How to drill ceramic tiles

Ceramic tile is a very durable, but fragile finishing material. Therefore, drilling a ceramic tile with a drill is a very difficult and responsible matter. During this process, you can damage the tile surface and ruin the drill bit.

Drilling a hole in a tile with an electric drill

To drill a hole in the tile, the drill must have a rotation speed adjustment to enable low revs.

Tile properties

Ceramic tiles are made of baked clay, coated on top with a special glaze, which contains silicon. With the further firing procedure, the silicon compound turns into a hard shiny coating similar to glass. Clay also becomes much harder and in its structure is similar to slate stone. The main difficulty in drilling ceramic tiles, is the processing of the upper part of the silicon coating. After the drill goes through a harder layer, it goes on much easier. But it is impossible to prevent the split clay composition.

Insert drill into power drill

To prevent the drill from sliding on the glossy tiles, the place of the intended hole can be taped and marked with a cross.

Recently, porcelain tile has appeared on the building materials market. It contains more silicon, which increases the coefficient of hardness of the tile. Drilling such a finishing material is even more difficult than clay-based tile.

The key to successful drilling of tiles is the use of a good (better than new) carbide drill:

  • carbide-based drill bit;
  • diamond coated drill bit.

Moreover, it is necessary to use a drill, which has the ability to adjust the speed of rotation. The combination of these factors will allow you to perform high-quality drilling tiles.

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The process of drilling tiles

The process of drilling holes in the tile electric drill

The force of pressing on the electric drill should be minimal with the lowest speed, so as not to break the tile.

After the choice of how to drill is made, it is necessary to proceed directly to the drilling process itself. To do this, you need to adjust the required number of revolutions of the drill chuck. This value should be in the range of 120-200 rpm. This speed of rotation is optimal for high-quality processing of finishing material.

It is important to remember that the impact function of the drill is strictly prohibited for use. This may cause cracking or splitting of the surface of the material. This drill function should only be used when processing concrete or brick products.

During the process of processing it is impossible to make a strong pressure on the drill and the handle of the drill. This may cause the drill to rebound during operation. Then the ceramic tiles will be damaged. To prevent possible chipping of the glaze, you can glue a small piece of masking tape to the drilling site.

Diamond bit for drilling

Diamond crown allows you to drill a hole in the tile up to 150 mm. in diameter.

Next, it is necessary to note the center of the hole being prepared and proceed with the processing procedure. Using masking tape helps a lot to control the drill, which can easily slide off the smooth surface of the glaze.

During the execution of the work, it is not allowed to increase the number of revolutions, otherwise the drill may become hot, blush and smoke. After that such drill will be unsuitable for further use. This is due to the fact that due to the high speed of rotation increases the friction force, which leads to excessive heating. At low speed, the drill will not have time to heat up much, respectively, the quality of processing will be high.

Pobedit drill bit

Pobeditovy tip allows you to gently drill a hole without damaging the tile, for this the drill must work at low revs.

You can use another way to prevent the tool from overheating: use engine oil. This oil is required to be poured into a small bath and every 20-30 seconds to dip the heated drill bit there. After cooling the tool you need to wipe it with a rag. This is necessary in order to prevent the ingress of oil on the surface of the glaze. Otherwise, oil stains will appear on it that are very difficult to remove.

When processing porcelain stoneware, it is necessary to use diamond-coated drills. Such drills are all the more impossible to overheat, because the layer of their deposition is very thin and can quickly burn out.

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Making holes with a large diameter

In the case when there is a need to prepare a hole with a larger diameter, it is necessary to use a hole saw. The ring saw (mill) is a specialized nozzle which has a sharp cutting edge with a diamond dusting.

A guide drill is built into the design of such a saw. It is used to prepare a hole with a small diameter.

This hole will help prevent the cutter from moving during the work, which will allow to prepare the necessary cutout in the tile.

In order to accurately and accurately perform such work, it is necessary to glue the entire surface of the glaze with masking tape. Then with the help of a standard drawing compass it is necessary to mark the hole of the desired diameter. After that, you can begin carefully and slowly to perform work. During their execution, it is necessary to observe not only the speed of rotation, but also the location of the cutter itself. Do not allow its deviations from the vertical, otherwise it will lead to the formation of the wrong hole.

If you correctly perform the work on drilling, then the difficulties in how to properly handle the surface of ceramic tiles, should not arise.

This will allow you to get an even hole and help prevent the destruction of the upper layer, which also has an aesthetic function.

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