Clay Top Repair


About Clay

Clay is a material that consists of fine-grained, phyllosilicate minerals from the earth. The clay is pressed into molds, allowed to air dry then fired in kilns. After the tile are fired, a glaze is hand applied and the tiles are re-fired at temperatures exceeding 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. The top of the glazed tile is relatively non-porous and clay tile is a very durable material. If properly maintained, it will last forever.

Your clay tabletop has been sealed using a special treatment to resist moisture penetration and staining. The sealer has a very long life, but does require proper cleaning and maintenance to maintain the integrity of the tabletop. It's important to remember the following to maintain a beautiful outdoor dining surface for years to come:

  • Acidic compounds found in many foods such as tomato products, mustard, fruit juices, wines, colas, vinegar and coffee can leave permanent stains in clay materials.
  • The nature of clay also leaves it susceptible to heat retention. Care should be exercised when handling clay that has been subjected to lengthy exposure to the sun.
In the event that your table top is exposed to staining or scratching, below we've prepared a link to detailed instructions on how to renew and refinish the look of your clay top using a special line of products. Sealing the tabletop will help prevent or reduced the damage caused by acidic compounds.

Care and Maintenance

Clay requires care.

Sealing - the most important thing you can do for your tabletop
The most important thing you can do to ensure the lasting beauty of your tabletop is seal it, when necessary, with the factory recommended sealer. The sealer acts as a repellent, preventing the absorption of moisture and stainable materials. Agio recommended clay sealers are available by following one of these links:

Use this link to order the SBS Sealer in the USA.
Use this link to order the SBS Sealer in CANADA.
Use this link to view a video of the sealer application procedure.

Cleaning - handle with care
The clay top on your table has been sealed. Maintaining the sealer on the table is very important and requires regular cleaning. Clean tops with a soft, clean cloth (one that won't bleed color) or sponge. Use warm clean water and mild dish soap. Remember, you are not cleaning the clay; you are cleaning the sealer layer on the clay. Do not use petroleum-based or abrasive cleaners. Rinse with plenty of clean water to remove any soap residue. Dry thoroughly after cleaning to prevent water spots.

Even if your tabletop has been sealed, spills need to be cleaned immediately to prevent staining or damaged to the tabletop. Always blot spills with a clean, soft cloth. Wiping could spread the spill. Repeat blotting with dry area of cloth until spill is totally absorbed. Rinse with clean, warm water and wipe dry.

Cleaning your top on a consistent and regular basis will help aid in a longer lasting top.

Additional Recommendations

Making the beauty last!
Use coasters and placemats when dining. Coasters will help absorb sweating by beverage glasses or cups and also prevent hot mugs or cups from leaving a ring. Placemats will catch spills and prevent dishes from scratching the table. When placing hot food dishes on the tabletop, always use trivets, mats or hot pads.

Cover your dining set with an outdoor furniture cover when not in use to protect it from the elements. Furniture covers can be purchased at most patio shops and home improvement centers.

We recommend that your table be stored indoors during the winter months.
It will protect it from cracking in extreme cold.

If it must be stored outside, it should ALWAYS be covered.

Repair Information
If, for any reason, the clay top portion of the table becomes damaged, it can be repaired using materials available everyday at your local hardware store or home center.

Materials needed for repair project:
* 2-part epoxy
* Pre-mixed tile grout (match color to your table)
* S-B-S Sealer by Aldon Chemical

Tools needed to complete the process:
* Putty knife
* Sponge
* Bucket
* Wire Brush

1. Save any and all loose pieces of clay that have broken off the table.
2. Use the putty knife to pry off any pieces around the break that may be loose and then use the wire brush to clean the surface of the underlying layer (substrate) at the point of the break.
3. Dry fit the pieces back into the site of the break in order to determine where in the break they belong. On a separate surface, place them in the order in which they belong.
4. Mix the 2-part epoxy.
5. Apply a thin coating of epoxy to the underlying layer in a "buttering" fashion.
6. Take the pieces, one at a time, "butter" the back of each piece and stick it onto the site of the break where it fit previously. Clean the epoxy from your hands and tools immediately. Let the epoxy set as described in the manufacturer's instructions.
7. Only after the epoxy has cured, use the putty knife or the sponge to apply a liberal coating of the pre-mixed grout over the top of the break site.
8. Work the grout into the gaps between the broken pieces of the clay. Rinse your sponge in a bucket of water thoroughly and often.
9. The drying grout will leave a film on the surrounding tile that should be removed with a clean damp sponge.
10. After allowing the grout to dry in the prescribed time as recommended by its manufacturer, apply a second application of grout to fill any voids left by the sponging process. Repeat steps 7 – 9 as necessary. It may take several coatings to get the grout level with the clay around it.
12. After you are satisfied with the results, seal your top following the sealer manufacturer's directions.