Glass Tile / January 23, 2019 / Astrid Hachee.
Often glass tiles are translucent in appearance and any imperfection in either the setting application or the thinset is magnified. Whichever tile is being installed the substrate must be perfectly smooth using the manufacturers suggested setting materials and following their instructions exactly as written. Any "waves or grooves" in setting material are noticeable which is another reason a consumer needs to hire a contractor trained in glass tile installation. Another major quality difference between glass tiles is in the quality of the glass used during production. Oceanside Glass is famous for using recycled bottles in its production and provides consumers with a guide of how much post-consumer recycled material are used in their production and can assist with LEED accreditation. Additionally their state-of-the-art equipment for precision processing in batching changing furnaces and cooling molten glass is revolutionary.
Instead as art glass grows in popularity and the internet is increasingly adopted as a low-cost distribution and promotion mechanism we are seeing a trend towards glass art collectives and glass art dealers on the web. These organizations showcase the work of several artists; and provide services that range from simple sales channels to design support for integrated glass design for the home. An example of such a service is the Glass Artists Gallery . They have been helping designers and homeowners all across North America with art glass tiles lighting sinks and other functional glass art for years. They are not really a "brick and mortar gallery" but rather a resource for the trade and discerning homeowners for functional and architectural glass.
Their craftsmen work the glass by hand to transform each tile into a piece as unique as a snowflake. Bisazza glass tile uses the highest quality ingredients and constantly works to improve the production process to result in stronger materials with more vibrant colors. Shortcuts in production and compromises with materials result in a finished product lacking perfectly squared edges color quality and strength. To the untrained eye the product may look similar in display but it is in fact extremely inferior. Quality producers of glass tile may also apply a bevel to each of their tiles to allow for more level and consistent surfaces during installation.
The reason for doing this is when installing the glass tiles you do not want to see the trowel marks through the glass tiles. Another key to think about when installing the translucent tile is to make sure the surface behind the tile is white. If you have a painted kitchen and the walls are currently a dark or strong color that color could appear through the glass tile. If installing the translucent tile make sure the surface is painted white first and make sure the use of white thin set as well. The second type of glass is where the glass itself is a crystal type glass with the color backed on the back. Most 4mm or 8mm crystal type glass is clear and then the color of the tile is applied on the back of the tile giving it the color.