Production and Properties
“An appropriate refined clay shaped into the desired shape.” After drying it is placed in a kiln and fired. The typical firing temperature is around 1000°C. The iron content gives the fired body an orange/red, "terracotta" colour. Terracotta, if un-cracked, will ping if lightly struck. Terracotta has been used throughout history for sculpture and pottery, as well as bricks and roof shingles. In ancient times, the first clay sculptures were dried (baked) in the sun after being formed. Later, they were placed in the ashes of open hearths to harden, and finally kilns were used, similar to those used for pottery today. Because terracotta is both elegant and versatile, it has never gone out of fashion. Terracotta floors have been with us for centuries and can still be laid in various ways, each characterised by quality, durability and easy maintenance.
Advice and Suggestions
Terracotta tiles must be laid with gaps 8 to 10 mm wide, whether using mortar (soak the tiles in water beforehand, for at least half a day) or adhesive."For exterior floors, in the event that these are exposed to the elements and installed in areas with particularly extreme climatic conditions, the distance between expansion joints must not be more than 2-3 m.
Grouting and Sealing
Joints should be grouted using a sand and cement mix if larger than 15mm. For standard grout joints, it is recommended that a formulated grout product is used. Grout joints a little at a time in order to prevent the grout hardening on the surface of the terracotta; ensure the grout penetrates well into the joints, then smooth the floor with a trowel and brush with a damp sponge to clean the surface of the terracotta. Dependant on the porosity of the terracotta, a suitable sealer is recommended. Traditional Italian terracotta must be sealed with a Tile Doctor HP sealer (remember, sealing a terracotta tile will darken the surface). Sealing of a terracotta tile is not a once off procedure. It is recommended that the tiles are sealed at least once a year. Terracotta tiles become more beautiful with age and wear. This is the beauty of this traditional floor covering.
Our Terracotta is of Italian origin and available in 300x300mm format with matching stair nosing pieces.
Incredible value @ R329/sqm incl vat ( prices quoted are indicative )