With their rich colors and dynamic shapes, ceramic tiles are one of the most beautiful flooring options out there. Unfortunately, they're also one of the most fragile and can crack or break for a multitude of reasons. But don't worry--what's easy to break is easy to fix. With a little waterproof marine epoxy and paint to match the tile, your floor can look like new for decades.
Things You'll Need
- Clean cloth
- Blow dryer
- Paper plate
- Clear-drying, waterproof marine epoxy
- Oil-based primer/sealer
- Tile-colored, oil-based, high-gloss paint
Reassemble a Broken Tile
Clean the broken area and all loose pieces with soap and water. Rinse the tile thoroughly to remove any residue.
Dry the pieces with a clean cloth to remove surface moisture, then use a blow dryer to dry everything thoroughly. Ceramic is very porous and retains much more water than appears on the surface, so continue to blow dry it for 15 minutes after the tile appears dry. If air-drying the tile, let it stand for at least 24 hours.
Mix equal parts of the two-part waterproof marine epoxy on a paper plate or scrap of cardboard. Use a toothpick to spread the epoxy on all the broken areas in a thin, even layer. Cover both sides where the tile will fit together, because the epoxy works best when it can bond to itself. Let the pieces stand separately until the epoxy gets tacky, which will take about 2 minutes.
Assemble the tile. Gently but firmly push the pieces together and wipe off any excess epoxy. Let the epoxy cure for 24 hours.
Fill in Gaps or Chips
Wash any gaps or chips with soap and water, then dry them with a clean cloth and a blow dryer, just as you did in the first place with the broken tile.
Paint a thin coat of an oil-based primer/sealer onto the unsightly areas of the gaps or chips. Do not to let it pool or get on any of the tile's surface. Let it dry for at least 2 hours.
Cover the primer with a thin layer of oil-based, high-gloss paint in a color that matches the surface color of the tile. Let the first layer cure for 24 hours, then add a second layer, if necessary, and cure it again.
Mix a new batch of epoxy and carefully fill any holes or gaps to the level of the tile's surface. Let it cure for 24 hours.
Tips & Warnings
- If your tile is in many pieces, figure out how they fit together before applying epoxy.
- Read the manufacturers' instructions for your specific brand of epoxy, primer and paint before handling.
- Never let children handle epoxy.
- Photo Credit Tile wall image by Pontus Edenberg from Fotolia.com
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