Dye Sublimation vs. Kiln Fired Tiles

When selecting tiles for your home or business decoration, it’s important to note the different methods of making a tile and their benefits and weaknesses. The method used varies aspects such as how robust the tiles are, the price and their weather resistance.

Dye sublimation

This method has an image transfer process which can be good for indoor projects including kitchen backsplashes or shower surrounds for example. The main benefit of these tiles is that they are cheaper, but be careful as they do have a few downsides.

Firstly, the tiles must be kept out of direct sunlight, as the colour in them fades over time. They are also less weather resistant. The combination of these two factors is why they should only be used in applications inside your home or business, and only in areas away from windows. The Dye sublimation tiles are also less robust than their kiln-dried counterparts.

Overall dye-sublimation tiles are poorer in almost every way, except the price. Therefore, if you’re looking for a cheap design which will be kept out of sunlight, and harm’s way, dye-sublimation tiles are the choice for you.

Kiln Fired

These tiles are, as the name suggests, heated to extreme temperatures in a kiln. This melts the design into the tile, improving the resistance to sun damage. Ultimately kiln-fired tiles design will outlast any other type. They can brighten up your home or business for generations.

Kiln Fired porcelain tiles are the definite choice for outdoor use. Their durability, weather resistance and their immunity to UV light fading the colour contribute to them being the go-to tile for gardens, swimming pools and commercial signs.

Kiln fired tiles also require specialist ceramic printers for digital work and screen printers for pattern work. The specialist ceramic inks and toners used for these are more expensive than dye sublimation inks. All of our designs are applied by hand which is a bit more laborious than dye sublimation. The cost of purchasing, fitting and heating a kiln in addition to the extra labour that goes into making the tiles, means that kiln-fired tiles are usually more expensive than the dye sublimation tiles.

Tile Fire

Tile Fire design and produce custom pattern tiles and bespoke murals using the Kiln Fired method, so you can rest assured if you buy tiles for your home or business, they’ll last. If something does happen and a tile gets damaged, we can simply reprint and re-fire the tile. You can design your own tiles and we’ll make them for you, or you can describe your ideal mural or pattern and our designers will get to work rendering it.