Did you know that Saltillo tile can be installed in an outdoor environment? Recommendations are different for varying weather climates but this article should answer most of your questions. If not, contact us for more details! Call 512-260-9111 or email [email protected] . We are the SALTILLO TILE EXPERTS!
Hot and Cold Temperatures Alone do not Tamper with the Terra Cotta Clay Tiles
The clay comes from Saltillo, Coahila Mexico where the weather can get cold, and it definitely gets hots! These Mexican floor tiles are burned in a kiln so heat is no problem. At Rustico Tile and Stone, we even have people use raw clay tiles as baking stones in their ovens.
Freezing and Wet conditions Matter
If you live in a climate where it freezes and precipitation exists, then you need to take certain measures to care for your terracotta tile.
The first thing to consider is an underlayment for water protection….is there a water barrier to prevent water from getting into the back side of the raw saltillo clay. Even if your saltillo floor tile is sealed, the back side is not sealed or protected from water absorption. If water seeps into the clay and freezes, it can expand and crack some tiles. This may not happen to all of your mexican tiles but it can happen.
Secondly, is your tile and grout sealed very well with GOOD sealer. If you can make the top of your saltillo floor water-proof (and protect the bottom side from water absorption), then you can install it outdoors in a freezing climate. However, poor quality sealer will not suffice. You need a good quality top coat sealer for the tile and grout (something ike our WB or GREEN sealers). A good sealer should last several years but it needs to be inspected prior to every winter. Reapplication may be necessary if sealer has worn away.
Saltillo Tile can be Used on Driveways and In Carports
It’s imperative that the tile is installed correctly and we recommend sizes of 12×12 or smaller for these purposes because they have less curvature than the larger tiles. Remember that authentic saltillo is handmade and do not always lie perfectly flat. In concave areas of the terracotta tile, the backside may need to be buttered with extra thin set to maintain the integrity of strength in this type of floor. In lieu of saltillo tile, some of our clients opt for using a cut stone such as Cantera architectural stone. With either material, a good quality topcoat sealer will maintain the look and protection of the surface of these beautiful floor tiles.
Check back later for more useful information about Saltillo Mexican tile. If you have specific questions, don’t hesitate to call one of our experienced experts at 512-260-9111 or email [email protected] Happy floors!