Friday, August 31, 2012

Tile 101

Here at Universal we love to use tile in home renovations because it is so versatile, durable, beautiful, easy to clean, easy to maintain, and affordable!  No matter what style your home is, there is a tile that would greatly compliment the look of your home. I’m not just talking the bathroom and kitchen floor either… I believe that there is a tile (or a combination of tiles) that would greatly compliment nearly every room in your home.
Ceramic and Porcelain Tiles:
Pros: Usually the most affordable. They come just about every finish, color, and size you could possibly hope for. Stands up to traffic and moisture better than nearly every other flooring choice (except concrete). Easy to maintain and very scratch resistant. If planned well and done right, ceramic or porcelain tile can look very rich, even on a small budget.
Cons: Cold on feet. A warmer can be installed beneath to help with this. If heavy objects are dropped on tiles, they can crack. Grout can stain or crack. On the bright side, replacing one tile or a small grout crack is usually a very simple and quick process. Just be sure keep a few extra tiles and extra grout on hand so you have an exact match if a repair needs to be made.
For about the same price as hardwood flooring, ceramic wood grain tiles are available. These gorgeous textured tiles come in just about every wood color you could possibly dream of, and are even shaped like hardwood boards. Check out to get a visual. Impressive, right? Imagine having the beauty of hardwood, but never worrying about warping, fading, scratching, refinishing, or water damage!
Natural Stone Tiles:
Pros: Come in several colors, sizes, finishes, and shapes.  Natural stone tiles are durable and absolutely beautiful. If you love the look of granite or marble counters, but you can’t (or don’t want to) pay the high price for solid stone, you could have a granite or marble tile counter installed instead.
Cons: Pits and holes, like found in some rough finishes, can become a hot spot for bacteria. Natural materials generally cost more. They require more care and maintenance than ceramic and porcelain. Can be also cold to touch and crack if heavy objects are dropped on them.
Flooring Tiles:
In general, flooring tiles are usually 12”x12”, but they can be found smaller, in different shapes, or in 16”, 18”, 20”, &  24”. I recommend using at least a 12” tile for flooring, or using a combination of tile sizes and including some 12″ (or larger) tiles.  In small areas, still use a 12″ (or larger) tile, but chose a solid color and match the grout color to the tile color. This makes the area look more open and less busy. There are always exceptions to the rule, for example; if recreating a classic look, you would want to use whatever type of tile that was popular for that specific time period.
Wall Tile/Backsplashes:
A couple personal backsplash favorites of mine are colored glass and slate. Colored glass tiles generally come in 12” sections of multi-color, rectangular or square shaped, small glass pieces matted together in a ready-to-hang pattern. They can be a little pricey ($5-$25 per foot), but if you only need them for a small area, they really can produce a huge bang for your buck! They are great for pulling several colors together, and are very easy to clean. Slate wall tiles will probably come with more size and shape options than glass would, and will give you a more earthy, natural, look. As a general rule, backsplash tiles should be smaller than your flooring tiles.
If you want more information or need help coming up with a beautiful, unique, tile design for your next home renovation, please call us today! (865) 202-8501

1 comment:

  1. Tiles wherever used gives an extremely attractive appearance to the place, infact completely transforms it from a dull to a completely chic look.