The Beginner’s Guide to Non-Slip Outdoor Tiles

29th Sep 2023

The Beginner’s Guide to Non-Slip Outdoor Tiles

Want to spruce up your outdoor space with tiles for a modern look? We got you. Whether it's a deck, patio or pool area, outdoor tiles or, more specifically, 'non-slip outdoor tiles' are a fantastic choice because of their safety, durability and high resistance to the elements of nature. 

Non-slip outdoor tiles at Tile Space come in a wide range of styles, finishes and grip ratings. To make your life easier, we’ve put together this ultimate guide with everything you need to know about outdoor tiles, including explaining what to look for in a non-slip tile and explaining the basics of grip ratings. 

We've also answered some common questions, like "What are the best outdoor tiles for steps?" and "Why do you need deck jacks for outdoor tiles?", and more. So, without further ado, let's get into the basics of outdoor tiles.


What is the best tile to use outdoors?

The best tile to use outdoors is one that is non-slip and has a grip rating of R11 and higher. This ensures that your outdoor tiles provide a safe surface for walking on.

Non-slip outdoor tiles are perfect for outdoor areas such as

  • Pool surrounds
  • Patios
  • Walkaways
  • Steps

When selecting an outdoor tile, it’s important to take into consideration,

  • The type of area you’re tiling
  • How much foot traffic the area will receive

For areas that will receive heavy foot traffic, it’s best to select a tile with a higher grip rating.

R11 is the most common grip rating we see among tiles for high foot traffic.

Explore our outdoor tile collection here and see a wide range of grip ratings.


What material is best for non-slip?

The best material for non-slip outdoor tiles is porcelain. Porcelain is a highly durable material that can withstand exposure to the elements. It’s also resistant to scratches and stains, so you don't have to worry about damage from everyday wear and tear.

Featured Guide: Best Tiles for Outdoor Patios and Decks


What type of tile is not slippery?

The best type of tiles that aren't slippery is exterior grade R11 or higher-rated porcelain tiles. These flat outdoor tiles have a more textured grip surface which makes them less slippery. The textured surface of the tile provides traction and reduces the risk of slipping.

Our huge range of non-slip outdoor tiles includes a variety of textures, from smooth to rough, so you can find the perfect tile for your project. 

Want ideas on how to style your outdoor space? Check out our Outdoor Tile Inspiration Hub for the latest trends and classic ideas.


How do I make existing outdoor tiles not slippery?

If you’re looking to make existing outdoor tiles not slippery, then there are a few options. One option is to apply a non-slip coating or treatment to the tile surface. These products will create a textured surface that provides extra grip and helps prevent slips and falls.

Another option is to use an anti-slip mat or adhesive strips on the tile surface. This will help increase traction and reduce the risk of slipping.


What are non-slip tiles called?

There are lots of different technical terms for non-slip tiles; in our range, non-slip tiles are called grip tiles.

Here are some other terms you might hear;

  • anti-slip tiles
  • tactile tiles
  • slip proof tiles
  • non-slippery tiles
  • outdoor tiles

Related Guide: 5 Concrete Look Tile Ideas For Smart + Superior Outdoor Spaces


Grip Ratings Explained

When selecting outdoor tiles, it's important to consider the grip rating. Grip ratings indicate the slip risk of the tile.

Based on an international slip resistance test, the higher the rating on the ‘R’ scale, the better the slip resistance.

Outdoor tiles are in the range of R11 to R13.


Rating Guide:

  • R11: (Standard/ most common slip rating). Suitable for interior and exterior use.
  • R12: High Slip Resistance. Suitable for outdoor use, such as pools, patios, and balconies. It can be used in light commercial areas.
  • R13: The highest level of slip resistance. Ideal for ramps, stairs, swimming pool surrounds and heavily trafficked external areas.


Installing Outdoor Tiles


Can you put outdoor tile over concrete?

When installing outdoor tiles, you must ensure that you have the correct base for your tile.

The best base for outdoor tile is a concrete slab in combination with an appropriate adhesive for the type of tiles you are using.

Ensure that the surface is clean and free from cracks or defects before laying the tile.


Do you need to waterproof under outdoor tiles?

You don’t need to waterproof outdoor tiles laid on ground level. Waterproofing under outdoor tile is only required if the tiles are laid on first-floor balconies- and this is only if it uses a 20mm paver on the decking jack system.


Do outdoor tiles need grout?

Yes, you have to use grout when installing outdoor tiles with 10mm tiles. If you’re using 20mm tiles you don’t need to use grout.

Grouting the 10mm tiles will prevent water from seeping into the structure and the surrounding areas of your outdoor space.

Be sure to choose a grout colour that complements your outdoor tile choice.

Need some inspiration? Check out our outdoor inspiration page here


Deck Jacks - What Are They & Why Do I Need Them?

If your outdoor tiles are 20mm or thicker tiles and installed on a deck, you need to consider using deck jacks to raise them off the ground.

This will ensure that the tiles are even and level as well as provide a gap between the tile and the surface for drainage.

Deck jacks will also help to provide additional grip and reduce the risk of slips and falls.

Deck jacks are only used for 20mm or thicker tiles, and not for 10mm tiles on jacks. Deck jacks are great if you don’t want to pour concrete.



Are non-slip outdoor tiles suitable for steps?

Yes, absolutely! Non-slip outdoor tiles are ideal for steps as they provide excellent grip, even in wet conditions.

When selecting tiles for steps, look for a tile with a higher grip rating, like R11 or R12. This will ensure that your steps remain safe and slip-free all year round.


Beren Light Grey Grip

Featured: The Beren Light Grey Grip 60 Tile

Our Beren Light Grey Grip 60 tile creates a sleek and modern look in this outdoor area. The light grey tone complements the monochromatic colour combination of the home's exterior, providing a seamless transition between the indoor and outdoor spaces.


Can non-slip tiles be stylish?

Absolutely! Tiles with a non-slip finish can be stylish and on-trend! Tile Space has a fantastic range of non-slip outdoor tiles in a huge selection of styles, colours, and designs.

Here are some examples of our stylish range:


Scandinavian Outdoor Tiles




Our Nordic Grip tiles are a great option for creating a Scandinavian style in your outdoor area.

The tile has a subtle grain effect finish with a non-slip grip, perfect for steps and pathways.


Contemporary Outdoor Tiles

.Outdoor Area with Fireplace

Our Pietra Dark Grey Grip tile is a great choice for a modern outdoor area.

The contrast of the dark grey colour and soft white veining of the tile makes it ideal for creating a contemporary look in any outdoor space.


Rustic Outdoor Tiles


Beige Concrete w/ blue plates

Our Navona Bone Cross Grip tile is a great choice for creating a rustic outdoor area.

The tile's subtle texture and beige tones give it an aged look, perfect for a countryside or beachside style.


Wrap-Up: Key Points On Non-Slip Outdoor Tiles

  • Non-slip outdoor tiles are a great option for outdoor spaces like decks, patios and gardens, as they provide safety, durability and high resistance to natural elements. 
  • The best tile material for outdoor use is porcelain, with a grip rating of R11 or higher. 
  • Consider the type of area and amount of foot traffic when selecting an outdoor tile. 
  • Non-slip outdoor tiles are also referred to as anti-slip, tactile, slip-proof, and non-slippery tiles Non-slip outdoor tiles with a high grip rating, like R11 or R12, are the best for steps. 
  • For 20mm or thicker outdoor tiles on decks, 'deck jacks' are recommended to provide additional grip and drainage. 
  • Outdoor tiles can be stylish! Tile Space has a wide range of non-slip outdoor tiles in different styles, colours, and designs. 

We understand that selecting outdoor tiles for your project can be overwhelming, so our team of expert tile advisors is here to help! Our experienced advisers have helped hundreds of clients find the perfect non-slip outdoor tiles for their specific needs. So, book a free tile consultation today and let us help you create the outdoor space of your dreams!