Heath Tile FAQs
Heath Tile is not your average tile — take advantage of its unique handcrafted characteristics in your installation.
Our tile has been handcrafted (aka perfectly imperfect) for over fifty years. Edith Heath liked it that way, we like it that way, and we certainly hope that you like it that way. That said, we should probably make a couple things clear: First, our tile is handled, cared-for and finished by real people — we think that’s pretty cool. Second, no two tiles are alike (think fingerprints and snowflakes).
Do you have stock in all colors & shapes?
We have two ways to shop Heath Tile: Made-to-Order and In-Stock.
Made-to-order means just that — you order, we make. Choose a color, choose a size, a shape, a pre-designed pattern and we’ll put your order through production. Our Made-to-Order collections are Classic Field, Tapestry, Dimensional, Dwell Patterns, Mural, and select Dual Glaze glazes and sizes. Check current lead time status for each collection here.
Our In-Stock tile is generally available for same-day purchase, pickup, or shipping from one of our Heath Tile Showrooms. There’s absolutely no difference between the quality of our In-Stock and Made-to-Order collections. By limiting the offerings and producing large quantities, rather than small batches, we are able to offer a very competitive price on these tile lines. Our In-Stock collections are Modern Basics and select Dual Glaze glazes and sizes.
Occasionally, because people love our tile, some of our In-Stock tile inventory may be temporarily sold out. We encourage you to call your preferred tile showroom, in Sausalito, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, to check the current availability of our In-Stock collections.
Do you offer a porcelain tile line?
Heath tile is considered a stoneware tile, which differs from porcelain in the coarseness of the clay and the lowered firing temperature. However, our clay bodies are very unique for stoneware, as they are virtually non-porous and very durable. This means that they can, in many cases, take the place of porcelain.
I really like a particular gloss glaze — can I order that in a matte finish?
No, glaze formulas are unique to their color and finish and cannot be modified independently. However, there are some similar colors in both finishes. If this isn’t the case with the color you’re interested in, we may be able to custom develop something for you — contact our Tile Manager Eric Gaietto to discuss a custom tile job.
Why is it suggested that I purchase 10% more than required for my installation?
This is a general rule of thumb when ordering tile. Usually when a tile is cut, the remaining piece can’t be used anywhere else, resulting in fewer tiles than expected. Job Completions (placing a small order to make up for the tile shortage) are costly and time consuming, and can often be avoided by ordering the recommended 10% overage.
As a general rule, tile is one of the last materials installed on a project. If additional tile is needed at this stage, there are often delays in the completion of the overall project while a Job Completion is produced. As well, due to the inherent batch variation with Heath tile, a second run could end up looking significantly different from the original order.
Why is it so expensive to order less than 25 square feet of tile?
Believe it or not, it is very time consuming to produce small quantities of tile. The setup time to make one, twenty-five, or 500 square feet takes the same amount of time — changing tools, cleaning glaze guns, setting application parameters, etc. So, the production cost per square foot is considerably higher for the low quantities.
Do I need to seal my tile?
Textured matte and crackle glazes will benefit from a pre-grout seal to aid in grout haze removal and prevent staining from saturated grout colors. Installed tile should be sealed again after grouting to protect the grout and glaze, and potentially re-sealed annually if in a wet location or food prep area. This is particularly important for crackle glazes as the crackle will continue to develop.
How can I clean my tile?
You should be able to use any cleaning product specified for tile, though we suggest first testing the product in an inconspicuous area to be sure. Bar Keepers Friend is a product we use often and highly recommend. It can be found in our store or most large hardware stores. Be aware that if your tile has a non-acid-resistant glaze you should avoid cleansers that contain acids (such as vinegar and lemon juice). Also, avoid highly abrasive cleansers on higher gloss tiles as they may become scratched. Some tiles should be towel dried after cleaning to avoid watermarks caused by hard water.
Installing Heath tile
Visit our page on Installation Tips for detailed information on your install.
Interested? The Next Step
Send us a note to let us know how we can help with your project.