Atlantis Stone Ltd - your stone solution

DOING THE JOB RIGHT, EVERY TIME...since 2006

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Natural stone is a collective name for thousands of different types of stone, found and quarried throughout the world...

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This page has been created to post information that applies to "OUR EMPLOYEES ONLY" and inform them about various topics, which are mainly Project Management & Human Resources related.

STONE TILING

Stone tiles are a popular choice for flooring and sometimes walls in many homes. These natural tiles are not only beautiful, but they are hardwearing and long lasting. The three most commonly used stones in tile are granite, marble and slate.

 

Granite Tile

Granite tile is formed from volcanic rock. It contains flecks of the minerals quartz, feldspar and mica. These minerals give this stone tile its unique beauty. Granite comes in a variety of natural colors.
When cut and polished, granite makes a beautiful, highly durable stone tile. Many of the scratches that occur on the tile can be easily removed by polishing and buffing.
Beauty can have its disadvantages. When used as flooring, granite can be very cold underfoot. This could be an advantage, however, in very warm climates. It also becomes extremely slippery when wet. It may not be the best stone tile choice for floors in bathrooms or kitchens.Stone Tiles

Marble Tile

Marble tile is a beautiful veined tile that comes in a variety of colors. Most of the marble that is used in stone tiles in the United States is imported from Italy and Spain.
Marble is considered the most formal of the stone tiles. It is often used in entrance ways to homes and buildings producing a stunning effect. It is also the most expensive of the stone tiles.
When choosing marble tile, make sure all the tiles come from the same lot. There is a natural variance in color and veining in marble. When taken from the same lot, the tiles will complement each other. The difference in the color from separate lots, however, may not be complementary.
Like granite, marble can be cold underfoot and slippery when wet.

Slate Tile

Slate is a fine grained stone from metamorphic rock. The tiles produced from slate are more casual in appearance than granite or marble. They are also more porous and are not as slick when wet.
Slate tiles are naturally stain resistant and are recommended as interior and exterior stone tiles. Another advantage to slate tiles is that they maintain heat well. They are ideal for solar heated homes.
Like all stone tiles, slate tiles can become scratched in high traffic areas. They may periodically need to be buffed and waxed.

Travertine Tile

Like marble, travertine is a form of limestone that has been under pressure for thousands of years. The product of long-ago hot and cold springs and waterfalls, travertine is a beautifully banded and colored stone with a unique character and quality.
Among its most appealing characteristics are the interesting craters and depressions, created by streams of water that once flowed through the stone. Available in a wide range of colors, from reddish and coffee-colored to cream-colored hues, travertine has been used as a building material since ancient Roman times.
Its modern applications are equally dramatic and timeless.

Limestone Tile

Many of the world's most recognized landmarks were build with limestone, a favorite stone among architects. Composed primarily of calcite, limestone withstands the test of time and weathers exposure well.
Perhaps that explains why Ancient Egyptians used great blocks of limestone for many of their structures still standing today. With its smooth granular surface and minimal graining, limestone offers a variety of hardness.
But while durable and functional, you'll find that limestone brings a natural beauty to just about any setting.

The installation of all types of stone tiles is different than the installation of ceramic or clay tiles. If improperly installed, they are prone to cracking and other damage.
If you are unwilling to take a risk with your beautiful, expensive stone tiles, it is best to seek out a professional installer. Be sure to choose an installer who is qualified, experienced and insured.

 

Selecting the right tile

Let's look at some recommendations of the selection of tile:
Will the stone tile be polished or unpolished? These questions can be answered by the design requirements, personal taste, and the desired function of the finished surface. Generally, polished surfaces are easier to clean than unpolished surfaces.

Choosing and Buying Tiles:

Tiles are available in a huge range of colours, sizes and designs. Tiles are generally sold by the square metre, unless you are purchasing feature/tread/border tiles (see below).
The number of tiles you require will depend on the size of the area being tiled, with 10% extra allowed for breakages. Don't forget to buy extra tiles if you are using a complex pattern, and also as spares for future repairs/replacements.

Special tiles:

  • You can use border tiles for a more attractive finish to a plain tiled wall
  • Add interest by introducing features (patterned) tiles between plain tiles
  • Tread tiles are used for stairs and steps (for added grip)
  • Bullnose tiles are used to finish off the tops of walls (around bathtubs), window seals, and the edges of benchtops

Important considerations:

  • If you intend to tile a 'wet area', you should choose slip-resistent tiles.
  • If you are using tiles in high traffic areas, choose tiles that have a high abrasion index.
  • If you are using tiles for outdoors, ensure that tiles are water proofed.
  • Do not use wall tiles on floors and vice versa.

How to calculate the size of the area being tiled?

Multiply the width of the area to be tiled by the height (for a wall area) or by the length (for a floor area). From the total area, minus the area that will not need tiling ie. under fixed cupboards / units, shower bases, windows etc.

How many tiles would I need?

Use the table below to calculate the number of tiles you will need depending on the size of the tile you chose and the size of the area being tiled*. Add an extra 10% is normally allowed for to cover breakages. More tiles may be required if your tiling area includes a large number of special cuts (around doorways or fixtures etc) and/or has a complex layout pattern.

Site preparation (and sealing tiles)

Before starting any tiling job, the surface to which you apply the tiles must be cleaned. Wipe off excess dust, wash off any grease, scape off any paint, adhesives or varnish, hammer in protruding nails, and seal any holes/gaps in the floors or walls. Make sure the surface is solid and fixed, as any movement can cause tile breakage later on. Tiles are best applied to cement sheets or concrete slabs.
Note: You may have to roughen the tiling surface if it's too glossy ie. laminates on benchtops.

Screeding and Self-levelling top

Screeding is the method of levelling the floor in order to create a fall. The fall ensures that water wouldn't pond in any area (ie. allow for drainage). For example, a fall in a shower would direct the water to the waste outlet, a fall on an exposed balcony would ensure water doesn't flow back into the house/apartment. The size of the fall will depend on the volume of water that will flow over the surface. For instance, a shower will require a bigger fall than a balcony. Self-levelling is the method of pouring a 'self-levelling mixture' over an uneven surface and allowing the liquid to flow into and fill up any depressions, hence making the floor even.

Waterproofing the surface being tiled

Waterproofing protects the surface on which you lay the tiles. If a surface is not waterproofed, water on the tiles you lay can seep through to the layer underneath causing damage ie. seepage into a lower level apartment or underneath the house, and/or can cause wood rot/damp.

Sealing tiles

Some tiles can be bought sealed which generally makes them more expensive. Most tiles however, are porous and in order to protect their surface i.e. avoid staining and the build up of residues, they are generally sealed with an acrylic sealant. Certain surfaces such as slate, require specialised sealant products, contact your distributor for advice.

Establishing reference lines (tile layout)

Floors


Tile Layout

Tile Layout

 

Walls

Always start laying the tiles from a fixed horizontal line drawn using a spirit level. Never assume that floors or ceilings are straight or that corners are at perfect 90 degree angles. Ensure that the row of tiles you lay end to end will finish with tiles requiring large cuts as its is much easier to cut a tile in half than cut a very thin strip of each tile at either end. You must always allow for spacing between tiles (for grout) and for sealants (in corners) to allow wall expansion and contraction.

 

A sensible choice...

 

Using a stone floor finish with our natural stones means choosing:

  • A large variety of colours, grades, placements, and finishes.
  • Simplified and economic maintenance.
  • A very good resistance to wear, even when the flagstone is not very thick.
  • A well known technique of placement, either by gluing, or more traditionally, by sealing.
  • The possibility of including sound and thermal insulation.
  • A wide and accessible range of price.

The choice of the stone:Floor tiles

The choice of the stone will be done according to the expecting use and the characteristics of the stone.
Realtors know it to be a fact, but did you know that when visitors enter a home the first thing they notice is the floor. Why not make your design statement - in stone! Let us help you choose from over 500 beautiful natural stones that will make your foyer, hallways, living areas, kitchens and baths, rooms to remember.

Different stones for different uses

 

A stone will be chosen according to its future use. The choice of the stone depends on:

  • Traffic use (from individual traffic use to public severe traffic use).
  • Internal or External use.
  • Climatic or geographical restrictions: snow, mud, sand (for external use).
  • Environment (modern or traditional environment).
  • Use of soundproofing insulation
  • Schedule of work.

Different characteristics for different stones

Each of our stones has its own characteristics, and we advise to take into account these specific characteristics when making a choice.

Each of our stones has been identified according to several physical characteristics keys:

  • A speed of sound.
  • Visible mass density.
  • Surface hardness.
  • Porosity... etc.

These identifications result in an AFNOR identification number. This number classified the stone according to its resistance, from very soft (n° 2 and 3) to soft (n° 4 and 5), medium (n° 6 and 7), hard (n° 8, 9 and 10), and very hard (n° 11, 12, 13 and 14).

Main criteria of choice:

  • Traffic considered (heavier the traffic is, harder the stone must be). We advise a stone of AFNOR hardness higher than 6 for individual traffic use, than 8 for public medium traffic use, than 10 for public severe traffic use.
  • Aesthetic aspect of the stone.
  • Selected finish of the stone.

Different choice of finish

The choice of the finish depends on several criteria:
  • Aesthetics.
  • Comfort of walking.
  • Resistance to wear.

Most common finishes for internal flooring:

  • Honed: it gives a glossed aspect. It is recommended for areas exposed to intense traffic, such as stores, lobbies. In the long term, due to the wear caused by the traffic the colours of the stone become almost as clear as with a polished finish. It has the advantage of not making the eye tired as quickly as with a bright polished finish.
  • Matt Polished: between honed and bright polished.
  • Bright Polished: emphasizes the specific characteristics of the stone: colours, fossils, veining, and shells. However, it is a finish very vulnerable to acids, scratches and wear.
  • Antic finish: currently very fashionable. We offer different antic finishes which offer the patina and wear of time of secular floors.

The weight

It depends on the thickness of the flagstones.

  • thickness 1.5 cm = 37.50 kg/m².
  • thickness 2.0 cm = 50 kg/m².
  • thickness 3.0 cm = 75 kg/m².
  • thickness 4.0 cm = 100 kg/m².
To see more about flooring and how to prepare your surface for flooring, see our "Floor Installation" page.

Wall Tiling...

Now natural stone is as affordable as it is beautiful. Atlantis Stone can supply you with a huge selection of marble, limestone, travertine and granite for the very affordable price. And the installation techniques are virtually the same as for ceramic. So you can add the elegance of natural stone to your bathroom or other living area .

Most common queston:Limestone Wall

 

INTERIOR WALLS-RESIDENTIAL

A great deal of latitude can be allowed here with many different options especially in a dry area. pecial or decorative tile can be used here.
Stone tiles with fissures, crevices, or voids can easily be used here depending on the project requirements and design.

INTERIOR WALLS-COMMERCIAL

Many tiles are suitable and the latitude enjoyed in the residential application is similar. However, the tile selected should be somewhat tougher and be able to resist more frequent cleaning and possibly harsher chemicals used to remove graffiti and the like.

EXTERIOR WALLS

These areas are considered "wet" areas and should be treated with the type of tile recommended. Classic wall tile should not be used on exteriors due to its high water absorption rate.
In addition, tile that is freeze/thaw resistant should be considered in many areas.

SHOWERS/TUBS

Since these are generally considered wet areas, a tile in the vitreous or impervious class should be used. Remember that the glaze on wall tiles typically renders that surface impervious to water. Therefore they too can be used in wet areas. However, slip resistance should certainly be considered on shower floors.
Most stone tiles are suitable for this application with a caution for shower floors when tiling with polished stone relating again to slip resistance.