Ceramic and porcelain tile flooring are known for their beauty and function. These highly practical flooring materials have a wide range of color and design options. Their versatility offers you the ability to create unique patterns that will give your home the beauty you desire. These are great options if you are looking for something extremely durable.
Ceramic and porcelain can withstand quite a bit of punishment. They are also highly moisture resistant, so they are safe for damp areas such as basements, or bathrooms. Like hardwood floors, they can give your home’s market value a good boost because of the upscale look ceramic and porcelain add. Buyers appreciate the beauty, durability and easy maintenance of tile. You will also enjoy how easy they are to clean and maintain.
Types of Ceramic and Porcelain Flooring
There are really only two main categories of ceramic tiles. There’s the quarry tile, which is constructed from natural clay or shale. The other category, which is what most flooring is made from, is constructed using compacted clay dust. They all can either be glazed or not.
Glazed Tiles: The finishes on this type of ceramic tile are matte, high-gloss and abrasive. High-gloss is very slippery if it gets wet, so be very selective where you use this type. Abrasive is a slip-resistant finish, so it’s safe anywhere in the home.
Mosaic Tiles: Constructed using multiple clay types and beautified using color pigments, this is a great choice for homes seeking a unique beauty. This style is moisture resistant and holds up nicely against chipping.
Quarry Tiles: This style can come in several shapes like squares and hexagons. The colors are very natural earth tones, because they are made using a combination of unglazed clays. No colors are added. A variety of reds, grays and browns are obtained from the temperature and time of firing.
Porcelain Tiles: This is the strongest and hardest of the tile types, because it is made using extreme temperatures. These types of tiles hold up the best in high moisture areas because they absorb the least amount of water. They stand up great to high traffic and abuse.
How To Choose The Right Ceramic or Porcelain Tile
Determine the amount of traffic the area you install your flooring will have. Also determine what type of conditions it will be exposed to (i.e. moisture). Use the list above to see what tile will hold up the best. For example, if you think your tile may get wet and will also have people walking on it frequently, you may want to get an abrasive, glazed tile, as this is highly slip-resistant.
As far as choosing the right size goes, you should look at the size of the room as a reference. If you are installing in a smaller room, smaller tiles will be less overwhelming to the décor. The biggest you want to go in a small room is a 12” tile. Use bigger tiles for bigger rooms. The general rule is the bigger the tiles are, the less busy the room will look.