Installation, Cleaning and Maintenance, Product Education

#TileTuesday: Sneak Peek of Island Stone Lava Glass

#TileTuesday: Sneak Peek of Island Stone Lava Glass

We’re turning up the heat on Election Day’s #TileTuesday by introducing our new Lava Glass tile. Resident tile expert, David Fatula gives us:

  • A sneak peek of our new Lava Glass
  • Things to consider for glass pool tiles
  • How we test for glass tile durability

For such a common ornamentation, the complexities of how and where to install pool tile are vast. Customarily, questions arise on how tile installation and products differ on the waterline, underwater, and on the face of a spa/infinity pool. Many people think that tile on the bottom of the pool, or any area where the application is completely submerged, is the most vulnerable to degradation.

However, tiles installed on a waterline, or in an area that oscillates between dry and wet cycles, need the most consideration. Waterline tiles are subject to ambient temperature changes, outdoor elements, and weather factors, whereas submerged tiles are in a fairly static environment. David emphasizes that installers should be wary how certain tiles will fare under these conditions.

There is a misconception that glass tiles aren’t a feasible and long-lasting option for pools and spas. Glass tiles are typically harder to bond compared to porcelain and stone products and rely on a chemical bond that is more susceptible to water elements. “You can’t cut corners with glass tiles in pools,” says David. That means using a high quality thinset, making sure to let your thinset cure, and waterproofing.

<< David Fatula, Island Stone Director of Technical Services, gives a closer look of Lava Glass in Cool Tropics and Hazy Wave

That’s where Lava Glass comes in. Island Stone’s new, eye-catching tile not only gives swimmers the feel of a secluded lagoon but is easily bondable and appropriate for waterline, submerged, and spa face applications.

The Lava Glass collection comes in six colors and two sizes - 1” x 1” and 1” x 2”. Three colors of Lava Glass (Deep Flow, Solid Ash, Liquid Rock) are in a deeper hue with two levels of iridescence (high temp silver and low temp silver. While the other three are brighter hues (Hazy Wave, Cool Tropics, Burning Ice), with three levels of iridescence (high temp silver, low temp silver, high temp rainbow). 


While each variety is intriguing in its own respect, installers will be over the moon that we’re also offering a V-cap, pre-mounted in a row of 12 tiles, that is perfectly modulated for each color and shape and can be easily installed as a strip. In fact, we designed these tiles with the installers in mind. Lava Glass comes in a film-faced sheet of 12 x 12, and can easily be cut to resize. Film-faced sheets give installers a 100% bond, and thanks to our textured, fused back coating, the tiles provide a mechanical bond and improve the strength of the setting.

Just take a look at how our Lava Glass held up in industry standards for glass tiles:

  • >250 psi dry bond strength (minimum requirement: 150 psi)
  • >200 psi wet bond strength (minimum requirement: 100 psi)
  • >550 lbs. breaking strength (minimum requirement: 350 lbs.)
  • Passed the thermal shock test
  • Passed the freeze thaw test
  • Class A chemically resistant

Ask your Island Stone representative for samples and watch the full #TileTuesday video on the @island_stone IGTV channel. Mark your calendar every Tuesday at 10:30am PST for more #TileTuesday updates with David.