Memphis Tile and Marble Company
Company Number 901-794-4636

Glossary of Terms

A substance that has the ability to hold materials together.

Adhesive ceramic
This type of adhesive is used primarily for bonding tile to another surface.

A material other than water, aggregates, and hydraulic cement, used as an ingredient of concrete or mortar, and added to the concrete immediately before or during its mixing.

A type of granular material (gravel, crushed stone, sand, etc.) used to form concrete, mortar or hydraulic-cement.

Adhering one material to another.

Bond Coat
A material, such as pure portlant cement or dry-set portland cement used to bond the back of tile to a prepared surface.

Bright Glaze
A high gloss colorless or colored ceramic glaze.

Broom Finish
The texture obtained after stroking a broom over fresh concrete.

A smooth rounded edge. This term is often used when referencing granite countertops.

A material used for sealing joints where normal movement may occur. This type of compound retains its flexibility for an extended period after application.

Ceramic Mosaic Tile
An unglazed tile, either porcelain or natural clay, formed by a dust-pressed or plastic method.

Ceramic Tile
A glazed or unglazed ceramic surfacing unit made from clay or a clay mixture and other ceramic material.

Chipping Hammer
A lightweight hammer used by a tilesetter to remove excess material from the back and/or edge of the wall and tiles.

Cleavage membrane
A layer of construction paper or polyethylene sheeting (15 lb. roofing felt or equivalent) used to isolate a wire reinforced tile mortar bed from a concrete substrate.

The process of reducing freshly placed mortar or concrete to the minimum practical space. This process is normally accomplished by using vibration, tamping, centrifugation or some combination of these to mold it within forms or molds and around embedded parts and reinforcement, and to eliminate voids other than entrained air.

Control Joint
A groove cut into concrete that allows cracking to occur in the joint without it being readily visible.

The process of maintaining humidity and temperature during a period of time after spreading concrete. Following this process assures the proper hardening of concrete.

Deck Mortar
A mortar consisting of sand and regular portland cement mixed to the proper consistency. This type of mortar is most commonly used for floors and decks.

A variation in the position or shape of a structural element due to the effects of load or volume change.

Dry Pack
Concrete or mortar mixes consolidated by dry packing.

The residue appearing on a material caused by the crystallization of soluble salts.

Epoxy Grout
A two-part grout system consisting of epoxy resin and epoxy hardener. This grout is formulated to have impervious qualities, stain, and chemical resistance and can be used to fill joints between tile.

Expansion Joint
A joint between two pieces of concrete or between concrete and some other material that allows space for movement of the pieces.

A method of using a straightedge to align mortar with float strips or screeds.

Glass Mosaic Tiles
Tiles made of glass often on a 12x12 sheet. These tiles are normally 2x2 in size and a quarter of an inch thick.

A ceramic coating appearing in a glassy state on an object.

Glazed Tile
A type of ceramic tile with a glaze applied and treated at a high temperature to essentially turn the glaze into a glass. The glazed surface may be clear, white, or colored.

A common and widely occurring type of intrusive, felsic, igneous rock. Granites usually have a medium to coarse texture. By definition, granite has a color index (the percentage of the rock made up of dark minerals) of less than 25%. Granite is usually found in the continental plates of the Earth's crust.

A cementitious or chemically setting mix used for filling tile or stone joints.

A popular tool used by tilesetters to hold mortar before the mortar is applied to a surface. This tool comes in several sizes from 10 inches to 14 inches square.

Joint Filler
This compressible material is used to fill joints which helps to prevent the infiltration of debris and provides support for sealants.

Joint Sealant
This compressible material is used to deter water and solid foreign materials from entering joints.

An experienced reliable worker who has learned his trade and works as an apprentice.

A water emulsion of a synthetic rubber or plastic obtained by polymerization and used in paints, coatings and adhesives.

A wood strip or metal mesh used to reinforce the scratch or mortar coat.

Marble Mosaics
Tile made of small marble pieces that vary slightly in size. The mosaics are typically mounted on sheets to make installation easier.

Marble Tiles
Marble cut into twelve inch or less squares.

A chemical mixture of organic and inorganic ingredients prepared and used directly from the manufacturer.

Mexican Tile
Handmade tile that varys in color, texture and appearance that appears to be like Terra cotta. This tile is available in many shapes and sizes up to 12 inches and is usually used for floors.

A workable mixture of cement paste and aggregate used to bind blocks together and fill the gaps. The workable mixture hardens as it dries.

Generally glass, cermaic or marble mosaic tile used to provide a decorative design or picture.

Unglazed porcelain or natural clay tile similar to ceramic mosaics in composition and physical properties.

Porcelain tile
A ceramic mosaic tile or paver generally made by the dust-pressed method.

Portland Cement
A hydraulic cement made by heating a limestone and clay mixture in a kiln and pulverizing the resulting material. This type of cement hardens when placed in water.

Quarry tile
Unglazed tile made by the extrusion process from natural clay or shales.

Shower pan
Known as a waterproof membrane in some areas.

Shower receptor
The floor and side walls of the shower tip to and including the curb of the shower.

Semi-inorganic polymers that offer thermal stability, high lubricity, and water repellence. Silicone is used in many products, including but not limited to adhesives, lubricants, protective coatings, and synthetic rubber.

A term used to describe the bonding of tile with suitable materials applied approximately one-eighth inch thick. Thin-set mortar is often used to adhere tile to a surface.

A section of wood or stone placed beneath a door to transition between two areas.

A surfacing unit with either a glazed or unglazed surface made from clay or a mixture of clay and other ceramic materials. (examples: ceramic tile, porcelain tile)

Vapor Barrier
A layer of material used on the surface of a concrete wall or floor to prevent moisture absorption and condensation.

Waterproof Membrane
A layer of material used to protect an area from water.