By now, you should already be aware of the fact that choosing the correct type of tiles for your home is no easy task: with the multitude of available options out there in the market, you need to do some careful research work before jumping the gun and purchasing whichever thing first catches your attention. Otherwise, you may regret your choice later on, realising that you could have saved time (and money) by choosing an alternative type of tile.Since you need a place to start, it is a good idea to at least get to know the most common types of tiles first. As you will see, all have different characteristics and properties, with some of them being much more useful for select applications than others.
- Ceramic – Ceramic tiles come in a wide variety of colours and shapes, making them suitable for use as decorating tiles on bathroom walls and similar surfaces. Most of the tiles used for decorative purposes are of the glazed variety. Unglazed tiles, which are also known as quarry tiles, are more durable and used widely in industrial flooring applications, both indoors and outdoors (nevertheless, they have a far smaller choice of colours than glazed ceramic tiles). Ceramic tiles usually don’t handle excessive moisture well, as they tend to grow mould quite quickly, and large amounts of water can make their surface very slippery.
- Porcelain – Porcelain tiles are often the best cost effective choice for indoor flooring, making them a quite popular type of tiling in general. The main reason why they are commonly used for tiling indoor surface is due to their high durability, resistance to wear and considerable water resistance. Their polished and refined looks will also increase the aesthetic appeal of the homes where they are installed in. They are also used in some niche applications like pool tiling.
- Natural Stone – There exist many types natural stones used for making tiles, including granite, marble, travertine, limestone, onyx, etc. The main advantage of natural stone tiles is that they are very long lasting compared to pretty much any other type of tile out there. Furthermore, their natural look is appreciated by some homeowners, as even the best imitations cannot actually reproduce the same look. While most of these tiles do resist water, they are not completely waterproof, which means that you need a balcony waterproofing membrane or similar to be pre-applied if you want to use them outdoors.
- Glass Tiles – Glass tiles are becoming popular for select application, such as when used in the form of small mosaic tiles in some bathrooms or kitchens. You may think that they wouldn’t be ideal, seeing as glass is very slippery when wet, but mosaic tiles have the advantage of an added grout surface, thus making them usable even inside bathroom showers without major trouble.