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Tile

TILE TUTOR:

If you can imagine it, it can be done in tile.  Whether you are demure or daring, traditional or contemporary, whimsical or classical—it can all be interpreted in tile.  Color, textured surfaces, exquisite trim pieces are all at your command to create the floor of your dreams.  Understanding tile types will help you create just the right floor for you:

 Glazed Ceramic Tile:  These tiles are coated with glass-forming minerals and ceramic stains.  They have a matte, semi-gloss or high gloss finish, and they offer better stain and moisture resistance than unglazed tile.  Of note:      High-gloss tile finishes can be more slippery and scratches may be more visible.   Matte or textured finishes are conducive to better traction (especially when wet), and scratches and dirt will be less visible.

Unglazed Ceramic Tile:  These tiles are very hard and dense.  They come in various surface treatments and textures, which inherently gives them better slip resistance.  For that reason, unglazed tiles are often used for exterior use.  Keep in mind that because they are unglazed, they will require sealing to prevent staining.

Porcelain Tile:  Porcelain is the hardest and densest tile you can buy.  The term “through-body” porcelain is frequently used to denote that the color goes all the way through the tile.  Since porcelain can withstand temperature extremes, it can be used outdoors as well.  Porcelain tiles are non-porous and resist scratching.

 TILE SUMMARY:

Consider the thousands of options:  colors, sizes, textures, trim pieces, finishes.  All of these contribute to exceptional aesthetics, form, and function when you are designing with ceramic tile.  Today’s manufacturing processes offer you natural stone looks with the advantages of easy maintenance and significant cost savings!  Designers are enamored with the styling possibilities ceramic and porcelain tile can offer, and it’s easy to understand why.  There are sophisticated styles to suit anyone’s tastes and budget, and tile is an effective solution for high-traffic areas. 

Maintenance for ceramic tile floors is fairly easy.  Sweeping on a regular basis keeps dirt and grit from becoming imbedded in the tile.  Damp mopping will also help maintain the original beauty of your ceramic floor. 

NOTE ABOUT GROUT:  Grout can match, coordinate, or contrast with your tile.  If you choose a contrasting grout, it will give your floor a checkerboard effect. A closely matching grout will give a cohesive, smooth look to the floor.  Also, consider the traffic patterns for the area to be grouted.  Higher traffic rooms do well with darker grouts.  For ease of maintenance, a penetrating sealant should be used on the grout lines.  Note that you may see a change in the color of your grout over time.  This is a normal attribute of all grout.  Your flooring professional will help you decide the width of your grout lines.  Although thinner grout lines are frequently requested, the size of your tile actually helps determine how wide a grout line is required for a secure hold.

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