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Floor Tile & Stone Information
Ceramic Floor Tile Basics
Made using a variety of natural materials including different types of stone and clay, flooring type is typically sorted into one of two broad categories:
Ceramic floor tile is made from clay that has been molded and then heated under extreme pressure. There are two main types:
- Porcelain tile is a ceramic material that contains up to 50% feldspar crystal, which, when heated under extreme pressure, becomes a glasslike material with incredible hardness and durability
- Non-porcelain ceramic tile is the traditional variety made from any combination of minerals that include white, red and brown clay
Ceramic tile of either type can also come in glazed or unglazed varieties. Glaze is a glass-like surface coating that can be any color or pattern. This opens up a world of design possibilities, while adding extra stain, scratch and moisture resistance to the tile.
Natural stone tile can be made from any variety of stone, including granite, marble, limestone, travertine and slate.
- Granite tile has a speckled appearance. The dense makeup of these tiles makes them scratchproof, perfect for kitchens and other high-traffic rooms in your home.
- Marble is well known as an elegant, decorative stone. These tiles are soft and porous, not well-suited to practical use.
- Limestone is a less dense sedimentary material that is more susceptible to damage than some other types of stone. However, its porous nature holds color well.
- Slate is similar to granite in density. Dark and sleek, it’s great for classy kitchens and entryways.
Where should you install tile flooring?
Ceramic tiles are made from clay that is heated to very high temperatures in a kiln. This process of “firing” the clay hardens it, creating a material that is useful for all kinds of applications.
A versatile design option that works well in many different rooms of the home, tile is especially common in kitchens and bathrooms, both on floors and walls, as well as in outdoor spaces.
When installing your own tile floors, keep in mind the particular type of tile you’ll be working with, as these will require different specific considerations.
For instance, ceramic tiles, particularly porcelain tiles, can generally withstand more wear and tear than many types of stone, especially when glazed. If you prefer the look of natural stone, ensure that the type you choose is appropriate for the space you’re working in. Porous rock, such as limestone, for example, is not a great fit for areas where liquid spills are common, such as bathrooms. Outdoors, rain can have the same effect, and make some types of floor tile slippery to walk on.
Learn more about the versatility tile can bring to your design the next time you visit Carpet Land – our flooring experts are always happy to chat in-store or over the phone!