terracotta installation guidelines

Antique Terracotta and French Reproduction Terracotta Installation Guide

Antique Terracotta and French Reproduction Terracotta tiles are unglazed, non-vitreous terracotta tiles, which are hand-formed and fired.


Antique Terracotta

Our Antique Terracotta tiles, also known as parafeuille are reclaimed from architectural structures from the South of France. Offered in both 6” hex and 6” squares, these terracotta tiles are perfect for any project in need of the extreme color and texture variation inherent in authentic antique French terracotta paving.

French Reproduction Terracotta

Created from the same simple methods used 100’s of years ago for the production of modest terracotta, our French Reproduction Terracotta is offered in a Belgian Black shade that is a varying 3/4” – 1” thickness and only available in an 8” square. Extreme variation of surface texture and color are to be enjoyed.

Installation recomendations

It is recommended to always defer to your trade consultants (architect, engineers) and your tile contractor.

TCNA guidelines and ANSI A108, 1118, & A136 – Version 2013, printing reference 2013.1 are to be used as references for substrate preparation and tile installation methods for standard ceramic tile projects and are required for proper installation.

Always prepare your substrate to allow for this type of flooring. As with any tile installation, clé recommends that all situations falling outside the standards addressed by TCNA and ANSI recommendations be addressed, resolved and approved only by the project architect or engineer.

General installation tips:

First, clean the excess dust from the tiles and be sure to pre-seal your tiles with a sealant such as Miracle 511 porous plus. This will support the tiles through installation and grouting.

*Be sure to keep the sealant only on the surface so that it doesn’t act as a bond barrier to your adhesive.*

We recommend the use of thin set methods using at least a ½” grout joint and avoiding the use of spacers.

Natural grey grout is the recommended color for terracotta or a dark charcoal for the Belgian Black terracotta.

Product usage

Indoor and outdoor applications are perfect for walls and residential and commercial flooring. Miracle 511 Porous Plus can support the tiles in freeze/thaw locations only if used above grade and on vertical applications where the tiles have an overhang.

Maintenance and sealing 

Proper maintenance of any tile is critical to the upkeep of a lasting installation. Upon completion of the tile installation and grouting, it is recommended that a penetrating sealer be used, again, to maintain the finish of terracotta. This limits the need for cleaning and maintenance. The type of sealants available will allow for a variety of finishes to be determined by the designer or architect for the project.

Please refer to the project designer or architect for sealant selection, and to the sealant manufacturer for proper sealant recommendations and applications.

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