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metal ceiling tiles

Metal ceiling tiles are a great way to add an architectural element that is both contemporary and classic. They can be used in a wide variety of applications in homes, restaurants and bars. They are also popular in home improvement stores, where they are often sold as decorative accents or as part of a kit for refinishing existing tin ceilings. They are also available in a wide array of colors, styles and patterns, from ornate Victorian looks to modern industrial designs.

In addition to the metal tiles, you can find matching cornices, border or edging tiles and moldings that provide additional visual interest to the room. They can be installed using the same installation methods as a standard drop ceiling or nailed directly to the ceiling substrate. The patterned tiles are usually installed on a plywood furring strip or a plywood ceiling substrate, because nails do not hold strongly to plaster and drywall.

Before installing the first tile, map out your ceiling on graph paper to locate and draw any light fixtures, heating vents, closet doors or other features that will interfere with starting points or panel placement. These elements may also affect the size of the border panels you’ll need to use on either side of your finished ceiling design.

Once you’ve located these features, snap a line with a piece of string coated with chalk from the center point to the far wall, or from the nearest light fixture to the center. Then make another line perpendicular to the first one, which will serve as a guide for your first row of tiles. It’s a good idea to have two people work on this step so you can keep the chalk lines straight and ensure that all of the tiles will fit together tightly without gaps.

When the first tiles are in place, loosen the cover on the light fixture and cut a hole for it as you’d like to see it in the finished room. Once the holes are cut, loosen the cover on the fixture again and measure the diameter of the circle you’ve made in order to determine how big a hole to cut in the new metal ceiling tiles. This will prevent the ceiling from collapsing and damaging the lighting fixture.

After the last tiles are in place, install your border or edging tiles and moldings to complete the look. Then paint the walls to hide any exposed edges of the tiles and to give the room a more finished appearance. Many metal ceiling manufacturers offer paint that is formulated to protect the tiles against rust and other environmental deterioration.

Armstrong makes 12 profiles of metal ceiling tiles under the Metallaire brand that come in traditional styles such as paneled or coffered looks and authentic tin ceiling designs. They are 24″ x 24″ and can be laid into a drop ceiling or nailed to the ceiling substrate. These metal ceiling tiles are also available in a variety of finishes including white, chrome, copper and brass looks and can be sealed to help protect against rust. They are available at Lowes and local home improvement retailers.