Ceramic tiles are great for both interior and exterior surfacing. Size, density and finish are the three attributes that are most important when deciding on which type will work best for you. The size depends on the room; larger tiles can visually expand the appearance of a room by having a cleaner finish and less grout lines. Denser materials are more durable and better suited for areas that may get wet. The finish determines the texture, and how slick or abrasive the surface will be. When purchasing tiles, it is important to understand that wall and floor tiles are not interchangeable; you may be able to find matching variations, but floor tiles are denser and usually have a textured surface to make them more slip resistant.
Ceramic tiles are available either glazed or unglazed. The kind you choose depends primarily on where the tiles are destined to go.
Glazed ceramics come in high-gloss, semi-gloss and matte finishes. A glossy finish protects the tiles from moisture and stains, and works well in kitchens. However, the gloss also makes glazed tiles more slick than those that are unglazed, and is more easily scratched. Texture and matte finishes offer more friction for walking and hide imperfections or stains.
Unglazed tiles are denser and more slip resistant than glazed, and they work well in outdoor settings. For protection against stains and moisture, unglazed tiles should be sealed. Some tiles are manufactured specifically for the outdoors. These tiles have very little water absorption, and weather damages and scratches are kept to a minimum. They are typically given a textured finish for safety, as precipitation, sprinklers, or splashes from a nearby pool can cause outside areas to become slippery.
Natural finishes have also become increasingly popular. While stone flooring can be expensive, tile stone replicas are more affordable and easier to take care off. Tile can be made to look like a variety of material such as marble, sandstone, even hardwood.
The are many ways to give your floors a unique appearance using ceramic tile. Different colors and finish styles can give your tiles a special look, and you can take your creativity even further by having the tiles placed in a decorative pattern, such as a checkerboard or diagonal effect.
Ceramic tiles are a highly versatile flooring option, making them a perfect addition to your home. Understanding what you are looking to get out of your ceramic floor and where it will be located will help you decide which type of tile will work best for you.
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