Ceramic Tiles by Agrob Buchtal Support Healthy Indoor Climate of the Eco-House

The eco-house " Ourplacetobe" is a sustainably built home by Andrea Hörndler and Hannes Wizany from Austria. After approximately two years of intensive searching, they found the perfect plot of land near Linz: engulfed in nature, yet not too far from the city. Their declared goal: an ecological residential building no more than 100 square metres in size, which skillfully combines their demands with regard to sustainability and design. Agrob Buchtal's tile played a big role in not only making the space look good, but also in making a direct contribution to ecological building with the innovative Hytect surface ensuring a healthy indoor climate.


Photo credit: Lumina Kreativagentur

Imposing architecture on stilts

On the steep hillside plot, the "eco-house", built on stilts and largely of wood, catches the eye through its imposing architecture alone. In order to avoid sealing the ground, Hörndler and Wizany deliberately decided against building a basement. A support structure made of recycled steel carries the house and makes it look like a floating “living box”. The wood used comes from sustainable Austrian forestry, the insulation is made of straw blown in after the wheat harvest, and in the interior, building panels made of straw, clay slabs, and clay plaster provide a climate-regulating effect.


Photo credit: Lumina Kreativagentur

Sustainable floor and wall tiles

Ceramic tiles meet the ecological criteria, because they are made from natural raw materials with clay as the main component. Additionally, in the sum of their properties, ceramic tiles are one of the most sustainable floor and wall coverings of all. Almost all Agrob Buchtal tiles come with the innovative Hytect surface, providing special additional benefits: an antibacterial effect without chemicals, a neutralizer of unpleasant odours and air pollutants, and an are extremely easy to clean surface. Agrob Buchtal's tile makes it possible to design a bathroom ecologically and look chic at the same time.


Photo credit: ourplacetobe

Ceramic tiles which can do more

The effect of Hytect is based on the principle of photocatalysis. For this purpose, titanium dioxide is durably baked into the glaze of the ceramic tiles as a "catalyst" which, when exposed to light, effects a reaction between light, oxygen, and air humidity. In this way, active oxygen is formed which, on the one hand, eliminates unpleasant odours and air pollutants including formaldehyde, tobacco, kitchen fumes, and typical WC odours. On the other hand, the active oxygen decomposes and inhibits the growth of micro-organisms such as bacteria, mould, algae, moss, and germs without chemical substances.


Photo credit: ourplacetobe

The ceramic tiles provided with Hytect coating are also hydrophilic - i.e. water-friendly - and are therefore particularly easy to clean. Instead of forming drops, the water spreads evenly as a thin, flat film on the tile. The advantage: dirt is washed down by the water film and can then be easily removed. Hytect thus significantly reduces the use of cleaning agents and protects the environment.


Photo credit: ourplacetobe

Furthermore, the photocatalytic effect of Hytect does not wear off, but rather is activated again and again by light alone. Normal room lighting is sufficient for this purpose.

Trendy metro tiles

The District series of Agrob Buchtal convinced Andrea Hörndler and Wizany with its glossy glaze, which is cleverly accentuated by the bevelled edges on all sides. The collection is inspired by the typical tile claddings of metro stations in big cities like Paris or London. It was used in 10 x 25 centimetres format on the walls in the bathroom and WC, and in 5 x 10 centimetres format in the kitchen. Grey floor tiles from the Agrob Buchtal collection help to create a harmonious overall picture in this combination. And, of course, they also have the innovative Hytect surface for healthy indoor air and better living quality.

For more sustainable features of the house, visit Andrea Hörndler and Hannes Wizany's blog.


Andrea Hörndler and Hannes Wizany, Photo credit: ourplacetobe


Working with clay since 1755, displaying a high degree of quality and discerning design in the form of ceramic, AGROB BUCHTAL offers architects a “raw material for architecture” that reveals the scope of design. At the same time, consistently systematic concepts ensure the essential basis despite the great variety of ceramic tiles, colours, and formats. The innovative HYTECT surface coating offers revolutionary properties, providing valuable contributions to environmental protection. High flexibility during the development of individual solutions and services, such as the Architects’ Service which has been appreciated for several decades, has also contributed to the reputation enjoyed by the company.