Porcelain tile is one of the most popular choices for tile flooring. Compared to ceramic tiles, porcelain is a denser, less porous and harder option that offers greater stain and water resistance. Porcelain tile has unmatched design versatility and can often mimic natural stone varieties, such as granite and limestone. There are two basic types of porcelain tiles, through-bodied and glazed. Through-bodied porcelain tiles give off colors and textures that run all the way through the entirety of the tile, which helps to disguise any chips or scratches that may occur. Since through-bodied tiles contain no glaze that could potentially wear-off, they are extremely strong and durable. This feature makes through-bodied porcelain tile suitable for floors, walls and even countertops.
Glazed porcelain tile is completely covered in a wear layer (or hard finish) that is typically colored by adding pigmentation to the glaze itself, prior to its application. Glazed porcelain tile is also very strong and dense, and offers a much wider range of colors and designs than its through-bodied counterpart.
Wood-look tiles have become an immensely popular option in recent years. Hardwood flooring is notoriously difficult to maintain because it scratches, dents, warps, cracks and chips under stress, and oftentimes can be damaged by high-traffic and pets. Hardwood flooring also needs to be cleaned regularly and refinished/resealed every couple of years.
Alternatively, wood-look tiles are easy to clean and maintain. You don't have to be as careful regarding the type of cleaners you use on it and because of their extraordinary strength and durability, you needn’t worry about children or pets damaging your wood-look tile flooring. And even if damage does occur, you can replace a single tile (or multiple tiles) easily, without having to redo an entire section of flooring. To keep your wood-look tiles looking their very best, it is recommended that a new coat of sealant be applied approximately every 3-5 years to prevent moisture from seeping into the tile or grout due to the high humidity levels we have here in Southwest Florida.
Ceramic tile is a great option for flooring in kitchens and bathrooms because it is easy to clean and doesn't harbor bacteria. Ceramic tile is rated from zero to five based on hardness; zero through two is suitable for wall tile, three is good for most residential uses, and four and five are hard enough to be utilized in commercial applications. With the harder, vitreous tiles in particular, you would have to drop something really, really heavy to cause any sort of damage to the tile itself. Because of the natural strength and extraordinary ability to withstand high pressure of the glaze that is applied to glazed ceramic tiles, not even a stiletto heel can harm them!
Here at Classic Floors & Countertops, we carry a wide range of tiles for both residential and commercial application. With everything from wood-look tile and luxury tile imported from Italy to "green", environmentally-friendly and anti-bacterial options, you’re sure to find the perfect style to fit your lifestyle and transform any home into your dream home.