Absorption - The relationship of the weight of the water absorbed by a tile, to the weight of the dry tile, expressed in percent.

Accelerators - Materials used to speed up the setting of mortar.

Adhesive, ceramic - Used for bonding tile to a surface. Rubber solvents, and rubber and resin-based emulsions can be used as adhesives.

Backing - Material used as a base over which a finished tile is to be installed.

Balanced cuts - Cuts of tile at the perimeter of an area which will not take full tiles. Also the same sized cuts on each side of a miter.

Base - One or more rows of tile installed above the floor (See Cove).

Beating block - A wooden block used to embed tiles in a flat plane. Method is called "beating in".

Bicottura - Method for producing tile by firing twice (first fire for body, second fire to fuse glazes onto body). Can be produced using three different clays - red or cottoforte, yellow or majolica and white clay. Usually have two glazes on the tile, the first a non-transparent on the body and a transparent glaze on the surface.

Body - Term refers to structural portion of a ceramic product and to the material or mixture from which it is made.

Bone China - A translucent china made from a ceramic whiteware body composition containing a minimum of 25% bone ash.

Bullnose - A trim tile with a convex radius on one side. Used for finishing top of wainscoat or turning of an outside corner.

Buttering - The spreading of a bond coat to the back of the ceramic tile immediately before tile is placed.

Cap - See Bullnose.

Cement body tile - Tiles with a structure made from a mixture of sand and Portland cement. The surface can be finished with Portland cement, spheroids, marble or other materials.

Ceramic Whiteware - A fired ware consisting of a glazed or unglazed ceramic body which is commonly white and of fine texture. This term designates such products as china, porcelain, semivitreous ware and earthware.

Conductive tile - Made from a special body composition or by methods resulting in specific properties of electrical conductivity while retaining other normal physical properties of tile.

Conventional installation - Method of installing ceramic tile with Portland cement mortar.

Cove - A trim tile with one edge a concave radius. Used to form a junction between the bottom wall course and the floor or to form an inside corner.

Crazing - The cracking which occurs in fired glazed or other critical tensile stresses.

Decorative tile - Tile with a ceramic decoration on the surface.

Edgebonded tile - See Pregrouted Tile.

Embossed - A decoration in relief or excised on the wear surface.

Epoxy adhesive - A two-part adhesive system employing epoxy resin and epoxy hardener. Used for bonding ceramic tile to back-up material.

Epoxy grout - A two-part grout system consisting of epoxy resin and epoxy hardener. Formulated to have impervious qualities - stain and chemical resistance. Used to fill joints between tiles.

Facial defect - That portion of the tile facial surface which is readily observed to be nonconforming and which detracts from the aesthetic appearance or serviceability of the installed tile.

Faience tile - Features characteristic variations in the face, edges, and glaze which gives a handcrafted, non-mechanical decorative effect. Generally made by the plastic process with glazed or unglazed tile.

Feature strip - A narrow strip of tile with contrasting color, texture, or design.

Field tile - An area of tile covering a wall or floor. Most often bordered by tile trim.

Fire, bisque - The process of kiln-firing ceramic ware prior to glazing.

Fire, decorating - The process of firing ceramic or metallic decorations on the surface of glazed ceramic tile.

Fire, single - The process of maturing an unfired ceramic body and its glaze in one firing operation.

Firing - A step during the manufacture of ceramic tile using a kiln or furnace to develop desired properties through controlled heat treatment.

Floating - A method of aligning mortar with the float strips or screeds using a straightedge. Also called dragging, pulling, or rodding.

Frost proof tile - Product manufactured for use where freezing and thawing conditions occur.

Glass mosaic tiles - Made of glass usually in sizes not over 2" square and 1/4" thick mounted on sheets of paper. Sheets are usually 12" x 12".

Glaze - A coating matured to the glassy state on a formed ceramic product. Also refers to the material or mixture from which the coating is made. Bright Glaze - A high-glass coating with or without color. Clear Glaze Transparent with or without color. Crystalline Glaze - Contains microscopic crystals. Frittat Glaze - Uses all or part of prefused fluxing constituents. Matte Glaze - A low-gloss glaze with or without color. Opaque Glaze - Nontransparent coating with or without color. Raw Glaze - Compounded primarily of raw constituents and contains no prefused materials. Semimatte Glaze - A medium-gloss finish with or without color. Speckled Glaze - Features granules of oxides or ceramic stains of contrasting colors.

Glazed tile - A fused, impervious facial finish composed of ceramic materials fused to the body of the tile which may be non-vitreous, semi-vitreous, vitreous or impervious.

Grout - A cement of chemically setting mortar filling tile joints.

Heavy duty tile - Tile suitable for areas where heavy pedestrian traffic is prevalent. Can be specified to meet higher test values as determined by job requirements.

Impervious tile - Has water absorption of 0.5% or less.

Latex-portland cement grout - Combines portland cement grout with a special latex additive to make a less rigid, less permeable grout than regular portland cement group.

Latex-portland cement mortar - Mixture of portland cement, sand, and special latex additives. Used for bonding tile to back-up material. It is less rigid than portland cement mortar.

Marble tile - Marble cut into tiles 12" x 12" or less - usually 1/2" to 1/4" thick. Available in various finishes, including polished, honed and split faced.

Mexican paver tile - Used mainly on floors. The hand-made tiles vary in color, texture and appearance. The terracotta-like tile in hexagon, octagon, elongated hexagon, fleur de lis squares up to 12" - and other shapes. Coated with various types of sealers to provide a wearing surface.

Monocottura - Method of producing tile by a single firing in which body and glazes are fired simultaneously in kilns at temperatures over 2000 degrees.

Mosaic tile - Formed by either the dust pressed or plastic method. Usually 1/4" to 3/8" thick with a facia area of less than six square inches. Made of porcelain or natural clay composition, with or without an abrasive mixture throughout.

Mounted tile - Tile assembled into units or sheets, either back mounted or face mounted, and bonded by suitable material to facilitate handling. Back mounted has perforated paper, fiber mesh resin or other suitable material permanently attached to the back and/or edges so that a portion of the back of each tile is exposed to the bond coat. Face mounted has paper applied to the face of the tile, usually by water soluble adhesive so it is easily removed prior to grouting of the joints.

Natural clay tile - A ceramic mosaic or paver tile made by dust-pressed or plastic method. Made from clays that produce a dense body with a distinctive, slightly textured appearance.

Nominal sizes - Approximate facial size or thickness of tile for general reference expressed in centimeters or inches.

Non-slip tile - Tile with greater non-slip characteristics due to abrasive admixture, abrasive particles, grooves or patterns in the surface or because of natural non-skid surface characteristics.

Nonvitreous tile - Has water absorption of more than 7%.

Paver tile - Unglazed porcelain or natural clay tile formed by the dust-pressed method. Similar to ceramic mosaic tile in composition arc physical properties but relatively thicker with six square inches or more of facial area. PINHOLES -Imperfections in the surface of a ceramic body or glaze.

Porcelain tile - A ceramic mosaic or paver tile generally made by the dust-pressed method of a composition that produces a dense impervious line gained tile with smooth and sharply formed face.

Pre-grouted tile - A surfacing unit consisting of an assembly of ceramic tile bonded together at the edges by a material (generally elasiomeric) which completely seals the joints. The material (grout) may fill the joint completely or partially and may cover all, part, or none of the back surfaces of the tiles. The perimeter of these factory pre-grouted sheets may include all, part or none of the joint between the sheets. The term edge-bonded tile is sometimes used to designate a type of pre-grouted tile sheet having the front and back surfaces completely exposed.

Quarry tile - Unglazed tile that is usually six square inches or more in surface area and 1/2 to 3/4" thick. Made by the extrusion process from natural clay or shale.

Reducer - A trim unit used to shorten the radius of a bullnose or a cove to another radius or to a square. SAMPLING - Method of obtaining tile for testing from an agreed upon lot.

Sculptured tile - Tile with a decorative design of high and low areas molded into the finished face.

Self-spacing tile - Tile with lugs spacers or protuberances on the sides which automatically space the tile for grout joints.

Semivitreous tile - Has water absorption of more than 3% but not more than 7%.

Slip-resistant tile - Tile having greater skid-resistance characteristics due to an abrasive mixture, abrasive particles in the surface, or grooves or patterns in the surface.

Spacers - Cross, tee-shaped and y-shaped. They are used in installation to separate tile on walls and floors. Manufactured in various thicknesses from 1/16 to 1/2".

Special purpose tile - Glazed or unglazed tile made to meet or to have special physical design or appearance characteristics such as size, thickness, shape, color or decoration; keys or lugs on the backs or sides; pre-grouted assemblies on sheets; special resistance to staining, frost, alkalis, acids, thermal shock, physical impact, or high coefficient of friction.

Straight joint - The style of tile installation which features all joints in alignment.

Structural defects - Cracks or laminations in the tile body which detract from the aesthetic appearances and/or structural soundness of the installation.

Substrate - The under-layment for the ceramic tile installation.

Thin-set - The bonding of tile with suitable materials applied approximately 1/8" thick.

Tile - A ceramic surfacing unit, usually relatively thin in relation to facial area, made from clay or a mixture of clay and other ceramic material. Has glazed or unglazed face and is fired above red heat in the course of manufacture to a temperature sufficiently high to produce specific physical properties and characteristics.

Trim units - Various shades of bases, caps, corners, mouldings, angles, etc. necessary to achieve an installation of the desired sanitary and/or architectural design.

Unglazed tile - A hard, dense tile of uniform composition throughout, deriving color and texture from the materials from which the body is made.

Vertical broken joint - Ceramic tile installation featuring each vertical row offset for half its length.

Vitreous tile - Has water absorption of more than 0.5%, but not more than 3%.

Wall tile - Glazed tile with a body suitable for interior use. Usually non-vitreous, it is neither required nor expected to withstand excessive impact or be subject to freezing or thawing conditions.