Ceramic tiles for the street: how to choose and install

The technology of laying ceramic tiles on the street and the features of the choice of materialThe technology of laying ceramic tiles on the street and the features of the choice of material

If you decide to change the appearance of the house, make the stairs and the porch beautiful, finish the pool, then knowledge about outdoor porcelain and ceramic tiles will definitely come in handy. The article has all the necessary information about all aspects of the choice of finishing material. Let’s talk about how to lay ceramic tiles on the street. The fact is that not all tiles are suitable for installation outside the house.

What tiles are laid on the street

Outdoor decorative tiles are subject to the negative effects of the weather as well as the environment. A change in air temperature, from negative to positive, ultraviolet radiation, rain — this will negatively affect any building materials and tiles are no exception.

For this reason, it is important to note such points.

  1. Pay attention to porcelain stoneware and its water absorption, while it should be no more than 3%. In the manufacture of outdoor tiles, it is subjected to a pressing process, and therefore there will be very few microscopic pores and voids where water could flow, which means that the surface is not threatened by low temperatures.
  2. Frost resistance will guarantee the preservation of characteristics and quality even at a temperature of -500 degrees. For this reason, you can safely remove snow from it with a steel shovel, without fear of damaging the tiles.
  3. Chemical resistance makes it possible to treat the tiled surface with chemicals, for example, to eliminate slipping in the winter.
  4. At the same time, it must be resistant to wear and abrasion in order to minimize the chances of cracks or scratches.
  5. The tile resistant to light from the sun does not fade, even after a long operating period.

When choosing, it is important to pay attention to the thickness of the finishing material. The greater the thickness, the more durable and reliable the coating will be. It is due to the thickness value that the strength coefficient is formed. It can be easily calculated by knowing the area and height of the tile. The higher this indicator, the better it is suitable for installing it on the street. It does not depend on where the tiles will be laid — on the floor, stairs, walls and even in the pool. The anti-slip surface of the tile will be extremely important. If you do not take this factor into account, you can make a skating rink near the house with your own hands, and not a reliable coating. Appearance is important in the last place, because there are many different options, among which each person can find what he likes. Of all the types and types of tiles, the following options are most suitable:

  • Clinker tiles — resistant to frost, it can be used for paving the driveway to the house or arranging places where there is high traffic.
  • Ceramic is a great option for ennobling garden paths, home walls, pools, and other low traffic areas. This is a less fragile and stable material, and therefore it cannot be laid on an open veranda or terrace floor.
  • Porcelain stoneware — suitable for wall decoration, as well as for laying on the floor surface. Most suitable for private use.

And now let’s talk about the types of porcelain stoneware material.

The technology of laying ceramic tiles on the street and the features of the choice of material

Porcelain stoneware - suitable for wall decoration

Types of porcelain stoneware

Frost-resistant outdoor ceramic tiles can be made by 2 methods — by pressing and extrusion. Let’s single out several subspecies. Matte porcelain stoneware can be attributed to the best coatings. It is more resistant to wear and tear, as the top layer is not processed after the tile is made. The color range is wide. The device is used for floors, paths, walls and stairs. Glazed tiles are usually coated with a wear-resistant glaze after manufacturing. It is not particularly suitable for the street. Polished porcelain stoneware is also not suitable for laying outside heated rooms. The surface is carefully polished to a shine during the manufacturing process. The top layer thins and becomes less dense. It has a water absorption rate of more than 5%. Needs special care. It is required to constantly process by means of protective equipment. Semi-polished porcelain stoneware tiles are divided into types according to the appearance of the top layer. It is made so that it can be installed without seams. Due to the fact that the technology includes cutting edges on specialized equipment, this brings the edges to smoothness. Not suitable for outdoor installation.

Relief tiles, that is, the so-called structured porcelain stoneware, are also only partially polished. But at the same time, it differs from the first only in a deep relief on the surface. The lappated version involves polishing only certain areas. Thanks to this, the tile will become less slippery, will receive a higher coefficient of strength and a lower coefficient of water absorption. Lustrated porcelain stoneware is made by applying all kinds of additives to the top layer during manufacture. The surface looks beautiful if it is semi-gloss and has polished areas. This look is perfect for decoration. Of the presented varieties for laying on the street, technical matte porcelain stoneware is suitable.

Tools and materials

Any installation work, whether it be walls or floors, needs preparation. Installation requires the following tools:

  • Mortar in order to level the surface — plaster and putty.
  • Glue and grout specially selected for such work.
  • Ceramics, tiles, clinker tiles or porcelain stoneware.
  • Material for removing excess adhesive and grout.
  • Brushes and spatulas with different widths.
  • The mixer for construction work can be replaced with a drill with specialized attachments.
  • Bucket for mixing glue, plaster and grout.
  • Building level.
  • Linear devices for taking measurements.
  • Marker or pencil for marking.
  • A file for smoothing edges and cut pieces.
  • Electric drill with various attachments.
  • Angle grinder with diamond disc.
  • Tile cutter.
  • To maintain the distance between the plates, crosses.
  • Primer and waterproofing.

Now let’s talk about how to choose a grout.

The choice of grout for street tiles

Clinker tiles - resistant to frost

For a frost-resistant anti-slip outdoor ceramic tile that will be used outdoors for many years, the choice of adhesive and grout should be taken seriously. Look for an option that is suitable for outdoor use. Vertical pool surfaces or home walls require compounds that will not allow tiles to slide when laid. When choosing an adhesive material, one should choose compressive compounds with high deformation characteristics. Unlike a one-component type mortar, two-component ones are more suitable for outdoor use, as it is more stable. If you plan to lay tiles on a plastic, wooden or metal surface, then it is better to take an adhesive based on epoxy or polyurethane.

The fact is that it has much better grip with such surfaces than its counterparts. We recommend buying Cerizit, Mixonit and Kreps tile adhesives. Grout solutions can be based on various substances — silicone, rubber, cement, latex plasticizer and epoxy. They are made in the form of dry materials or a ready-made solution in a plastic bucket. For outdoor installation, it is better to use dry mixes, which will save money. The front of work is so large, and the open mixture quickly seizes from being outdoors. For this reason, mixing is best done in batches. We also recommend choosing moisture and frost-resistant grouts. To select a color to match the board material, use specialized paints, i.e. colors. Due to this, it is possible to achieve a shade that is similar to the main color of the tile, and therefore the seams will hardly be visible.

Preparing for installation

First you need to determine how much plate material is required. Make a laying plan. By the way, you should buy material with a margin of 10% so that you can adjust the size of the tile by cutting. If you purchase material back to back, it may turn out that there is not enough finish, and then the store will no longer have the required texture and color. It is better to take a little more, and the leftovers can be used for other work. Check the selected batch for the sameness of all plates in color and size. To get the perfect pattern, the tiles should be laid out on the surface without the use of an adhesive composition in order to correctly fit the dimensions. It is laid symmetrically from the center of the surface to be trimmed. To do this, draw a straight line. This will be the starting point for laying, so that in the end the tiles will be the same size at the junction with the wall. External corners can be decorated with solid tiles, but internal ones can be laid out from scraps. Surface preparation plays a huge role in the quality of work. When arranging the material on the floor, the base should be poured with a concrete screed to hide the water pipes, level the plane or create the required surface slope.

The base must be flat, dry, free of cracks and bulges. It is better not to rush to start work, let the concrete dry properly. Remember that 1 cm of screed dries out within 10-12 days. You can reduce the period of hardening and drying if you use special quick-drying mixtures. To strengthen the surface under the tiles, you can lay a mesh for reinforcement in the screed. After drying, the base is able to shrink, and therefore it will be necessary to check everything again using the building level. if the differences are significant, more than 0.5 cm, then level the surface again. If necessary, make a drain for melt water. The angle of inclination must be at least 2 degrees relative to the floor surface. When installing outdoor ceramic tiles on wall surfaces, you need to remove the old decorative coating and check that the plaster adheres well to the surface.

To do this, apply a crosswise line with a sharp object. At the intersection of the lines, you can see the peeling of the layers. If required, remove the old plaster, apply a new one and level the surface. Waterproofing is important to arrange only if you expect an intense impact on the surface of water and other types of aggressive liquids. If all is well, then you need to carefully prime the surface for perfect adhesion of the adhesive to the surface. The device of temperature-type seams is an important process. They should be done every 4-5 meters and filled with elastic substances. They will go into the screed and quite deep, and not just to the slab level. This must be done so that when the temperature changes in the environment, the surface does not begin to stretch and the surface does not swell. You can do without cutting the material, but this is extremely rare. Use a tile cutter to get the right size so that the edges are smooth and even.

On the tile, apply all the lines and with a cutting edge tool, draw a line in one place several times. After that, you can press a little with your hands with your hands and in this case the tile will evenly break off. So you can cut not only perpendicular and parallel lines, but also oblique ones. If you want to make a complex cut, then you can do everything with an angle grinder, and for round cuts, use an electric drill with a nozzle for cutting holes for sockets. After processing the edges of the tile blanks with a file to smooth the edges.


Installing tiles is a long and difficult task. Pay special attention to the little things to achieve the best result. Finishing the adjacent territory and walls with street tiles will make private ownership neat and tidy. You can do the work yourself, but only if you have at least minimal skills.