Whether you re improving a bathroom vanity , refurbishing a kitchen counter, or installing a new floor , there are many things to consider beyond tile s physical attributes when choosing the right tile for your project. Some of these practical issues are pretty obvious :Is the tile good looking , affordable , durable? Other factors are less apparent : Is the tile too slippery for the chosen location? Does the tile show dirt readily available ? Overlooking any of these concerns can , at best , make your tile project more frustrating . At worst , you might end up with tile that doe not match your needs and lifestyle.
Who wants to go to all the expense and trouble of installation tile that ends up looking worn and damaged in year or two? Try to match the durability characteristics of tile with the demands of the surface it s used on. For example , it s foolish to install tile with low wear resistance , like a standard ceramic or a soft stone like marble , In a high use kitchen where heavy pots and pans are used often. In this situation , durable porcelain or hard granite tile is a much better choice . But that does not mean that softer tiles are not good choice for other installations, including bathrooms floors, tub enclosures, and vanity tops.
As beautiful as tile , it is , it is not the safest choice for every application. Avoid using tiles with a high-gloss glaze or high-polished surface on floors. To prevent people from slipping in entryways , bathrooms , kitchens, and other areas likely to get wet, choose tile with a matte finish or a textured surface. Tiles are rated for their slip resistance, under both wet and dry conditions. If you are concerned about family members or guests (especially children and elderly) slipping and falling, be sure to check these ratings at your dealer before buying floor tiles .
if you are saving money by buying bargain close out or discontinued tile, make sure to buy enough not only for the job but also for any future tile expansion or repairs . Do not get caught short!
Light colored tiles tend to show every bit of dirt or coffee drips.
If cleaning tile is not your idea of a good time , there are some tile and grout choices that you should avoid . While it s generally durable , stone tile requires more upkeep than other kind of tile, including periodic resealing. On the plus side , the patterns and shade variations of natural and faux stone tiles tend to hide dirt and pet fur. Likewise, you will spend more time cleaning porous stain-prone tiles, such as marble and limestone, making them a bad choice for kitchen counters where food and liquids are spilled on a daily basis .
Color choice also affects how often tile needs cleaning. White ceramic and light marble tiles look terrific when they are new : but unless they are kept spotlessly clean, they will show every bit of grime . Earth tone or medium gray tiles are much easier to live with and a much better candidate for high-use surfaces, like counter and floors . Shiny, dark-colored tiles tend to show water spots , making them poor choice for a kitchen backsplash or shower enclosure. Grout color has an impact on tile maintenance as well. White grout used on tiled kitchen or bar countertops quickly show stains as readily, and help conceal dirt that accumulates in the wide grout joints of a tiled floor.