Great Lakes Tin Frequently Asked Questions

How should I prepare the ceiling before I install the nail-up tiles?

The surface area should be clean, dry, flat and structurally sound. If proper preparation steps are not taken, you take the risk of a poor final product.

What can I use to cut the ceiling tiles?

Use tin snips to cut the ceiling tiles.

What accessories are available to finish my real tin ceiling project?

Real tin tiles have two types of crown molding that can be used to achieve that finished look, and you can also use wood crown molding for trim.

The tiles move when there’s a draft or when closing doors. What can I use to hold down the ceiling tiles?

We offer optional clips that may be used for drafty areas or uneven grid systems.

Do you have matching grid for the lay-in tin ceiling tiles?

We have colors that are similar, but not the exact color of the tin tiles. A home center can mix matching paint for a grid system if desired.

Can the ceiling panels be cleaned?

Yes, standard mild soap and water should be used to clean the tiles.

Can I get samples of Great Lakes Tin ceiling tiles?

No, We’re sorry, samples are not available for Great Lakes Tin ceiling panels.

What tools will I need to install Great Lakes Tin ceiling tiles?

To install your ceiling tiles, you will need the following:

  • Tape measure
  • Tin snips
  • Steel straight edge
  • Chalk line
  • Hammer
  • Dome heak nails or #4 pan head screws
  • Leather work gloves

Do I need to install regular acoustic panels behind the lay-in panels?

No, that is not necessary. If sag or lift is an issue, we recommend that the panels are installed underneath a mineral board ceiling tile or some other material. You can use old mineral board tiles or purchase an economical mineral board tile for this purpose. THIS IS NOT A REQUIREMENT.

Can I paint the panels?

Yes the matte white and unfinished panels are recommended if you plan on painting your tiles. Use an oil-based primer and paint. Steel will rust if a water-based product is used.

What is the heat index for these tiles?

Painted tiles are fire retardant up to 300 degrees.

Which tin tiles need a border tile?

The Syracuse, Saginaw, Niagara, Toledo, Rochester, and Toronto designs typically use a border tile, but the use of border tiles is based on personal preference.

What grid system can be used for lay-in tiles?

Any standard grid system can be used and grids can be painted to match the tiles. Some GridMAX is similar in color, but none is an exact match.

How should the nail-up tiles be installed?

Plywood or furring strip installation is recommended prior to nailing up tiles. Space the nails every 6-12 inches apart. See our installation page for details.

Can I install Great Lakes Tin Ceiling tiles as a backsplash panel behind my stove?

Yes, our Great Lakes Tin panels can be cut to use for backsplash. The tin panels can withstand heat up to 300 degrees F., making it a great decorative option behind or near most stoves. We recommend nailing the panels up instead of using adhesive for this application as the heat could soften the adhesive. Make sure your stove does not exceed 300 degrees at the tin tile location.

Do your products have a California Proposition 65 warning?

You may see a warning on this product regarding California’s Proposition 65, the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986. It is intended to help Californians make informed decisions about protecting themselves from chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm. The Proposition requires the state to maintain and update a list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.

Proposition 65 is designed to inform consumers. This is not the same as a regulatory decision that a product is “safe” or “unsafe”. Our products emit no volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) and are in no way harmful if the product is used for its intended purpose. At Acoustic Ceiling Products, customer satisfaction is our number one priority and we will be happy to provide any additional information, technical specs or data you may need on any of our products.