hilst tiles are a hardwearing option for floors and walls providing a durable, easy to clean and stylish finish there comes a time when they need replacing. Here are four things to consider when deciding if your tiles need replacing.
Perhaps the most obvious sign that a tiled area needs replacing is if there are broken, cracked or even missing tiles. Broken tiles are bad news because it means that the tiles are no longer waterproof which, if not remedied will lead to damp penetrating underneath the tiles and mould growth. Even if you opt to repair a broken tile the damage may already be done if water has already got in and started damaging the adhesive or even worse, the wall or floor underneath which could lead to much more costly repairs in the future if the damp starts damaging the fabric of the building.
Does the floor rock slightly when you walk over it? Does the wall bend when you are cleaning it? Tiles that have become detached from the adhesive underneath will move and ultimately, could fall out which not only looks unsightly but also will allow water to damage the wall or floor underneath. Loose tiles in floors can also be a trip hazard if they are allowed to get to the stage where they protrude from the level of the rest of the floor. Even a slight wobble could be enough to cause an elderly relative to stumble and fall if they aren't expecting it.
If the grout between the tiles is discoloured or beginning to crumble now is a good time to consider replacing your tiles. Grout is the mortar between your tiles that binds the while surface together whether they are wall tiles or floor tiles. Both porcelain and ceramic tiles need good grout to complete the waterproofing and once the grout starts to fail, water will seep in between the tiles leading to damp walls, mould growth and ultimately the failure of the adhesive which will cause your tiles to lift. Mould can be especially dangerous for people with asthma or allergies and even small cracks in the grout can be enough to allow mould spores to take root and flourish.
Time for a change
Tired, dated tiling schemes make bathrooms and kitchens look tired and dated and tired, dated interiors can actually reduce the value of your home! Your house should reflect your tastes – not those of the previous owner twenty years ago.
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With a wealth of choice from designer tiles such as Versace or Phillippe Starck to plain and simple single colour ceramic or porcelain tiles there is sure to be something that can turn old or damaged tiling into a great feature! You can also take the opportunity to upgrade your tiles – for example by fitting underfloor heating or replacing smooth tiles with non-slip ones in areas you know to be prone to becoming slippery.
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