Short answer = yes. You’d be forgiven for assuming that a highly polished tile will never stain because it is so smooth, but that’s not quite the case. There are many benefits to polished tiles – their reflective properties make a space look bigger and brighter. They have undeniable aesthetic appeal. They can be buffed and polished to stay shiny, but they can absorb more dirt and liquid than you’d think.
When a tile is baked, the raw clay melds together in the kiln and vitrifies to make the tile non-porous. To get a high shine finish the tile needs to be mechanically polished. This process – usually done with a super heavy duty silicone carbide polishing machine – removes a layer of surface clay which opens up the pores of the tile. After the microstructure of the surface has been opened up, the tile is more susceptible to stains and scratches because the hard baked protective clay skin that formed in the kiln has been polished away.
How do you reduce staining?
Make sure your installer seals all polished tiles before and after installation. There are many impregnating sealers on the market that help protect against stains. We suggest pre-sealing the tiles before they are grouted so any residual “grout haze” won’t blemish tile during installation and clean up. When installation is finished, the tiles should be sealed again for extra stain resistance.
Lithofin KF Protective Impregnator for its oil and water repellent properties.
You can buy Lithofin products in the UK through Casdron: www.casdron.co.uk