Crackle glaze tiles are created by the top glaze being put through a process called Crazing.* These can be seen because light reflects off the surfaces of the gaps.
Because the glaze has microscopic cracks and gaps, dirt and grout can get in to these and cause staining. To solve this we have a special sealer for crackle glaze tiles that, goes into the microscopic cracks to prevent dirt and grime from staining the tiles.
It is also recommended to seal before grouting or cutting the tiles, as grout can also enter these small cracks and become almost impossible to remove. There are different methods for sealing dependent on what colour grout is being used.
Dark coloured grout.
After 24 hours after laying tiles in to the adhesive, apply sealer evenly using a micro-fibre cloth and several coats, a minimum of at least 3 coats should be applied. Allow 2 hours drying between coats and do not buff. Then leave for 24 hours to fully dry.
Light coloured grout.
After 24 hours after laying tiles in to the adhesive, apply sealer evenly using a micro-fibre cloth and leave for 20 minutes after application, buff well to work it into the crackles of the glaze. Leave to dry for 2 hours and apply second coat using same method. Then leave sealer to dry for a minimum of 12 hours.
*Crazing occurs in regions of high hydrostatic tension, or in regions of very localized yielding, which leads to the formation of interpenetrating microvoids and small fibrils. Other methods include temperature changes, mostly from when in the kiln the tiles are removed when still hot so they cool quicker this causes the cracks to form, this is called thermal shock.
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Please note that this information is offered as general guidance only and without guarantee. Your specific circumstances may need an alternative approach. In case of doubt, any process should be tried out in an inconspicuous area before general application.