Choosing Tile Flooring
As a home owner you should put a lot of thought into choosing the right floor covering since flooring is something that is used daily and the costs are an investment in your home’s value. Ceramic, porcelain and stone tile are durable floor choices that are extremely popular with home owners and suit many different home styles. When considering a tile design for your bathroom or kitchen, it’s a good idea to think about color, size and texture. Unglazed ceramic tile is a much safer choice for bathroom floors than glazed tile although it does require sealing to prevent being easily stained. Although both glazed and unglazed ceramic tile are slip-resistant under regular conditions, the glazed type tends to become slippery when water is present. Since bathrooms are typically the wettest rooms in a home, a non-slippery floor tile design is very important. A rough-textured stone floor such as slate can work well in bathrooms to provide good looks plus safety from slipping.
Natural stone is another popular tile material. These include travertine and marble tiles. High cost can be a factor with natural stone tile, but ceramic tile manufacturers have started creating ceramic tile designs that feature natural stone look and finish. These tiles finish includes varying texture, pattern and chiseled and hammered edges.
Choosing the grout color is also important. For example, it should be kept in mind that darker grout is often desired, as it tends to hide dirt better than the lighter color grout. Therefore, high traffic areas are typically better off with dark grout, unless you are willing to spend some extra time keeping the light color grout clean. Additionally, a grout sealer should be applied after the grout is dry (at least 7 days), as this will usually make it waterproof and easy to clean.
The tile size to use in your floor tile design should be based on your personal preference, but room sizes often matter. The general rule of thumb is the larger the room, the larger the tile. If you want to combine different sizes of ceramic tiles to form unique tile patterns in your rooms, it’s a good idea to first make sketches of various possibilities and then take a look at some tile displays in flooring showrooms. And if your design is complex, you will definitely need a highly experienced flooring contractor to install your floor.
As a stable base for floor tiles, it is also advised the tiles to be attached to fiber rock or plywood rather than directly to the subfloor, unless the surface is made of concrete. For shower walls or walls around the tub, backer board should be used instead of drywall. It is durable and resistant to moisture. While the installation of a proper base for tiles does add some expense to the cost of the installation project, that expense is easily justified by the years of enjoying a floor that remains level, strong and intact even with constant use.