Bathroom floor tiles are the “go to” medium as you begin a remodel. It offers durability, stain and moisture resistance, as well as design options that are virtually endless. Tile fits with any design style.
Tile sizes vary widely, from large 24 in squares down to tiny one inch squares. When you take into account the color, style and design options in can be over whelming. In fact, the only drawback to tile flooring is its almost limitless possibilities. We’ll breakdown the different kinds of tile to give you a head start on your design.
Porcelain and Ceramic – These two types of bathroom floor tiles share many more similarities than differences. They are made the same way, although their exact composition varies slightly. They are both waterproof and easy to care for.
Porcelain – It is the harder of the two, made with less clay and more feldspar. This composition also renders it more scratch and chip resistant. It can also be made “full-bodied” the process of keeping the color consistent all the way through the individual tile. This makes repair much simpler.
Ceramic – This tile is slightly less expensive and easier to install. But either option is a good choice.
Natural Stone – These bathroom floor tiles are quarried stones, with many different finishes. Some are hardier than others, but all invoke a natural beauty that will add charm and value to any home.
Limestone, Marble & Travertine – The warm tones of these stones evoke a cozy, snug atmosphere in any bathroom. Their only drawback is something called etching. Etching is a chemical reaction that occurs when unsealed stone comes into contact with acidic or alkaline food or products. Food products aren’t usually a problem in the bathroom, but some cleaning products can be very harsh.
These stones can be polished, but because of safety concerns that finish isn’t recommended for bathrooms. Instead try a tumbled finish that helps with traction when wet.
Slate – Slate tiles have an almost masculine feel and their deep, rich colors are beautiful to behold. It can be difficult to choose durable slate tiles. Some slate is long lasting while other pieces seem to crumble with minimal wear. Because of this variance, slate is recommended for low traffic areas.
Whether or not to seal bathroom floor tiles is a subject that comes up frequently. The only reason to seal stone is because stone is porous and sealing cuts down on staining. That’s critical in a kitchen or on a countertop, but much less so in a shower stall or a low traffic bathroom. So let your room usage determine the necessity of sealing your floors.