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Share to PinterestEverything You Need To Know About Ceramic Floors

Everything You Need To Know About Ceramic Floors

By Adam Morris
Share to PinterestEverything You Need To Know About Ceramic Floors

When it comes to home decor, flooring can set the tone. Good floors improve the aesthetic quality of a home, increase the property's resale value, and can even boost the mood of the people treading on them. They add a touch of elegance and class in a subtle yet effective way.

Ceramic tile is a popular choice, especially for kitchens and bathrooms. Here's what you need to know!


What are ceramic tiles?

Though traditionally, ceramic was simply clay that was fired in an oven at extremely high heat, today's "advanced ceramics" — which have myriad uses — are a combination of water, sand, and clay. These tiles are shaped, glazed (to give them any of a vast range of colors or patterns), fired, and then laid using grout, which is made from either epoxy or cement.

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The big pro: durability

Ceramic tiles are long-lasting because of the manufacturing process and the materials used. The tiles can last for years or even decades, depending on the curing process. There are Victorian houses with ceramic tiles that have lasted over a century.

Newer ceramic tile manufacturing processes incorporate cement and curing methods that make even better ceramic tiles. Depending on the pattern or color you choose, if a tile does break, it can be fairly easy to get a replacement.

Share to PinterestWoman choosing a new ceramic floor tile in a construction store
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They're water-resistant

Ceramic tiles usually have a glazed top that is waterproof, and the components themselves are water-resistant. It is because the materials are all porous and cannot get waterlogged.

This means the tiles are less prone to water damage than other types of flooring, which is great since bathrooms and kitchens are two of the more likely places to flood. Ceramic is also a good choice for pool or hot tub surrounds.

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And low-maintenance!

Ceramic tiles are easy to clean compared to wooden or vinyl tiles. They dry up quickly, and pretty much any detergent will work without damaging them. Additionally, they are resistant to hot water, unlike vinyl or wood flooring.

They are also stain-proof and can handle all types of spills without getting damaged. Unlike wooden tiles that need buffing and polishing, all you need to have clean ceramic floors is to clean them like you would linoleum.

Share to PinterestWoman Mopping The Floor In Kitchen
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There are unlimited design options

Ceramic tiles are versatile, and you can get any design and color under the sun, from striking solids in traditional or out-there colors to intricate patterns or individual pieces to place here and there to really mix it up. Forget about planning your kitchen decor around your floors — now you can do it the other way around!

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They're easy to install

Ceramic tiles are so easy to install, you can do it yourself. Like any tile, you need to take care to space them properly, and if you're creating a design, it's always best to lay them out beforehand, but the installation process itself is fairly straightforward. Online tutorials abound, with lots of options and workarounds for trickier spots.

Just keep in mind that, unlike vinyl or wood, if you need to trim or cut your tiles, you'll need a special tool.

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One downside: it's chilly

Ceramic tiles tend to be colder than other types of flooring because sand and clay repel heat. Be prepared to put down area rugs in spots where you stand for long periods, or consider installing heated floors before you lay your tile. Using epoxy can help make the ceramic a bit warmer.

Share to Pinterestinterior living room ceramic floor carpet
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They can be slippery

Ceramic tile with a glossy glaze can be slippery, so if you're wearing fuzzy socks to keep your toes warm, take care not to slide around. In the bathroom, this drawback can be especially detrimental.

Luckily, you can treat the tiles in problematic places with a rough surface, like you see around many pools. This option can allow you to put safety first without hiding your beautiful flooring under rugs.

Share to PinterestWhite tiles on a floor in bathroom
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Maintaining the ceramic grout lines is tedious

Ceramic grout lines can be really difficult to keep clean, especially if yours are white. They're narrow and the slight indent makes them perfect for collecting dirt and grime. Depending on the quality and material, they can chip and require regrouting, which can be problematic if they've weathered and changed color to no longer match the new grout.

The good news is, there are lots of tricks of the trade to help keep your grout lines sparkling and to repair them if necessary.

Share to PinterestGrouting tiles with a rubber trowel
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There's an expense involved

Ceramic tiles are pretty expensive compared to vinyl, linoleum, and laminate wood flooring. The average ceramic piece costs $3 to $7 per square-foot tile. Other, cheaper alternative tiles cost between $0.5 and $5.

If longevity or the specific look of ceramic tile isn't at the top of your list, other options might be better for you. If you have a very specific aesthetic in mind, want something that will outlast your tenure in the home, or just need to fill a tiny space, however, it might be worth the cost!

Share to PinterestA young couple browsing the catalog with a store seller in a bathroom equipment shop


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