How to choose floor tiles
Choosing floor tiles? A great flooring choice for hallways, kitchen diners, bathrooms, contemporary living spaces and even outdoors, floor tiles come in ever more varied design choices. Pick from natural stone, such as terracotta, limestone or marble, or from manmade materials, such as porcelain, ceramic or concrete. Find out everything you need to know about floor tile materials, installing floor tiles, and tips for floor tile maintenance.
NATURAL OR MANMADE FLOOR TILE MATERIALS?
Natural stone tiles have unique textures and tones, but are more likely to crack or scratch than a manmade materials, and may need sealing once laid – and resealing in future. Manmade materials are usually more affordable and come in a wide range of designs, but tend not to have natural stone’s character.
NATURAL STONE TILES
Natural stone tiles typically come in natural, honed or polished finishes. Natural surfaces tend to be matt with texture and pitting; honed tiles are smooth but matt; polished tiles have a smooth sheen. The higher the polish, the more water-resistant, but also the more slippery the tile will be
Marble is porous so choose honed or polished finishes, particularly in a kitchen. Available in a range of colours, it’s a good choice for bathrooms.
Limestone comes in earthy shades and both textured and polished finishes. It can stain and scratch, so avoid putting it in high traffic areas, such as kitchens.
How to Choose Floor Tiles
Tiles are a great flooring option that can work for any room. They’re easy to clean, long-lasting, and stylish, but choosing the right floor tiles for your home can feel challenging. Luckily, it’s easy to choose floor tiles if you consider your needs and personal style. You can then select a material, incorporate your own style, and shop for the tiles you want.
Choose ceramic tiles for an inexpensive, classic option. Ceramic tiles are popular options because they are inexpensive and fit with any decor. You can choose large tiles or small tiles, depending on your preference. They are easy to install on your own, but you’ll need to work harder at keeping them clean, as they are porous and absorb liquids
Select porcelain tiles for a durable option that’s still budget friendly. Porcelain tiles are one of the most durable on the market, and they’re also water resistant. Another perk is that they’re easy to clean. Porcelain tiles have a classic look that is easy to fit into any style.
Opt for cork tiles if you want soft, quiet floors. Cork is a recent trend that can be a nice addition to any room, if you like the look. It’s great for people who want a floor that absorbs impact, and it’s also resistant to water and germs, making it a good choice for kitchens and bathrooms
Select bamboo floor tiles for a durable, sustainable option. Bamboo is becoming a popular choice for people who want to use environmentally-friendly materials in their homes. Bamboo tiles look similar to wood flooring, but they’re made of the fast-growing grass. You can find bamboo tiles in strips or planks
How to Choose the Right Floor Tile
There’s more to selecting a floor tile than meets the eye. Beyond choosing the color and style that you want, you should consider how much foot traffic the tile will get and if it fits in with current trends. Both of these factors will affect how long the tile will last before needing to be replaced because of wear or changing trends.
To kick off your selection process, you should first know the trends. Currently, large-format tile is leading the pack. This 12- by 24-inch tile is a stylish option for entryways, kitchens or bathrooms. On the other hand, small hex tile is a popular option for bathroom floors. This vintage option brings a classic look to any bathroom, but is too small for larger areas like a kitchen or entryway. Instead, another popular option for kitchens and entryways is plank tile that looks like wood. This option has been gaining steam for the last few years and remains a great way to get the look of hardwood with the durability of tile.
Speaking of durability, this is the next thing you’ll want to address to help narrow down your choices. You should ask yourself, how much foot traffic will this tile get? After installing a brand-new tile floor, the last thing you want to find is a crack or chip. That’s why you want to make sure that if you’re putting tile in a high-traffic area like an entryway or kitchen that it’s durable enough to stand up to the challenge. To find out how durable the tile you’re looking at is, check out its PEI (Porcelain Enamel Institute) rating. If the tile has a PEI Class 1 rating, you should not consider it for the floor. A PEI Class 1 rating means the tile is not meant for any foot traffic. It should only be used for wall tile. Ratings of PEI Class 2-5 are acceptable for floor use. Class 2 is meant for light traffic, while Class 5 rated tile is the most durable, meant for heavy to extra-heavy traffic.
Ceramic tiles generally have a PEI rating of Class 1-3, meaning they do not handle heavy foot traffic as well. The trade off is that they are generally less expensive than porcelain tiles. So, if you’re on a budget and working on a room with light to moderate foot traffic, ceramic tile may be the way to go.
Finally, you can consider natural stone tiles, such as travertine, marble, slate and limestone. These stone tiles are more fragile to work with because they are more porous and sensitive to acidity from fruit juices and alcohols. Therefore, they are not recommended for use in the kitchen. However, they are a beautiful option for entryways or bathroom floors and walls. If you’re looking for a unique, high-end look, natural stone tile may be just what you need.
How to Choose Tile Flooring
There’s a reason why so many homeowners love tile floors, as it is one of the most versatile floor coverings on today’s market. The best part is, it’s as functional as it is aesthetically pleasing. Not sure how or where to begin your journey to a home lined with multidimensional tiles? Flooring America associates are highly trained and enjoy helping you find flooring tiles that complement your décor.
Finding the Ideal Tiles for Your Home
Our reputable flooring store offers an array of tiles to upgrade the elegance of your residential interiors. Product lines are available in an array of colors, patterns, and styles so you can customize the look of any room in your room. Floor tiles are a conversation piece on their own! Let us help you find tiling that makes your visions come true or checkout our latest brand Floorcraft® Catlin tile flooring selections for ideas
Ceramic vs. Porcelain Tile
We offer two types of tiles at Flooring America: ceramic and porcelain. Our associates are knowledgeable about every type we sell, ensuring that you know all your options. We carry the best name brands in the industry at prices that won’t break your budget
Tile: Strong as it Is Beautiful
The great thing about either types of tile flooring is that they offer a number of benefits for appealing long-term use. You don’t have to stress about a spill if you have little.
important things you should consider when you’re choosing tiles
Before you start
Think about the style of your home. Have a look through magazines and online for images of tiles you like. Try and not go against the style of your home – instead, work with it
Small-sized tiles are usually suited to small residential areas such as kitchens, bathrooms and toilets
Large tiles make a room feel larger and airier. Using floor tiles on the walls will make the space seem more cohesive, but you can’t use wall tiles on the floor. A floor tile will have a harder glaze and will be made of harder materials to withstand traffic. In a small room, light-coloured tiles will make the space feel bigger. If you have a large room you have more options; you can chose from light to dark tiles.
Consider the general feel you want to achieve in the room you are tiling – serene and relaxing or moody and atmospheric? Unless you have a feature area such as a splashback, tiles aren’t normally the focus of a room, but they can complement other design features of a room. In a bathroom you might want a restful relaxing setting, so go for colours that blend well together. In a kitchen you might want a more vibrant option, so choose colours that contrast.
Don’t forget the importance of choosing the right grout colour. A contrasting grout will emphasise lines and the design, while a grout in a complementary colour as the tile will give a subtle effect. Ensure your grouted areas are sealed to prevent staining.