February 9, 2018 Ron Gauthier

A “Pre-Shopping” Guide to Tile Flooring

As you weigh your flooring options, at some point your attention might turn to tile. While not right for every situation, tile is often a terrific flooring choice due to its durability, long life, and versatility with regard to décor. But now comes the tricky part: There are so many different tile options on the market, that you might quickly become overwhelmed. This brief “pre-shopping” guide can help you narrow your choices.

Textured versus non-textured. One quality of tile that you should confront is textured versus non-textured options. Textured tile makes a better non-slip options, and is therefore best suited for areas like bathrooms. On the other hand, the non-textured tile flooring is usually a bit harder to clean, so you might not want to install it in a high-traffic area.

Foot traffic. Speaking of foot traffic, this is a major consideration when judging a particular tile’s durability. For high-traffic areas, a durable porcelain is a terrific choice, because it resists chipping and scratching.

Indoors or outdoors? For the most part, you’re probably considering tile flooring for indoor areas. However, if you are tiling an outdoor area, it would be wise to stay away from ceramic tile. Ceramic is more porous and won’t last as long when exposed to weather.

Ratings. Look at a particular tile’s rating, which will give you information such as whether it is glazed or unglazed. Also investigate information such as the tile’s water absorption, PEI rating, and coefficiencty of friction. We can explain these items in more detail as we guide you through the “advanced stage” of choosing tile flooring.

Grade. Grading refers to a tile’s quality and durability. Grades one and two are suitable for flooring, with grade one usually being more expensive. Grade three is suitable for walls or counter tops, but not floors, as they are not durable enough for foot traffic.

Color. Ultimately, this is a matter of taste, and you should choose the tile you love regardless of what anyone else thinks! But keep in mind that when you look at tile samples, it can be difficult to envision the end result when installed in a particular area. For example, darker colors add warmth to a space, but can end up making the room feel too dark unless you have a lot of natural light available.

Lighter shades can make rooms appear larger, but of course show dirt more easily. A tile that includes a variation of shades might be the best choice for high-traffic areas.

And remember, you don’t have to go with one solid color for the entire room! You can also design patterns using two or more types of tile, for a sophisticated look.

Measure the area to be tiled. Accurate measurements aid greatly in determining your overall flooring budget. Measure the length and width of the area, and then multiply those two numbers together to obtain the actual square footage of the room.

This step can get complicated when you’re tiling more than one room, plus hallways, entryways, and so on. Give us a call, and we will measure the area for you, and help you determine your exact needs with regard to tile flooring.

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