When cement tiles ship from the factory, they can be "polished" or "unpolished". Here are answers to the most frequent questions about polishing cement tile.
- What is polishing?
Polishing is a mechanical process that uses a high-speed rotary buffer, mild abrasives and water to "polish" each cement tile. The process simulates the "patina" a cement tile might develop after years of being cleaned with wax and water.
- Are polished tile really shiny and slippery?
No. Polished tiles have a moderate, flat satin look and are not as rough to the touch. Polished cement tiles are acceptable for floor applications. It should be noted that while the coefficient of friction of a polished tile is within the acceptable range of slip resistance, it is different than that of the unpolished tile.
- Will polished tiles have a longer life?
No. Polishing the tiles does not increase the life of the tiles.
- Do polished tiles require more maintenance since high-tread areas will wear down the "polish" and produce "walking lanes" over time?
No. Factory polishing is not like wax on a hardwood floor. The factory polishing process does not create a "layer of polish" on top of the tiles. If not properly maintained, tiles may develop shiny "walking lanes" in high traffic areas. To avoid this problem make sure the floor is evenly maintained and cleaned.
- What is the advantage to polishing tiles?
Once installed, the tiles immediately create a "lived in" feel with a softer satin sheen. This same effect will occur with normal care over time.
Cement Tile Polishing Video
Watch Cuban Heritage Cement Tiles being factory polished.
Cement Tile Installation & Care Guidelines
To find out more about the proper installation, care and maintenance of cement tiles, go to our web site and read:
Installation, Maintenance, and Care of Cement Tile
Avente Tile thanks the kind folks at Aguayo Cement Tiles for sharing their insight about polishing and allowing us to tour their cement tile factory and video tape the polishing process.