Because of its characteristics, Tile flooring has always been a popular choice of flooring material. Of course, depending on your budget, expectations, style, and purpose, there are multiple choices to cover your floors with. But if you’re looking for something that will last a good while without the need for constant attention, tiles are the way to go.
This article has shared the most prominent advantages and disadvantages of tile as your flooring material. We hope to give you a clear understanding of what it would look like and what you can expect after going with tile flooring. There are multiple tile options for your flooring. That is why, in the end, we have also named the different types of main tile options available. It will help you narrow down your options and make the best decision if you have set your heart on the tile.
The advantages of tile flooring
Many homes and offices favor tile flooring:
1) It is easy to keep clean
Because of its nature, protective coding, and strong sealant, dust, and stains on tile don’t have a good surface to grab onto. This will make tile easy to clean with just a short mop. Unlike other flooring materials like hardwood and even laminate, tile also holds its own against chemicals. The chemical resistance of tile lets you use any cleaning product and not worry about ruining your floor.
2) It is waterproof
The tile surface is finished and coded so that no water can get through. Water will sit on top of the tiles and dries up. This makes tile -especially porcelain tiles -a brilliant choice for kitchen and bathroom floors. Tiles even come with different water resistance levels to match all needs.
A small disclaimer, in this case, would be unglazed tiles. These tiles do not have a protective finish and need to be appropriately sealed to work and glazed tiles.
3) Tile flooring is durable
Tiles are made under tremendous pressure and can therefore hold up their own. Being so compact and concentrated, tile flooring does wonder in high-traffic areas where many people and pets parade regularly. With proper grouting and installation, only the falling of a considerably hard and heavy object can chip or crack your tile flooring. And even then, the damaged tiles are easy to replace.
For more information on fixing and preventing a fallen tile, see Why Tiles Fall and How To Fix Them – FixTman.
4) They come in unique and different patterns and designs
Just like rugs and wallpapers, tiles can be printed on. This makes way for many forms and layouts, from simplistic and uniform-looking to abstract geometry to luxury designs. You can find and pick one that will fit your style and desire.
Besides the imagery, tiles come in different forms and shapes. Tiles are commonly in squares and rectangles, but they also go in their polygons, diamonds, pinwheels, etc. After a quick search, it’s easy to find something surprisingly attractive.
5) Environment friendly
Tiles are primarily made of clay, sand, and water for those who care about using eco-friendly products. Unlike some other types of flooring, tile is quickly reintegrated back into nature.
6) Last but not least, property value
It’s always a good investment to go for a reasonable home upgrade. Similarly, what you spend on the flooring will get back into your pocket. Using the proper kind of flooring (in this case, tile) in the right place is a sweet addition to your house that will reflect the resale value.
The disadvantages of tile flooring
As popular as they are, there are a few reasons that, if applied, might throw tile flooring off of being the best option. You might want to rethink your flooring material of choice because:
1) Tile makes for uncomfortable ground
High durability and waterproofness mean that the tiles must be complicated and robust. As a drawback, tiles are uncomfortable standing or walking on for long periods. This can be significantly helped by using rugs and mats.
2) Tile flooring is slippery
Since tiles can be pretty slippery, they don’t give much grip to whatever is touching them. Now, having to worry about a slip and fall accident, water makes it much worse. This is why it is not recommended to use tiles in some high-traffic areas where water might be spilled. One way to tackle this problem is to go with smaller tiles for these areas to reduce the possibility of a slip and fall accident.
3) Tiles can get expensive
Tiles are typically a little costlier than other flooring materials. But, the installation of tile flooring is much more expensive than different types. The structure and grouting of tile flooring is not a DIY project. It isn’t easy and needs precision, so professional help is required.
4) It’s not so low-maintenance
Although the tiles themselves don’t let the water through, the grouting in the gaps is more porous. Liquids can get through the tile gaps and make annoying stinks and stains. To keep the tiles new and fresh, you need to think of regrouting once or twice every year, depending on the area’s traffic.
5) Tile flooring can be too good a heat conductor
Passing heat so quickly, tiles can be a pain in your feet in the cold season. They are always the better choice for kitchens and bathrooms. But, about the main areas in the house, unless you’re wearing thick socks or footwear all the time, tile flooring might be uncomfortable in the winter. This holds especially true for your bare-foot pets.
6) Tile is heavy
Tiles are one of the heaviest flooring materials. That makes them more laborious and costly to install. Besides, if the tile is chosen as the flooring material for the upper stories of a building, the structure needs to be checked and confirmed to be ready by a professional.
7) Tile flooring installation is not DIYer friendly
Tiles need to be grouted sufficiently and aligned correctly. If they are not installed correctly, they won’t last long. Tile flooring installation requires the right tools and experience, so you’re better off calling in a professional.
What type of tile should I go with?
Porcelain and ceramic are the most common and popular tile options if you plan to lay tiles on your floor. They are both made of clay, sand, water, and similar elements compressed into hard tiles. Both options are durable and come in different designs, prints, and patterns.
1) Ceramic tiles
Ceramic tiles have been around forever. And they are the cheaper option of the two. With that in mind, the color of ceramic tiles isn’t the same under the surface. This makes ceramic tend to highlight chips and cracks and show wear and tear sooner. Besides, ceramic is lighter than porcelain and might be better if the structure can’t take much extra load.
2) Porcelain tiles
Porcelain is a modern version of ceramic. The ingredients are more refined in porcelain, made under higher temperatures than ceramic. This makes porcelain the more concentrated, stronger, and durable option of the two. Unlike ceramic, porcelain is a good choice for outdoor flooring. The continual changes in temperature will not affect porcelain tiles as harshly as they do ceramic. The concentration in porcelain also allows for a higher level of water resistance. This makes porcelain the better option for bathrooms and kitchens. Above all, porcelain enjoys a uniformity of color across and through the material. This makes chips and cracks less visible and lets the tiles keep their new look for much longer.
3) Glass tiles
Glass tiles come in many shiny and dazzling designs and patterns. They can deliver stunningly fancy looks. The biggest drawback of glass tiles is the cost, especially glass flooring. When it comes to glass tiles, DIYing goes out the window. The tiles are costly, but the installation costs might soar through the roof. On top of being expensive, glass tiles are more vulnerable to wear and tear and highlight scratches (literally).
4) Stone tiles
Natural stone tiles like granite, marble, limestone, etc., have their own naturally unique texture. This makes every piece of tile look genuinely different. That said, stone tiles are not the lowest maintenance option. They need regular cleaning and are not hard to chip or crack. They also need proper finishing and sealing to make them waterproof.
Tile flooring can be more expensive than other options, but it is a well-worth investment. Apart from the resale value, suitable tile flooring can last you a lifetime without a need for much maintenance. We hope this article helped give you a clear idea of what tile offers and what option suits your needs the best.