How to Apply Colored Tile Glaze

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Refresh the look of your tile by changing the color of the tile surface with a colored tile glaze. To color tiles, manufacturers bake the original glaze into the tile surface in factory, creating a color coating that lasts the life of the tile. Recreating this process is impossible for the homeowner. Glazing your tile is possible through a paint-like application process. You can recolor the tile in any way you choose, matching the style or decor of the surrounding room.

Things You'll Need

  • Utility knife
  • Putty knife
  • Silicone digester
  • Nylon brush
  • Acid paste
  • Paintbrushes
  • Rubber gloves
  • Tile cleaner
  • Sponge
  • Scrub brush
  • Cloths
  • Degreaser
  • Masking tape
  • Epoxy primer
  • Acrylic-urethane resin
  • Polyurethane coating product
  • Caulk
  • Dust mask
  • Remove any caulking from the tile joints by cutting through the caulk with a utility knife and then stripping it off with the edge of a putty knife. Brush the caulking with a silicone digester to soften the caulking before removal if the material does not pull away from the wall. Brush the tile edges where the caulking was located with a nylon brush to remove any leftover residue.

  • Etch porcelain tiles with an acid paste to create a porous surface that will accept the glaze. Apply the paste to the tile face with a paintbrush. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the length of time to allow the paste to remain on the tile to avoid pitting from over exposure. Wear rubber gloves when working with the acid to avoid burns and dispose of the brush after use. Rinse the surface of the paste with clean water before continuing.

  • Clean the tiles with cleanser formulated specifically for your tile type. Use a sponge to wash away any dirt or debris from the tile, switching to a scrub brush if the dirt proves difficult to remove. Dry the tile with a piece of cloth, and then apply a degreaser to remove any oil deposits. Rinse the surface of the tiles with clean water to remove cleanser residue, then pat dry with a clean cloth.

  • Place a strip of masking tape along the edges of any surfaces adjacent to the tiles to protect those surfaces from the glaze. Press the tape firmly in place, checking that there are no gaps along the tape edges.

  • Apply a layer of epoxy primer to the tiles with a paintbrush to create a surface on which the glaze will adhere. Brush the coat of primer on using two thin layers to ensure complete coverage while avoiding drips along the tile surface. Allow the primer to dry completely before continuing.

  • Apply colored acrylic-urethane resin to the tile with a paintbrush. Brush on two layers of the resin, concealing the primer completely. Apply a level coating of the resin, covering the tile in an even layer to keep the color consistent. Allow the resin to dry completely.

  • Cover the resin with a layer of polyurethane coating to protect the resin. Brush the coating on in two layers to create color depth and to add the glazed look to the tiles. Wait 48 hours for the sealer to dry.

  • Replace the caulk in the joints where removed. Apply a bead of caulk to fill the joints and then level the caulk out with the tip of a moistened finger. Allow the caulk to dry for 36 hours and then remove the masking tape.

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