Metal ceilings are a popular upgrade many American homeowners are already enjoying. An excellent choice in hot, humid regions, metal ceilings act as insulation, aiding in temperature regulation. Metal ceilings are also known to improve the acoustics of a space.
Whether you are considering installing a metal ceiling to add modern or vintage appeal to your space, there are many finishes, designs, and sizes to choose from. But should you use finished or unfinished tiles to create your new ceiling? The advantages of each are discussed below to help you make an informed decision.
Finished Tin Ceiling Tiles
Finished tiles are glazed with a mixture of pigment, pulverized metal, and polyester resin. The finishing increases the tiles’ durability, making them less susceptible to cracks, chips, and weather damage. Finished tiles usually contain a high gloss that reflects any light beautifully, making them appealing to many homeowners.
Commonly used in dining rooms, banquet halls, and reception areas, finished tiles brighten rooms with high ceilings and ample light. The distinct “Old World” design of finished tiles most often speaks to those seeking to enhance a room with a vintage motif.
Unfinished Metal Ceiling Tiles
As the name implies, unfinished tiles are not glazed. To ensure your unfinished tiles retain their beauty, you will need to treat them before installing your new ceiling. Treating unfinished tiles can be a long process and may require professional help. If you want to treat the tiles yourself, use an oil-based polyurethane primer with a rust inhibitor made especially for metal.
Unfinished tiles offer a more natural look to your space. Highlighting the craftsman’s artistic design rather than bringing light to the space, unfinished tiles are popular with environmentally-conscious homeowners. On the other hand, the high reflectivity of the glossy surface of finished tiles lets in more light, which heats up the room below, making it more costly to cool.
With unfinished tiles, your family and guests can appreciate every inch of your well-chosen design. Look for sunbursts, leaf designs, or smaller configurations that evoke dots or stars. If you use colored tiles, the unfinished surface will highlight the various nuances of each color. Since they are available in so many colors (red, blue, olive green, ivory, and more), unfinished tiles are often used to provide a warm, earthy atmosphere. As such, they are commonly used to create kitchen backsplashes. The unfinished tile is also a popular component of many restaurant ceilings, backsplashes, tabletops, and other displays.