Whether you’re re-doing your kitchen or your bathroom, chances are that tile is in your plans. There are a variety of tile types available. Choosing the best one depends on where you plan to put it and the amount of care you are willing to provide to keep it looking its best.
Natural stone tiles are commonly made from slate, granite, travertine, marble or limestone. The wide range of colors and textures make these tiles a popular choice in the home, especially in bathrooms because of the stone’s water absorption qualities.
• Benefits. Stone is durable and can withstand heavy use. Its natural look works well with a variety of décor styles, giving it a timeless quality. It’s especially well-suited to the bathroom because moisture doesn’t damage stone.
• Concerns. The primary concern with stone is staining. It isn’t often used in kitchens unless it is thoroughly sealed, because it can easily absorb grease and food stains. Stone is also one of the more expensive options, so it may not be suitable for large projects.
Few tile options give you more choices than glass. Glass tiles come in nearly every color imaginable. Frosted, textured, translucent, mirrored and opaque glasses are available in a variety of tile shapes and sizes.
• Benefits. The enhanced shine and reflective qualities of glass give a look of cleanliness and spaciousness to both the bathroom and kitchen. It works well on both the walls, as a backsplash, or as a flooring option. Glass is extremely durable, stain-resistant and easy to clean – water and a bit of glass cleaner is all you need. It works especially well in mosaics and a trim.
• Concerns. Glass can feel cold, so it may not be the best flooring option in a cool bathroom. It can also be slippery, so it’s often only used as an accent piece on a bathroom floor.
Ceramic tiles are becoming more common because of their versatility. Available in a range of colors and shapes, you can create almost any design with these durable tiles.
• Benefits. The tiles themselves are easy to clean and resist staining. You can also control the slip factor by choosing a ceramic finish that provides some slip resistance. Ceramic tiles are often used in kitchens, bathrooms, and as shower surrounds because of their durability.
• Concerns. Although the tiles are easy to clean, the grout lines are prone to staining and mildew. Sealing the grout can help prevent these issues, although they may requiring periodic resealing. When selecting ceramic tiles, quality matters. Low-quality tiles can be prone to chipping and cracking.
Stainless Steel, Copper and Metal
Metal tiles are becoming more popular due to their clean lines and easy maintenance. Durability and care requirements do vary depending on the type of metal chosen.
• Benefits. Most metal tiles can simply be wiped clean. Etching and tarnish can be an issue on some metals, like copper, so these are usually used in small applications, such as a kitchen backsplash. Constant moisture exposure can also cause the metal to age, so they are typically only used in kitchen applications.
• Concerns. Scratching and etching are the primary concerns with any metal tile. You can’t use abrasive cleaners and constant sweeping is necessary to prevent grit damage to metal floors. Metal is also cold, so it’s not the best option for a bathroom floor.
This post is brought to you by www.glasstileoasis.com. Benjamin Lamm is a communication specialist and blogger. Ben enjoys playing the guitar, spending time with family and social networking.