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Drill holes in porcelain stoneware tiles and terrace slabs

Drilling fine stoneware tiles and terrace slabs is not difficult. You only need a tile drill , a cordless screwdriver or a flex.

Cost - From 14 euros. Difficulty Level - Easy. Duration - 5 min

In this guide, we will show you what porcelain stoneware is, where it is used and when it needs to be drilled.

There are very clear recommendations for selecting your tool and helpful step-by-step instructions for drilling fine stoneware tiles or fine stoneware terrace slabs.

Porcelain stoneware terrace slabs are drilled with a diamond drill bit + additional information

Porcelain stoneware is a popular material for indoor and outdoor use due to its beautiful appearance and durability.

Most commonly it is called:

  1. tile

  2. patio slab

  3. facade cladding


For various installations, such as attaching a lamp, the porcelain stoneware must be drilled, often up to 2 cm thick. 


1. Be careful when choosing your porcelain stoneware drill ! - Not every drill is suitable for drilling fine stoneware

Not every drill is designed for the hard material.

A carbide drill can quickly reach its physical limits and easily overheat. In the worst case, it will even be completely destroyed.

In very few cases, this will be able to drill a 2cm or even 3cm thick and hardened porcelain stoneware.

The only way to drill fine stoneware tiles or terrace slabs effectively, cleanly and precisely is to use diamond drill bits for tiles .

Banner image of a diamond drill bit for tiles mounted on a cordless screwdriver for drilling very hard tiles

1.1 What makes adiamond core bit the perfect tool for drilling porcelain stoneware?

A hard tile diamond drill bit is a tool with a diamond coated surface.

Due to the maximum achievable hardness of diamonds, this tool is ideal for drilling any hard rock, including fine stoneware.

The diamond particles attached to the steel body of the diamond drill are able to drill even the hardest materials with a scratch hardness of 9.

scope of application
porcelain stoneware
scratch hardness
bathroom wall and floor 5
Living room 6
Terrace slab 2 cm 6-8
Terrace slab 3 cm 6-9

The diamond particles do not drill the material like a conventional hard metal drill bit, but grind down the fine stoneware bit by bit.

2. What should I consider when drilling a hole in porcelain stoneware?

There are so many things that could go wrong when drilling. It would be all the more annoying with a beautiful porcelain stoneware tile, which could then possibly be damaged or, in the worst case, even have to be completely replaced!

  • Never use the maximum speed unless absolutely necessary - the danger with a very high speed is that the diamond core bit could slip off when drilling and thus scratch your tiles. There is also the danger of exposing the diamonds to such a high level of stress that they no longer function properly.

2.1 What are the ideal number of revolutions when drilling porcelain stoneware?

Maximum number of revolutions of the diamond drill bit for porcelain stoneware

machine choice

Up to 11,000 revolutions per minute

M14 attachment for the angle grinder

Up to 3,000 revolutions per minute

6-point socket for the drill

  • When drilling a hole in porcelain stoneware, please do not drill into the material behind it - it would be a shame to unnecessarily shorten the life of the diamond drill bit. You should therefore not drill into the material behind it, as it could be concrete, for example. The diamond drill bit for porcelain stoneware could also drill this material, but that would be a shame.

  • Masking off the area where the tile drill hole is to be made - A simple masking tape or adhesive tape can help you drill a hole in porcelain stoneware. If you stick it on the appropriate place, it can ensure a nicer drill hole result and counteract slipping.

  • 3. Drill fine stoneware tiles with a diamond drill bit

    With us you get the diamond drill bit for fine stoneware in all imaginable diameters.

    3.1 What other helpful articles are there for drilling tiles?

    4. Instructions for porcelain stoneware Drilling a < 2cm hole with a tile drill bit - tips and tricks

    Step 1: Clean the surface of your porcelain stoneware tiles if possible. Mount the tool on your machine.

    Step 2: Transfer the desired drilling to your porcelain stoneware tile. It can be helpful to mask the drilling site with some adhesive tape to provide additional protection against possible splintering.

    Step 3: Cover the surface generously with masking tape or masking tape. It can be helpful to make a kind of collecting container for the drilling dust. To do this, simply stick two pieces of masking tape together and bend the bottom part up. This will help collect the drill dust.

    Step 4: Place the diamond core bit on the drill hole and set the rotation speed to medium for the time being. It can be helpful to score the drill hole slightly beforehand or to countersink it with a carbide drill. This helps the diamond core bit "catch" itself faster.

    Step 5: Position the diamond core bit at a slight angle and start drilling. When the drill bit has "caught" you guide the machine into an upright position. Drill until the porcelain stoneware tile is completely drilled through.

    Step 6: Check your drill hole for cleanliness and vacuum off the resulting drilling dust.

      Tip: If the porcelain stoneware is particularly hard, you can add a little water to improve cooling.

      5. Instructions: Drill holes in porcelain stoneware tiles

      Step 1: Follow the instructions above

      Step 2: The only difference is that the patio slab, if it is not already installed, is slightly overhanging.

        5.1 Alternative: cut a hole in porcelain stoneware

        A hole can also be cut using a diamond cutting disc for porcelain stoneware and an angle grinder. However, this is only possible if the hole diameter is over 10 cm.

        Instructions for cutting a hole in porcelain stoneware

        Step 1: Transfer the desired hole size and mark in the appropriate place. Important: The hole must be marked on the back of the porcelain stoneware tile or patio slab.

        Step 2: Begin cutting the hole by placing the diamond blade in the center of the marked hole. Make an edge-to-edge cut.

        Craftsman cutting a hole in porcelain stoneware with an angle grinder and a porcelain stoneware diamond cutting disc

        Step 3: Make as many cuts as necessary (star pattern) until you can carefully separate individual pieces.

        6. Popular tile drill diameters when drilling a hole in porcelain stoneware.

        From our practice we know that there are certain diameters that are more popular or used more frequently.

        We hope we were able to help you with this guide and you manage to drill your fine stoneware tile or patio slab cleanly!

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        1 comment

        Sehr gut gemacht— Kompliment!!!

        Dietmar Stadie

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