After weighing your options, you’ve decided to go with tile flooring. It’s beautiful, durable, versatile in style, and suits your needs… But now you find that you face even more choices! So, if you’re wondering, what is the difference between ceramic and porcelain flooring tile, read on. We’ll review some of the basic differences, so that you can begin to narrow your options.
Durability. Depending upon your needs, both ceramic and porcelain tiles are durable options. However, porcelain is far stronger, and can withstand high traffic and heavy machinery. Chips and cracks are somewhat more likely to occur with ceramic tiling, whereas porcelain tiles have been known to last decades even under heavy use.
Water resistance. Porcelain is far more resistant to liquid penetration, making it the superior choice in more damp environments. While porcelain has a water absorption rate of less than one-tenth of one percent, the absorption rate of ceramic is often greater than 3 percent. Therefore, ceramic might be a fine choice for your living room, but should not be used outdoors.
However, ceramic tiles can (and should be) glazed with a substance that protects it from liquid penetration. When glazed correctly, ceramic tile flooring can be used safely in kitchens and bathrooms.
Stain resistance. Due to its lower rate of water absorption, porcelain is often considered the superior choice for areas that are prone to staining. If you have kids or pets, this might matter to you. However, the glazing process for ceramic tiles, described above, will also provide plenty of stain resistance in most cases.
Versatility of design. Ceramic tiles are easier to cut, meaning you can use them in more intricate designs if you choose. You can create custom designs using two or more colors of ceramic tile, and cutting them into triangles, diamond shapes, and more.
Cost. Due to their increased density, porcelain tiles are harder to cut. They’re also heavier, making installation a bit more laborious. Generally speaking, porcelain tile flooring is more expensive than ceramic tile flooring, although the investment is likely to last decades.
On that note, give us a call or come see us. We can help you weigh your porcelain and ceramic tiling options, get you an accurate estimate, and help you choose the flooring that is right for your home.