Friday, 5 October 2012

Tile Types

There can be a lot of confusion these days between ceramic and porcelain and what the real difference is. With all the different types of tile out there, we are going to break it down for you and give you a few examples:


Porcelain tile:

Porcelain tile is generally made by the dust pressed method from porcelain clays which results in a tile that is dense,impervious and fine grained. They usually have a much lower absorption rate than ceramic tiles making them frost resistant. Glazed porcelain is much harder and suitable for wear than a ceramic tile, making porcelain suitable for any type of traffic and application(wall or floor) .


Ceramic Tile:
These tiles are generally made from red or white clay and fired in a kiln. These tiles are used in both floor and wall applications, are softer and easier to cut than porcelain and usually carry a PEI rating up to 3. Suitable for light to moderate traffic.

Natural Stone: 


Travertine (filled and honed)
Travertine (tumbled)
Natural Stone: (covers: granite, marble, travertine,limestone,slate)
   Natural Stones all share a common characteristic: they are formed out of minerals over long periods of time, creating unique, varied and incomparable looks. These types of flooring need to be used with caution as some like slate carry a very uneven texture. Natural stone is a beautiful choice but will need to be sealed as they are porous.

PEI Ratings:
     The Porcelain Enamel Institute grades tiles for durability and abrasion resistance to guide appropriate usage. PEI ratings are usually located on a tile sample board. This allows you, the consumer to be able to tell if a specific tile is right for your job.
Here are the 5 ratings and what they mean:

PEI Class 1:
(No Foot Traffic)
recommended for wall use in commercial or residential only.

PEI Class 2:
(Light Traffic)

recommended for both wall use and bathroom floor applications only

PEI Class 3:
(Light to Moderate)
recommended for countertops, walls and floors where normal foot traffic is expected.

PEI Class 4:
(Moderate to Heavy)

recommended for all residential applications as well as medium commercial and light institutional.

PEI Class 5:
(Heavy to Extra Heavy)
recommended for all residential as well as heavy commercial and institutional applications

Hopefully this helps when your ready to pick your dream tile!!

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