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Ceiling Tiles – Types, Materials, Styles

Ceiling tiles are lightweight panels used to cover ceilings.

They are ideal for any room in residential/commercial spaces. Ceiling tiles are available in various types, colors, styles, materials, Installation methods, and unique designs and patterns.

Custom ceiling patterns can also be created in ceiling tiles. They enhance the aesthetics of the room and provide some thermal insulation.

They can be painted to match the color scheme of interiors.

Hand-Painted Ceiling Tiles

Most of the hand-painted ceiling tiles are in traditional patterns and styles such as Roman, Victorian designs. They have an antique look with bronze and golden finishes with beautiful leaves and floral patterns that are attractive and eye-catching, creating an elegant feel in the room.

handpainted ceiling tiles

Also with contemporary designs and patterns to give a modern look.

Ideal for renovation projects to conceal imperfections in ceilings.

Powder-Coated Ceiling Tiles

Ceiling tiles are sprayed with a spray gun using electrostatically-charged resin powder uniformly. Then they are cured in an oven to provide a smooth finish.

These are less time consuming than hand-painted ceiling tiles.


Luminous Ceilings

Luminous ceilings come with a light-emitting surface. They provide a uniform level of illuminance throughout the room below.



There are various sizes in ceiling tiles. The most used sizes are 24″x24″,24″x48″,20″x20″.

False Ceiling Systems

Suspended ceilings are created using metal grid systems which are suspended below ceiling using a series of wires. The ceiling tiles are laid in between these metal grids.

Depending on the appearance, the metal grid can be exposed, recessed, or concealed.

Exposed grid – The metal grid is visible into which panels/tiles are laid.

Recessed grid-partially conceals the grid system

Concealed Grid-Tiles hide the metal grid system


Tiles are made of different materials.

Metal – Aluminium




Metals are attractive and can be blend into different designs and patterns. They are sturdy and long-lasting and prevent moisture damage to a great extent.

Metals are termite resistant when compared to wood and are also fire-resistant.

The disadvantage of metal is that there is a chance of dealing with rust in the future. It is difficult to install compared to other tiles.


PVC(Polyvinylchloride)is an extremely lightweight and durable material used for ceiling tiles. They are easy to maintain.


These tiles are waterproof and are resistant to termites when compared with wood.

However, as a plastic product, they are not eco-friendly.

Types -Faux tin tiles (replicating the appeal and look of real tin (metal))

Faux Tin tiles are used as an alternative over real tin as they are cheaper, easy to alter the sizes of tiles than real tin and faux tin does not echo.


Styrofoam tiles are manufactured from extruded polystyrene.


There are two options in this-either to leave plain or laminate the tile. Laminating protect tiles from moisture and humidity.

Provides sound and heat insulation when compared to metal.

These tiles cannot be used as drop ceiling tiles and are directly glued up to the ceilings. Ideal for hiding imperfections in ceilings.


Different substances: ethyl carbamate, carbamate, polyurethane.


These tiles are expensive and durable, can be used inside and outside.

Resistance to weather, rust, mold, etc.,

Mineral fiber, fiberglass, mineral Wool-Acoustic tiles-sound insulators, play a part in reducing noise levels of the room.

Few other materials are Gypsum, fiberboard, fabric, vinyl, plastic, etc.

Compatible Surfaces

Few surfaces which are compatible with ceiling tiles are:

  • Concrete Surfaces
  • Plaster
  • Wood and Plywood
  • Suspended Ceilings
  • Drywall

Mounting Type


Dropped into a ceiling grid. Space is created above tiles which are hung from the main structural ceiling.


  • Electrical and mechanical equipment is hidden improving the aesthetics of the room.
  • Provides heat and sound insulation.

Surface Mount/Glue-up

Directly mounted to a ceiling using adhesive/glue. The adhesive depends on the type of tile used and compatible surface. Few tiles come with adhesive ready on them.


  • Easy to install as an installation grid and frame is not required.
  • Hides imperfections in ceilings/covering damaged plaster or popcorn ceilings.

Nail up

Tiles are required to be nailed in place.


Ceiling tiles are available to complement different interior design styles. Some of them are

  • Art Deco
  • Contemporary
  • Modern
  • Mediterranean
  • Roman
  • Traditional
  • Country Style
  • Tropical
  • Victorian
  • Vintage etc.

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