Here you can learn the step-by-step process for installing stainless steel, aluminum and copper mosaic tiles. If you follow these simple instructions, you can also create a beautiful new surface from modern metal tile. The installation photos here show you how to attach the mosaic tiles to a wall with an upstand. You can also use the same procedure to install tiles on the floor. The only difference is that different adhesives are used for floors and walls.
PLEASE NOTE: This is a suggestion and should only be viewed as such. The publisher of this article is not liable for incorrect installation or damage caused by the procedure described here.
INSTALLATION TOOLS AND MATERIAL
All mosaic tile distributors and most hardware stores carry the items listed below. Check with the sellers if you can't find anything.
5/32 "trowel with V-notch for applying the adhesive (or similar trowel)
Enough mosaic tiles made of stainless steel, aluminum or copper to cover the entire area
Sufficient glue (for the wall or floor) for the entire area. Glue for standard ceramic tiles is 100% compatible with our products.
Enough grout for the entire area. Use quartz-free grout for metal or non-metallic tiles with a spacing of 0-1 / 8 "and quartz-containing grout only for tiles 1/8 - ½". For metallic or mirror tiles, we recommend quartz-free mortar, as otherwise the surfaces could be scratched when grouting.
Clean sponge or cloth
Two buckets, one for water and one for mixing the glue and mortar.
A floor saw with a motor (if cuts are to be made around certain objects, simply remove the appropriate tile from the substrate).
On request: a flat wooden board (2x4 to 6-12 "works well) and a hammer.
INSTALLATION: A STEP-BY-STEP PROCESS
Prepare the glue / mortar according to the instructions on the packaging. Apply it with the flat side of the trowel.
Apply mortar with the V-notch side to ensure an even depth.
Place the mosaic base mats on the prepared area with light pressure.
Place the remaining carrier mats at an appropriate distance from each other.
On request: Take your wooden board and the hammer and compensate for any differences in height by tapping gently.
After about 10-15 minutes, remove the protective film from the metal tiles. If this is made of paper, you can moisten it and peel it off. Plastic foils can simply be peeled off carefully.
Before the glue / mortar is fully set, you can make fine adjustments to make sure that all distances are even.
After 24 hours, you can carefully remove any glue residue or paper from the tiles with a brush. Then wipe the surface with a damp sponge.
Prepare your grout. Apply this with a joint rubber and press the compound evenly into all gaps. Do not use mortar containing quartz for metal tiles.
After 15 minutes to an hour (depending on the instructions on the packaging), take a cloth or damp sponge and remove the excess mortar from the tile surface. Work carefully so that you don't accidentally remove the grout from the gaps.
After the mortar has set (approx. 12-24 hours) use a clean cloth or sponge to remove the mortar film from the tiles. Use alcohol-based industrial solvents to remove any adhesive residue from the metal tiles.
Information on cleaning
0-24 hours after installation - no cleaning.
24 hours to 10 days - use clean, warm water and a pH-neutral cleaning agent that is suitable for tiles.
After 10 days - a mixture of sulphurous cleaning crystals and warm water, applied with a nylon brush. Follow the manufacturer's instructions and rinse with clean water.
PLEASE NOTE: Since the stainless steel tiles are made of metal (conductive), only qualified electricians should work around the tiled area.
CUTTING METAL MOSAIC TILES
Often, as the tiles are very small, you can simply cut through the substrate and remove individual tiles from where there are objects. But if unsightly gaps remain, you have to cut the individual tiles.
It might sound difficult, but it's relatively easy to cut metal tile. The majority of metal tiles are actually ceramic tiles covered with a 1-2mm thick metal plate. If the entire tile were made of metal, cutting would be very difficult if not impossible. The typical structure of a metal tile is shown below.
The simplest method is using a motorized saw, also known as a wet saw. Since the tiles are so thin, you can usually use an inexpensive saw that is available in most hardware stores. You can also rent such saws, which may be the cheaper alternative given the short period of use. However, we must point out that there is a certain risk involved in using these saws, as the tiles are very small and it takes practice and skill to use them properly.
Another alternative is to use a ceramic tile hand saw, which is also available at most hardware stores. It is important to know that there is one tool that is unlikely to work for metal-ceramic and that is a tile breaker / scoring tool. This is unsuitable for metal.
If you don't feel like cutting the tiles yourself, you can have them cut by a qualified craftsman.
F.CREATING THE EDGES OF THE METAL / GLASS MOSAIC INSTALLATION
A common question is about the finishing edges. There are several ways to visually finish off the edges. Upstands are usually in the shape of an L and ideal as a tile finish. These are available from hardware stores and can be attached with the same adhesive that you used for the tiles. These edge strips are often perforated on one side so that they can be attached to the wall with the adhesive. The edge remains open and the tiles are attached up to here. The gap is then grouted together with the tiles to produce a clean finishing edge.