Porcelain tiles have been around since the 10th century. But it wasn’t until the 19th that British artists found a way to mass-produce them. Inherently durable and flexible design-wise, they remain a popular building material to this day.
With modern technology, porcelain tiles can now mimic all sorts of flooring materials with accuracy so precise that it’s hard to tell the difference.
However, it’s important to have a clear idea of what to expect when installing them at home. Here, we discuss their pros and cons so you can make an informed decision.
Pros & Cons of Installing Porcelain Tile Flooring
Porcelain tiles are stylish and durable but they have drawbacks like any flooring material. This article discusses both aspects to help you gain a thorough understanding.
1. They Provide Many Design Options
High-quality porcelain tiles aren’t limited to just vintage designs; they can also imitate materials such as hardwood, marble, granite, and even steel. Visually, they’re almost indistinguishable from the real thing.
This gives homeowners and designers many options. Check out a wide variety of porcelain tile designs at The Reno Superstore.
2. They’re Durable
Durability is an important factor to consider when selecting the best flooring. Porcelain tiles are derived from ceramic but tend to be more durable. They’re made using fine clay particles that are fired at a high temperature. This creates a harder, less porous surface which enables them to withstand greater pressure. This makes them resistant to wear and more durable than ceramic floors.
Porcelain tile floors are also pet-friendly and hold up well to scratches. Since they are dense, they work especially well in heavy-traffic areas like living rooms and entryways.
3. They’re Easy to Maintain
Hardwood floors require a lot of work, but porcelain tiles need far less time and effort. In addition to looking great, they’re easy to clean and maintain, with no specialized cleaning regime required, except a moist cloth to clean up dirt.
Also, since they’re moisture resistant, porcelain tiles are widely used in kitchens and bathrooms.
Wall tiles and floor tiles have different PEI (Porcelain Enamel Institute) ratings. Tiles rated 5 and above should be used on floors to avoid breakage. (Fixing a broken tile is relatively simple, and it’s wise to keep a few extra of the same design around for an easy replacement.)
4. They’re Resistant to Water and Stains
Water can severely damage floors which is why waterproof flooring is so popular. Nothing comes close to porcelain tiles in this regard. Their non-porous surface prevents water seepage and even cracks from frost. This is why porcelain floors are used in outdoor settings as much as indoor ones.
They’re also impervious to staining, with stains easily cleaned with a damp cloth. Regular sweeping will keep away debris and dirt.
1. They’re Fairly Expensive
Porcelain tiles aren’t the most affordable flooring solution. The Reno Superstore offers wholesale prices on all our porcelain tiles, and it’s worth checking out our impressive collection. The material costs, along with the installation charge, will escalate your renovation budget. However, their relatively simple maintenance and decades-long lifespan make this initial investment worthwhile.
2. They Can Be Slippery
The smooth surface of porcelain tiles offers little to no friction, depending on their design and texture, making them prone to causing accidents. Slippery bathroom floors increase your chance of injury. However, there is a wide variety of textured tiles available that offer protection against such slips and falls.
3. They’re Difficult to Install
Porcelain tiles are heavy and difficult to install. In fact, they require special equipment and experienced flooring professionals. No DIY for this job!
4. Grout Maintenance
The joints between your tiles require periodic sealing with grout. While the tiles themselves do not allow any moisture or stain to seep through, grout is a different story.
Grout is a cement-based product that is not waterproof, and regular use causes it to wear out, leaving your tiles unprotected against water damage. Mould and mildew growth underneath the tile will subsequently damage your floors. Attending to grout periodically will increase the life of your floors significantly.
Porcelain tiles are a great choice if you want a stylish floor that convincingly mimics other flooring products like marble, granite, and hardwood, and they have their own performance advantages. While they may be hard to install and a little expensive, they’re a worthwhile investment that will easily last for decades. To learn more about these floors, consult the flooring experts at The Reno Superstore. We offer competitive prices on porcelain tiles alongside top-quality floor installation services in and around Toronto. We provide financing services; that’s an added advantage!