Few items in the home are as versatile as bathroom tiles. They are available in a wide variety of shapes, colors and sizes, with different finishes and are made from various materials. Tiles can be made from ceramic, terra cotta clay, PVC, glass or other materials.
Tiles are used to cover backsplashes in bathrooms and in kitchens. Bathroom walls, particularly bathtub and shower walls are covered with tiles because they are easy to clean. The finishes are impervious to mold, moisture or insect damage. Because of their strength, tiles make a good choice for flooring as well. They are also used to create long lasting countertops in kitchens.
Tiles can be found in bathrooms and kitchens all over the world. Many companies that sell bathroom hardware, fixtures and supplies also carry a selection of tiles. For example, ABL Tile & Bathroom Centre in Sydney is one such company.
Bathrooms and kitchens are not the only places tiles are useful. They can be used to create custom furniture such as tile covered tables, dressers, desks and more. Gift boxes or trinket boxes can display hand painted tiles on the lid and perhaps the sides. Outdoor kitchens can also feature tiled counters and backsplashes.
It is not hard to install tiles on various surfaces. The proper tile adhesive is spread over the surface, a few square feet at a time. When large areas are covered, level and straight lines are often marked. Curved lines may be drawn for an interesting effect. The tiles are set in place by hand and the adhesive is allowed to dry for at least 24 hours. Grout, either in a contrasting or similar color, is then applied between the tiles to create a waterproof barrier over the surface. Once dried, the excess is removed and the area is ready for use. Sealers can be painted over the grout to retard mold growth and prevent staining.
Tiles will last up to a hundred years; many have lasted much longer with proper care. The average homeowner or DIY'er can install tile in a bathroom, saving hundreds to thousands of dollars in labor costs.