Tile and Stone Flooring Guide
As you put together the pieces while planning your home's future remodel, flooring should absolutely take center stage. After all, it is a key and necessary part of any room, and what you choose to place on the floors can set the tone for the rest of the space. In many cases, the best material for the job will be either tile or stone. Both can be a beautiful flooring choice, but there are plenty of considerations before you make your pick. Learn more about the pros and cons of tile and stone flooring, what specific varieties are available and where in the home tile and stone floors are most popular.
Pros and Cons of Tile Flooring
One of the biggest reasons to choose tile flooring in your home's remodel is because tile can be a very affordable option. Of course, there is a wide range of tile quality, but generally ceramic and porcelain tile are inexpensive, making them popular for anyone on a budget.
Tile is also typically waterproof and easy to clean, limiting maintenance and ensuring that it works in wet and humid environments. Plus, glazed tiles won't need to be sealed, which means that maintenance beyond basic cleaning is not necessary.
Durable and long-lasting, tile is a solid choice. However, tile can be hard to stand on for long periods of time, just like stone flooring. Tile may also be too cold during the winter, necessitating carpets or rugs.
Pros and Cons of Stone Flooring
In warm climates, stone is often a top choice for homeowners because it stays cool underfoot, particularly when the air conditioning is on, and helps residents to feel refreshed and relaxed while at home.
Regardless of climate, stone flooring won't host allergens, making it a smart choice for anyone with respiratory problems such as asthma or constant allergies.
Most stone floors are also very hard and very durable, ensuring that damage is very unlikely and replacement not something you'll need to think about for years and even decades to come. Perhaps best of all is the fact that natural stone flooring looks beautiful and upscale.
With all the advantages that stone flooring can bring, it is important to fairly discuss the drawbacks. Stone flooring is typically expensive, often coming in at equal to or even more than hardwood flooring.
Since stone is so hard, it may be uncomfortable to stand on for long periods of time, and dropped items may end up shattering upon contact with the floor. Stone flooring can be scratched over time if not cleaned properly, marring the aesthetic appeal.
Finally, some types of stone flooring are porous, meaning that they don't fare well in wet or humid rooms or anywhere that spills are common.
Types of Stone Flooring Available
If you decide to remodel your home's flooring and you choose natural stone for all or part of the project, there are five major options you'll likely pick from. These five include granite, limestone, slate, travertine and limestone.
Granite - By far the most popular natural stone flooring choice, and it comes in many colors, sizes and shapes. It can also be sold with a textured surface, which works beautifully in bathrooms.
Limestone - Slightly porous, making it less suitable for bathrooms. However, limestone can be sanded down for a smooth finish or left tumbled for a rustic look.
Marble - An upscale stone material that is readily available, but it can scratch easily. Marble comes in many color variations and hardness levels, so you can find something suitable for your space and your remodeling budget.
Slate - Often used outdoors, it can transition nicely indoors. Typically available in gray, red and green, slate often comes in unusual and asymmetrical shapes rather than identical pieces.
Travertine - A type of limestone, but it actually more closely resembles marble and comes at a fraction of the price.
Types of Tile Flooring Available
Tile, in the most basic sense of the word, is a thin slab of baked material like clay or concrete. In reality, however, it can mean a thin piece of virtually any material used for flooring.
Wood, for example, comes in planks, but it is also available in thin wooden tiles for a fraction of the cost. Unusual tiles might also include terazzo or any of the natural stones listed above.
When most people talk about flooring tile, however, they are referring specifically to ceramic tile. Ceramic tiles are baked at extremely high temperatures and then glazed, and they come in virtually every size, shape and design you can imagine.
You can find tiles in square or rectangular shapes, every color under the sun and in unusual patterns designed to capture attention.
Choosing Where to Install Tile and Stone Floors
If you're thinking about using tile or stone flooring as part of your home remodel, there is a good chance that you are focusing especially on the bathroom.
Since tile is water resistant and most stone materials can be sealed to prevent water damage, they work well in humid and steamy environments where wet feet are a daily occurrence.
Just keep in mind that any grout used should also withstand wetness and be durable as well as easy to clean.
Tile and stone also look good in the kitchen, and it will also make maintaining a clean and hygienic space easier. However, those who love to cook may want to remember that hard surfaces can be uncomfortable to stand on while baking up a storm for hours.
If you have a pool or live near a beach, then smooth or textured tile or stone floors in common areas may make sense as they can dry easily as well as have sand swept up quickly.
Including tile or stone as flooring for your home's remodel can be a smart idea and one that boosts the practicality and visual appeal of your new space.