult, such as when installing small mosaics, flatting the notch marks in the thin-set with the flat end of the trowel, making sure not to remove the adhesive. Do not overbuild the thin-set under the glass – this will make the finished surface uneven and increase the possibility that the thin-set will shrink as it dries.
GROUT CLEAN-UP: Wipe excess grout off, first with a dry cloth, such as cheesecloth or any other lint-free cloth to remove excess grout on the tile surface. Follow up with a sponge and warm water. The less water you use, the better, as too much water can weaken the grout before it sets. Once the tile looks clean, to back over it with fresh water and a damp sponge to reduce surface film. Allow tile surfaces to dry for 15 minutes, then buff with a soft cloth until shiny. If you wait longer to clean and buff the tile, the resulting grout haze will become difficult to remove.
CLEANING & SEALING: Once the installation is completely dry (1-2 days) you can safely clean any remaining grout haze or residue with a tile cleaner and scrubbing pad. Once tile is cleaned and dry, seal grout with a good quality sealant to prevent mildew and staining.
CUTTING/DRILLING: Although Crystal Tile can be cut or drilled to meet your site dimensions with a simple glass scoring tool, keeping in mind that in many cases it may be easier and less expensive to mark your cuts or drills and take the tile to a professional glass shop for cutting or drilling.
Note: Cutting Thick, Etched or Textured Crystal Tile. Use a diamond blade designed for cutting glass on a wet saw. A blade for cutting glass has smaller diamonds than a tile blade, has a continuous rim and runs at a slower speed.