Types of Tile: Pros and Cons

Today, it’s easy to see that there are numerous options to choose from when it comes to tile flooring. Within those options, there are also different price points and styles that can make it feel really overwhelming to decide just which type of tile is right for your space. Don’t let the wide selection of tile flooring overpower your chance to show your personality through design. In fact, you’ll find that while there are many types of tile to choose from, reviewing their pros and cons will help you narrow down to the ideal tile choice that will suit your space, style and budget.

Below is a list of the most common types of tiles as well as their advantages and disadvantages:



Price: $2 to $7 per square foot

What is it? A mix of clay, minerals, and water, ceramic tiles are fired at high temperatures. Glazed styles are then treated with a liquid glass coating and fired again, creating a hard, stain- and scratch-resistant surface. Unglazed tiles are sometimes referred to as “quarry” tiles.

Best for: Ceramic tile is typically affordable, durable, easy to install and comes in a nearly endless array of colors and designs.

But: Colors can vary from lot to lot and ceramic is not ideal for high impact areas. Handmade or “art” tiles can be extremely pricey.



Price: $3 to $7 per square foot

What is it? Porcelain tile is a type of ceramic tile that is fired at a higher temperature than standard ceramic, making it denser and less porous.

Best for: Use stain- and impact-resistant porcelain tiles on floors, walls, backsplashes. It’s easy to clean and comes in a wide variety of styles.

But: It requires a special setting material designed to adhere non-porous materials—DIYers often buy the wrong one. Check with the manufacturer to be sure you’re using the recommended adhesive.



Price: $7 to $30 and more per square foot

What is it? Thin pieces of glass sold individually or as a mosaic, sometimes with other types of tile, on a mesh backing.

Best for: Colorful, reflective, easy-to-clean glass tile is best for walls and backsplashes. Some glass tile is rated for use on floors. The wide range of colors gives glass tile great “wow” factor.

But: It can be expensive and difficult to install. Because the tiles are transparent, the adhesive is visible through the tile. Unless you’re highly skilled, getting professional-looking results is difficult for a DIYer.



Price: $9 to $17 per square foot

What is it? Handmade of natural materials, cement tiles—also known as encaustic or Cuban tiles in the U.S.—typically boast bold patterns.

Best for: Resilient and beautiful, cement tiles are appropriate for floors, backsplashes and walls.

But: They’re pricey and not as common as other tiles, so your installer may not be used to working with them. Also, cement tiles are prone to etching by acid or harsh detergents and must be sealed on installation and resealed periodically.



Price: $6 to $15 per square foot

What is it? Pieces of natural stone—granite, slate, travertine, marble, onyx, sandstone, to name a few—cut into thin, regular pieces, stone tile has a rich, one-of-a-kind look.

Best for: Use stone on walls, backsplashes, or floors. Get the look of a granite countertop for less by using granite tiles instead of a slab.

But: Most stone tile can be damaged by exposure to water, pigment, or acid, so be prepared for extra maintenance. Seal on installation and reseal every 10 years.

Need more help deciding which type of tile is right for your home or business? Contact us or visit us at our Design Center today!


Today’s Tile Trends

When designing a room, flooring is one of the most important components to the overall look of your space. Because of their combined style and functionality, tile flooring is a popular choice among both homeowners and homebuilders. Tiles are durable, easy to clean and come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. There are so many tile designs to choose from – you’ll be able to easily find a great match for your living space.

Below are the latest tile flooring trends:


Small Mosaic Tiles

Small mosaic tiles are perfect for small rooms because they are easier to install in this type of rooms than large ones. Specifically, small mosaic tiles are a hot trend in bathrooms that are moisture-prone, since smaller tiles mean more grout lines and traction.



Wood-Look Porcelain Tile

Wood-look porcelain tiles provide the beautiful style of hardwood flooring, but also comes with the durability and moisture resistance of porcelain. This tile flooring is one of the hottest trends today, thanks to the advancements in recent manufacturing processes. Wood-look porcelain tiles can be manufactured in what are called planks, or tiles that are rectangular in shape.



Oversized Travertine Tile

Oversized travertine tile are used more commonly in ranch-style homes in the hot Southwest. Travertine tiles have a cooler feel under the foot, which helps beat the heat in these warm regions. These tiles also work great for climates that experience some seasonal chill, because it maintains and distributes radiant heat better than wood.



Stone-Like Porcelain Tile

Natural stone looks beautiful, but it is also prone to stains and chips, unlike porcelain. This is why stone-like porcelain tiles are a hot trend right now with homeowners. You get the charm of a cobblestone look with the chip and moisture protection of porcelain.


Natural Stone Tiles

Natural stone is a great choice for the outdoor areas of the home, especially walkways, outdoor bars and kitchens and around the pool. Because natural stone comes from nature, it can withstand the elements. Slate is a popular type of natural stone because it is less slippery.


Want to see more? Visit our Design Center to see these beautiful tiles up close and get recommendations from our design experts. For more tile trends, you can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.


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