When you’re buying ceramic or porcelain tiles, one of the choices you’ll have (particularly with bigger tiles) is whether or not to get ‘rectified’ tiles. This decision will mostly depend on the type of look you’re after.
What are ‘rectified’ tiles?
Rectified tiles are ceramic or porcelain tiles that have been precisely ground and machined to give them near-perfect straight edges and exact dimensions. These tiles provide a very clean, symmetrical look, and allow for extremely fine grout lines of 3mm or less
Rectified tiles usually also have a very fine bevel around their top edge too, to help reduce the chance of their sharp edges chipping.
These tiles are also known as ‘dimensionally stable tiles’ (which is a bigger mouthful and no more descriptive) – and are often referred to as ‘sharp edge’ tiles because they’re quite sharp at the edge.
Are rectified tiles all exactly the same?
Rectified tiles are practically identical in terms of length and width – the machines used to cut them work to very fine tolerances, and for most people’s purposes there won’t be a noticeable difference from one tile to the next.
What’s the appeal of rectified tiles?
Because they’re very even and uniform, when you’re using rectified tiles only the thinnest of grout lines is necessary (3mm or less). The appeal of a sleek, thin grout line’s the main reason people choose these tiles. A 1.5mm grout line in particular can give an almost seamless look with the right coloured grout and tiles, and it’s a fantastic effect when it’s well done.
Are rectified tiles expensive?
It’s always relative to the quality, type and size of tile that you’re after, but rectified tiles usually cost more than non-rectified tiles of a similar standard, because there’s a bit more work that goes into producing them. Likewise, depending on the size of the grout line you’re after and where you’re laying them, you may also need to have them laid on a special bedding or substrate to ensure that they’re suitably flush.