Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Over the last five years or so, the use of large format porcelain tiles has significantly increased, driven predominantly by the minimalist aesthetic achieved with a lack of grout lines. In fact, the products now being used routinely could more aptly be described as porcelain panels rather than tiles.

 

“With modern technology, panels are being produced that measure anywhere up to around 3.6m by 1.2m,” MAPEI’s Jennifer Price says. “Typically, these tiles or panels have a reduced thickness so rather than a traditional 10mm to 12mm thickness, these large format products are thin-set porcelain measuring around 3mm to 6mm.”

 

“The thin profiles and large sizes of these products have become very popular with architects, designers and clients because of the lack of grout lines these products require. Often, they are made to emulate natural stone and they have become so realistic that in many cases it is difficult to distinguish the two materials.

“For these reasons, large format porcelain is being favoured for high-end residential homes in bathrooms, kitchens and living spaces to create clean, contemporary finishes.”

 

However, it’s not only the finished aesthetic that’s appealing; the ability to simply lay thin large format porcelain over existing tiles is also a drawcard, particularly in renovations where it can be costly to remove existing tiling. “By using thin, large format porcelain in this way, you are not raising the existing threshold and therefore reducing the overall cost of the project,” Jennifer says.

Large format porcelain tiles are also a favoured product for external cladding, used often to create striking impact on contemporary facades in both residential and commercial projects.

 

However, while the technology has advanced to create thin, large format porcelain tiles, the adhesive products that were typically used for smaller tiles have been rendered impractical and therefore redundant when it comes to large format, Jennifer says.

 

“The large format tiles are a very different product in terms of the way they are installed. It’s for this reason MAPEI has developed a range of adhesive products designed specifically for use with large format porcelain tiles and panels.”

 

Known as Ultralite, this large format adhesive range is manufactured in a different way to traditional adhesive systems. “Typically, hardset cement adhesives were used for smaller porcelain tiles. These are heavy adhesives applied to the substrate and the back of the tile, which are not practical in the context of large tiles and panels. Using a heavy hard set adhesive with thin, large format tiles results in introducing a level of weight that is impractical to deal with and install effectively, Jennifer says.

 

“The solution to this is the Ultralite range, which instead of using heavy sands it is made with lightweight materials - with a makeup of synthetic resin and micro-spheres of recycled silica. A special polymer binder allows for an extended open time so the installer can work with the product for a longer time - a requirement with large format porcelain.”

 

The Ultralite range comprises three products: Ultralite S1, S2 and S2 Quick, which is a rapid set option.

 

“Ultralite S2 is a highly deformable adhesive. It’s ideal for facade work where the installation is exposed to the elements including freeze and thaw and sunlight. This product can cope with a lot of expansion and contraction. It’s also suitable for installation in areas where there is high foot traffic such as commercial flooring,” Jennifer says.

 

S1 in comparison is designed for interior applications, while S2 Quick is a highly deformable, fast setting product for areas that the installer needed to have back in service quickly after the installation of large format tiles or panels. “For example commercial areas that can only be closed for short periods of time.”

 

The Ultralite range has been available in Europe for about three years but is still relatively new in the New Zealand market. Launched here last year, it represents a new technology designed for a contemporary trend and evolving materiality in the design world.

 

Visit Mapei on ArchiPro here to find out more about the best adhesive options for your large format porcelain tile or panel installation.

 

MAPEI New Zealand

Day in  day out , construction sites all around the  world  can count on  Mapei In 2017 we are celebrating our eightieth anniversary: 80 years of experience...

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Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive
Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Over the last five years or so, the use of large format porcelain tiles has significantly increased, driven predominantly by the minimalist aesthetic achieved with a lack of grout lines. In fact, the products now being used routinely could more aptly be described as porcelain panels rather than tiles.

 

“With modern technology, panels are being produced that measure anywhere up to around 3.6m by 1.2m,” MAPEI’s Jennifer Price says. “Typically, these tiles or panels have a reduced thickness so rather than a traditional 10mm to 12mm thickness, these large format products are thin-set porcelain measuring around 3mm to 6mm.”

 

“The thin profiles and large sizes of these products have become very popular with architects, designers and clients because of the lack of grout lines these products require. Often, they are made to emulate natural stone and they have become so realistic that in many cases it is difficult to distinguish the two materials.

“For these reasons, large format porcelain is being favoured for high-end residential homes in bathrooms, kitchens and living spaces to create clean, contemporary finishes.”

 

However, it’s not only the finished aesthetic that’s appealing; the ability to simply lay thin large format porcelain over existing tiles is also a drawcard, particularly in renovations where it can be costly to remove existing tiling. “By using thin, large format porcelain in this way, you are not raising the existing threshold and therefore reducing the overall cost of the project,” Jennifer says.

Large format porcelain tiles are also a favoured product for external cladding, used often to create striking impact on contemporary facades in both residential and commercial projects.

 

However, while the technology has advanced to create thin, large format porcelain tiles, the adhesive products that were typically used for smaller tiles have been rendered impractical and therefore redundant when it comes to large format, Jennifer says.

 

“The large format tiles are a very different product in terms of the way they are installed. It’s for this reason MAPEI has developed a range of adhesive products designed specifically for use with large format porcelain tiles and panels.”

 

Known as Ultralite, this large format adhesive range is manufactured in a different way to traditional adhesive systems. “Typically, hardset cement adhesives were used for smaller porcelain tiles. These are heavy adhesives applied to the substrate and the back of the tile, which are not practical in the context of large tiles and panels. Using a heavy hard set adhesive with thin, large format tiles results in introducing a level of weight that is impractical to deal with and install effectively, Jennifer says.

 

“The solution to this is the Ultralite range, which instead of using heavy sands it is made with lightweight materials - with a makeup of synthetic resin and micro-spheres of recycled silica. A special polymer binder allows for an extended open time so the installer can work with the product for a longer time - a requirement with large format porcelain.”

 

The Ultralite range comprises three products: Ultralite S1, S2 and S2 Quick, which is a rapid set option.

 

“Ultralite S2 is a highly deformable adhesive. It’s ideal for facade work where the installation is exposed to the elements including freeze and thaw and sunlight. This product can cope with a lot of expansion and contraction. It’s also suitable for installation in areas where there is high foot traffic such as commercial flooring,” Jennifer says.

 

S1 in comparison is designed for interior applications, while S2 Quick is a highly deformable, fast setting product for areas that the installer needed to have back in service quickly after the installation of large format tiles or panels. “For example commercial areas that can only be closed for short periods of time.”

 

The Ultralite range has been available in Europe for about three years but is still relatively new in the New Zealand market. Launched here last year, it represents a new technology designed for a contemporary trend and evolving materiality in the design world.

 

Visit Mapei on ArchiPro here to find out more about the best adhesive options for your large format porcelain tile or panel installation.

 

MAPEI New Zealand

Day in  day out , construction sites all around the  world  can count on  Mapei In 2017 we are celebrating our eightieth anniversary: 80 years of experience...

Recommended reading
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Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain: selecting the right adhesive

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team

Large format porcelain tiles have surpassed traditional tiles in their popularity but they require a specific type of adhesives to install them effectively. We spoke to MAPEI about the difference between standard and large format adhesive products.

Over the last five years or so, the use of large format porcelain tiles has significantly increased, driven predominantly by the minimalist aesthetic achieved with a lack of grout lines. In fact, the products now being used routinely could more aptly be described as porcelain panels rather than tiles.

 

“With modern technology, panels are being produced that measure anywhere up to around 3.6m by 1.2m,” MAPEI’s Jennifer Price says. “Typically, these tiles or panels have a reduced thickness so rather than a traditional 10mm to 12mm thickness, these large format products are thin-set porcelain measuring around 3mm to 6mm.”

 

“The thin profiles and large sizes of these products have become very popular with architects, designers and clients because of the lack of grout lines these products require. Often, they are made to emulate natural stone and they have become so realistic that in many cases it is difficult to distinguish the two materials.

“For these reasons, large format porcelain is being favoured for high-end residential homes in bathrooms, kitchens and living spaces to create clean, contemporary finishes.”

 

However, it’s not only the finished aesthetic that’s appealing; the ability to simply lay thin large format porcelain over existing tiles is also a drawcard, particularly in renovations where it can be costly to remove existing tiling. “By using thin, large format porcelain in this way, you are not raising the existing threshold and therefore reducing the overall cost of the project,” Jennifer says.

Large format porcelain tiles are also a favoured product for external cladding, used often to create striking impact on contemporary facades in both residential and commercial projects.

 

However, while the technology has advanced to create thin, large format porcelain tiles, the adhesive products that were typically used for smaller tiles have been rendered impractical and therefore redundant when it comes to large format, Jennifer says.

 

“The large format tiles are a very different product in terms of the way they are installed. It’s for this reason MAPEI has developed a range of adhesive products designed specifically for use with large format porcelain tiles and panels.”

 

Known as Ultralite, this large format adhesive range is manufactured in a different way to traditional adhesive systems. “Typically, hardset cement adhesives were used for smaller porcelain tiles. These are heavy adhesives applied to the substrate and the back of the tile, which are not practical in the context of large tiles and panels. Using a heavy hard set adhesive with thin, large format tiles results in introducing a level of weight that is impractical to deal with and install effectively, Jennifer says.

 

“The solution to this is the Ultralite range, which instead of using heavy sands it is made with lightweight materials - with a makeup of synthetic resin and micro-spheres of recycled silica. A special polymer binder allows for an extended open time so the installer can work with the product for a longer time - a requirement with large format porcelain.”

 

The Ultralite range comprises three products: Ultralite S1, S2 and S2 Quick, which is a rapid set option.

 

“Ultralite S2 is a highly deformable adhesive. It’s ideal for facade work where the installation is exposed to the elements including freeze and thaw and sunlight. This product can cope with a lot of expansion and contraction. It’s also suitable for installation in areas where there is high foot traffic such as commercial flooring,” Jennifer says.

 

S1 in comparison is designed for interior applications, while S2 Quick is a highly deformable, fast setting product for areas that the installer needed to have back in service quickly after the installation of large format tiles or panels. “For example commercial areas that can only be closed for short periods of time.”

 

The Ultralite range has been available in Europe for about three years but is still relatively new in the New Zealand market. Launched here last year, it represents a new technology designed for a contemporary trend and evolving materiality in the design world.

 

Visit Mapei on ArchiPro here to find out more about the best adhesive options for your large format porcelain tile or panel installation.

 

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