Will the flooring always look the same?

Please remember that images of product displayed on electronic devices may vary from the actual product, thus it is essential that you view these in person before final selection.

Should we seal grout?

One of the biggest issues with tiles is grout – it’s the necessary evil. Grout is basically discoloured cement. It is very porous, however there are some grouts that have additives to increase flexibility and reduce porosity. Sealing of grout can help, but it’s important to remember that sealing grout is a maintenance regime and should be constantly done. To help keep grout clean, dirt and dust should be vacuumed before moping, as it is normally dirty mop water that makes the grout dirty. Avoid soapy detergents you can buy from supermarkets and use phosphoric cleaners instead. Clean mop water regularly during the cleaning process – do not use one bucket of water for the whole house as you will only be putting dirty water onto your grout. There are grouts called Epoxy grouts. Visually they look like silicone. They tend to be used in commercial places like kitchens or McDonald’s. They are expensive and a specialist is needed to install.

Which tiles need sealing?

Glazed tiles, whether Ceramic or Porcelain, do not require sealing. The glaze acts as a decorative and protective wear coating and nothing – no dirt, grime or stain – can penetrate this, unless the glaze is damaged. Most Technical Porcelains, being mechanically treated, tend to have a protective sealer applied to the surface (being either NANO or Sealer Glaze). Tiny pores open up when Technical Porcelain is machined. These pores need to be filled to avoid dirt, grime or stains penetrating into the surface.

How long will the sealer last?

There is no definitive timing on this. Resealing tiles is no different to repolishing timber floors; however it is easier to see when the polish on timber floors has worn off. It depends on the traffic and maintenance, but a simple test is that if you drop water onto the tile and if it beads like that of water on a waxed car, then the sealer is still present. If the water spreads out flat, then the sealer has probably worn away from the surface and may need attention.

If I drop something is it going to crack or chip my tile?

Today, most tiles are laid on concrete slabs with a flexible adhesive. If the tile is laid with the correct bed of glue (i.e. with a notched trowel and not ‘dabbed’ on – a cause of drummy tiles), the tile will adhere to the substrate effectively and in most instances, the tile will not crack. In fact, if a bottle was dropped onto a correctly adhered tile, the bottle should smash before the tile cracks. In older homes built on timber stumps, where the substrate was made of cement sheet applied to timber or yellow tongue boards, there was a lot of movement and flex, therefore if the same bottle was dropped, the tile would probably crack before the bottle.

What is the warranty period I get with my tiles?

Surfaces By Hynes is one of Victoria’s leading importers and distributors of tiles. We pride ourselves on developing products to meet and exceed market expectations. We work closely with our manufacturers to ensure our products are tested for quality, performance, durability, and conformity to Australian Standards.

Under normal wear conditions and the suitability of product to the area it is used, Surfaces By Hynes guarantees that tile for 10 years. Please see our Warranty Information.

I have heard there are quality issues with Asian made tiles, is this true?

This is a common question and somewhat justified. 20 years ago, the Australian tile industry imported tiles mainly from Europe, but as the Asian region became more industrialised, the Europeans who developed the kilns and presses to make tiles started selling this technology to the Asian region. The initial volumes were for the domestic market, but as the Asian market became comfortable in production, they started copying what the Europeans were doing. The first lot of tiles coming into Australia from Asia were quite poor, however over time, with improved technology and tighter development controls, the products now coming out of Asia are equivalent to European standards of equivalent product. Sure, the Italians and Spanish were not all that stupid in selling the Asians all their trade secrets, so the best stuff still comes out of Europe, but for what is used in everyday residential homes, the Asian products are fantastic and Surfaces By Hynes guarantees it.

Is Porcelain better than Ceramic?

In essence, yes. Porcelain tiles are better than Ceramic in terms of strength, quality and finish options available, however ‘all’ tiles have a place in any construction process. Choosing a tile is a matter of specifications required, the look you want to achieve and ultimately budget. Overall, ‘tiles’ are the most durable, environmentally sustainable and healthy flooring option for your home. Whichever tile you choose, you will be investing in the long-term value of your home.

My child has asthma, is this flooring option good for them?

One of the great benefits of tiles is that these floors do not harbour dust mites or other nasties and are hypoallergenic.

How do you clean the floor?

Please view our Tile Care section, or view our Caring For Your Floors – Tiles Brochure.