Ceramic tiles ensure a fortunate combination of beauty and durability and can be a practical choice for kitchen countertops.
A kitchen countertop of made of ceramic tiles can fit into any indoor environment. It may well contribute to the unity of the room. There are many models, colours and designs for ceramic tiles, some models being combined with ornamental motifs. Glazed tiles are recommended because they withstand better the heat, scratches and cannot stains. If you want a ceramic tile kitchen countertop, you should know that they are extremely easy to mount, to maintain, are resistant to high temperatures and the prices are very affordable. But the surface is not perfectly smooth, the joints between the tiles can constitute an environment for bacteria, so it must be treated with special lacquers.
The main advantages of a ceramic tile countertop are:
-Easy mounting, the installation can even be done by the beneficiary
-Resistance to high temperatures
-Great variety of colours, textures and models
-Very affordable prices for tiles
-Resistance to humidity
The disadvantages of a ceramic tile countertop are:
- The surface is not perfectly smooth, so you cannot cut or stretch a roll directly on the countertop;
- Joints and stain and can be an environment for bacteria, if they are not treated with special lacquers for waterproofing
- They break easily heavy or sharp objects are tossed on them
Advice: Always buy some extra tiles and keep them to replace the damaged ones. To get a unique look at a reasonable price, combine common, cheap tiles with a couple of more expensive hand-painted ones.
A kitchen countertop made of ceramic tiles requires minimal maintenance. Generally, tiles need to be cleaned with dish soap, and, from time to time, with a disinfectant substance. Even when coated plates were neglected for a long time, a proper cleaning will restore their beauty and brilliance. And you don’t even need to wax or polished them.
Here are some guidelines to help preserve the beauty of ceramic tiles:
Maintenance of joint putty
After three to five days from the installation of ceramic tiles, plasters joints are to be treated with transparent silicone, which is resistant to moisture. Be careful to stop well the joint all over the surface. This way, they are kept clean. If the joints are dirty, apply a solution of chlorine mixed with water, which you must let to act no more than five minutes, then rinse thoroughly and wipe with a damp cloth.
Ceramic Tile Maintenance
-Wipe or vacuum ceramic tiles.
-Wash regularly the surfaces with a dilute solution of detergent. Special solutions are ideal for tiles.
-Rinse well, so that no traces remain, and then wipe with a dry cloth.
-Never use abrasive powder, in order not to scratch the finish ceramic tiles.
Glazed ceramic tiles
These are much easier to clean. You can use a solution composed of ¼ low foaming detergent and rinse well. This type of tile must be treated like enamelled porcelain, because it can be easily scratched. Therefore avoid using abrasive powders for cleaning. Occasionally, you can use a chlorine solution which will clean the dirt from the even.
Customized Ceramic Tile Kitchen Countertop
Because originality and customization are fashionable today, a solution was found for customizing even kitchen countertops: ceramic plates printed with the images you desire. Virtually any image can be printed on ceramic products to guarantee a unique effect. Image quality and its rendering in the smallest detail are guaranteed by the advanced technological process involving cutting-edge materials and devices. Printed tiles can be obtained using several processes: printing, photographic prints, hand painting or digital print. The latter is the new way of burning ceramic and was presented for the first time several years ago in the Cevisama Fair, where they had a pretty strong impact on the public.
THE PRINTING PROCESS
Depending on the particular printing process, the steps to be followed vary from case to case. Resembling is the fact that regardless of the type of print, tiles must be pre-pressed, burned, glazed and dry. If we talk about printing or photographic prints, the print is further made using electronically programmed machines. The print can then be dry or coated with a layer of glass (in the case of decorations with glass glaze).
Digital printing of ceramic tiles involves a series of steps, beginning with choosing a digital image or scanning the photo and transferring it on electronic support for further processing and retouching for possible problems. After this step, the image is printed on special paper using a printer that works with Ceramic Cartridge. Using a mill worker, a gelatinous substance is then applied directly on the printed paper. Again the image is transferred from paper onto the ceramic support and is then burned at a temperature of about 900 degrees Celsius, for a period of several hours. Regardless of the burning process, the quality of the tile will not be affected.
INSTALLATION, MAINTENANCE, RISKS
Printed stoneware and earthenware plates are as mounted just like regular plates, except that at the plasters stage extra care must be taken. Immediately after the application of putty, the excess material must be wiped from the surface, without using acidic substances such as the ones used for removing limestone or persistent dirt, nor abrasive products such as sponges, cloths, knives or palette knives.
Maintenance is as easy as the installation, you just have to be careful and detour around these products. Contact with water, steam or other cleaning products do not affect in any way the image that has a guarantee between 20 and 50 years, depending on which printing process was used. For a lasting, beautiful appearance it is recommended to take into account the manufacturers’ recommendations.