How Do I Choose the Best Cheap Mosaic Tiles?

Lori Kilchermann
Lori Kilchermann
Woman painting
Woman painting

Choosing the best cheap mosaic tiles is a matter of examining the tiles before purchase to make sure they will be appropriate for your project. Checking with different retailers and contractors about leftover, scrap and discontinued tiles is another option for cutting costs. Discontinued tiles are often available at bargain prices, as are tiles that are in damaged boxes. Cheap mosaic tiles are also available online from discounters and private parties.

Partial boxes and partial skids of tile are often available at lower prices. While you may not find enough tiles of one color to complete your entire project, there may be enough tiles featuring complementary colors that can be grouped to complete your project. Buying odds and ends can often result in savings, especially if you have time to wait until enough of your desired tile becomes available in your store's sale or clearance area.

Depending on what type of project you are purchasing cheap mosaic tiles for, you may be able to use some damaged or as-is tiles. If you plan to use free-form cut tiles or small pieces, you may be able to cut around the bad spots on the damaged tiles. This process can be more time-consuming, but can result in substantial savings. Retailers also may offer discontinued tiles at a discount price.

When shopping for the best cheap mosaic tiles, it is important to make sure the tiles are suitable for the intended project. Tiles should be able to retain their color even after routine cleaning. It is important that mosaic tiles that will be subjected to frequent cleaning, such as tiles used for sink or stove back-splashes, should be color-fast and fade-resistant.

If purchasing cheap mosaic tiles that are seconds, it is important to check for color consistency among the tiles. Many retailers will offer deep discounts of obviously crushed, torn or otherwise damaged boxes of merchandise. It is a good idea to check tiles in damaged boxes to be sure they are whole or usable, and that the correct number of tiles listed on the box are still in the box. If the number is fewer than listed, you may be able to haggle to obtain an even lower price.

Cheap mosaic tiles are also available from online surplus and discount retailers. Websites that deal in used or unwanted merchandise from companies and private parties are also a source for cheap mosaic tiles. Another option is to contact tile installers and ask about purchasing the leftover or unwanted tiles.

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Discussion Comments


@wavy58 - I suppose every case is different, but sometimes, mosaic tiles get discontinued simply because they were not very popular. Companies usually don’t make a product for very long if it doesn’t sell very well.

I have known some lines of tiles to get discontinued simply because they were not pretty enough to be appealing to customers. If you are looking for tiles just for function and not for beauty, you could probably feel safe buying ugly discontinued tiles.

Perhaps the best thing to do is check online to see if there are any customer reviews of the tiles in question. Maybe you would come across a reason there.


Why are discontinued tiles so cheap? Is there something that the manufacturer does not want the public to know about them, like the reason they were discontinued is because they were found to be defective?

I’ve been tempted to buy some discontinued tiles to redesign my bathroom, but I can’t afford to lose any money on a faulty product right now. I don’t know how to go about finding out why the tiles are no longer being made, because if I ask someone at the company, they are not likely to give me an honest answer.


I went to a going out of business sale at a flooring supply store, and I got a great deal on mosaic tiles. The business was desperate to get rid of everything, and I had waited until almost nothing was left, so they were just excited to move those tiles out.

A few of them were damaged, but the majority were intact. I used them for several projects around the house. Each project was small, so it didn’t matter that all the tiles were not usable.


I once bought some tiles from an overstock warehouse. There were not enough green mosaic tiles to cover my entire floor, so I bought an identical box of brown ones to use with them.

I did check inside the boxes first, and though some were missing, the number was about the same in both boxes. I got a really good deal on these.

I alternated a green tile with a brown one vertically all over my floor. I ended up having more than enough to cover the whole thing.

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