Everything You Need to Know About Wood-Like Tiles


Everything You Need to Know About Wood-Like Tiles

Wood-look tiles are very versatile. It comes in a variety of patterns, styles and wood grain textures. Imagine, having the beauty of hardwood in a more convenient form. Wood-look tiles bring the aesthetics of wood, the versatility and durability of tile.

Wood-look tile hit the market over 10 years back and has just been expanding in fame since. Genuine wood floors are so warm and inviting, however, it can’t deal with stickiness, water, pets, and children like tile can. In this way, when wood-look tile was first made, it was the best of both worlds!

Buying Considerations

Plank size

Small Planks

This is the ideal size when space is minimal. It is recommended in small bathrooms and cloakrooms. The size is up to 60cm long per plank.

Medium Planks

Plank of this size makes an area look larger. It is recommended for extensions and areas that are large enough to see the beauty of the planks. The size is up to 90cm long.

Large Planks

This size is recommended for large areas such as the living room, receiving area, drawing room, or any part of the house that is large and wide. Due to the length of these planks, grout joints are at a minimum. Since fewer grout joints are visible, it makes the tiles look continuous and more realistic.

Tile grade

Durability

Tile is one of the most durable materials that you can buy. Its strength can attest to the length of time it can serve the purpose. Aside from that, it is a lot easier to maintain than hardwood.

Maintenance

Tiles are relatively very easy to maintain. Cleaning products and tools are cheap and very basic.

Versatility

Wood-like tiles can go anywhere in the house. Its properties are versatile and can go from indoor to outdoor purposes. Tiles are impervious to moisture and are abrasion resistant making it durable enough in high traffic situations.

Cons of Wood-like Tiles

Expert Installation

Wood-like tile is a little tricky to install. It requires a trained eye to spot hairline cracks and uneven subfloor. Staging the patterns, blending the tones and spacing the grout lines consistently is another consideration. It is necessary to achieve a realistic and appealing design.

Comfort

Tiles don’t give comfortable underfoot like other types of flooring. It is cold to step on and can be quite hard on the knees and heel.

Slip Resistance

Tiles have better value for money, especially for budgeted projects. Tiles are cheaper than wood. Also, modern technology can deliver closer to reality aesthetics than ever before.

Tile ratings enable you to decide whether the tile is reasonable for the application where you intend. Entryways require a hard, abrasion-resistant, moisture-proof tile. Showers require a moisture-proof, non-slip material. A few tiles are evaluated for indoor or outside purposes; only a few can be utilized as a part of either application.

Some types of tile are harder than others. Mohs scale evaluates a tile’s relative hardness or its ability to stand up to wear and the percentage of water absorbed.

Class I – No foot traffic. These tiles are for wall-only applications.

Class II – Light traffic. Interior residential and commercial wall applications. These are for areas where little abrasion occurs, such as bathrooms.

Class III – Light to moderate traffic. Use these in residential settings with normal foot traffic. They are also ideal for countertops and walls.

Class IV – Moderate to heavy traffic. These tiles are acceptable for all home use in addition to medium commercial or light institutional use.

Class V – Heavy to extra heavy traffic. Approved tile for all residential applications, heavy commercial work and institutional foot traffic.

Porosity

Porosity is the ratio of holes to solids in a tile. This influences the percent moisture absorbed in a tile.  A tile’s porosity is important for kitchen and shower applications since these regions require moisture proof floors. Porous tiles shouldn’t be utilized outside where freeze-thaw cycles occur.

Minimally absorbent or Impervious

A material that is minimally absorbent means that it is virtually non-porous. It doesn’t require any sealer, easier to maintain, and less likely to stain.

Moderately absorbent or Vitreous

This material has low to moderate absorption rate which is the standard absorption rate for flooring materials. Oil and highly pigmented liquids can stain the stone that’s why it is best to always seal this material prior to use.

Highly absorbent or Non-Vitreous

This material has medium to high absorption rate. Usually, it is not recommended to for use in damp environment. Sealing is highly recommended for this material.

Firing

The firing process influences the hardness of tile. Longer and hotter firing results in a harder tile. For single-fired tiles, a glaze is applied and heated once in a furnace. Double-fired tiles are thicker and baked for the second time after color is added.

Pros of Wood-Like Tiles

Pros of Wood-like Tiles

Value

Tiles have better value for money, especially for budgeted projects. Tiles are cheaper than wood. Also, modern technology can deliver closer to reality aesthetics than ever before.

Durability

Tiles are relatively smooth unless you choose to have a textured finish. However, in this type of material, traction is really poor. This makes tile a safety hazard especially when wet. It is safe to opt for non-slip varieties.

Maintenance

Tiles are relatively very easy to maintain. Cleaning products and tools are cheap and very basic.

Versatility

Wood-like tiles can go anywhere in the house. Its properties are versatile and can go from indoor to outdoor purposes. Tiles are impervious to moisture and are abrasion resistant making it durable enough in high traffic situations.

Cons of Wood-like Tiles

Expert Installation

Wood-like tile is a little tricky to install. It requires a trained eye to spot hairline cracks and uneven subfloor. Staging the patterns, blending the tones and spacing the grout lines consistently is another consideration. It is necessary to achieve a realistic and appealing design.

Comfort

Tiles don’t give comfortable underfoot like other types of flooring. It is cold to step on and can be quite hard on the knees and heel.

Slip Resistance

Tiles are relatively smooth unless you choose to have a textured finish. However, in this type of material, traction is really poor. This makes tile a safety hazard especially when wet. It is safe to opt for non-slip varieties.

Types of Wood-Like Tiles

Porcelain

Porcelain tiles are fired at a high temperature, making a dense, durable tile that’s resistant to moisture.

Pros

  1. Breakage Rating

Porcelain tiles can have high breakage ratings. It can withstand around 3,190 psi amount of force.

  1. Firing temperatures

Porcelain is made of white or red clay and is fired for up to 1,240 degrees Celsius.

  1. Water absorption

Porcelain has a very low water absorption ranging from 0.5% to .1%. A low water absorption rating is favorable because it will not be prone to staining, and can withstand freeze-thaw cycles.

Cons

  1. More technical installation

Unlike ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles due to its different properties require a more professional installation procedure. Also, it needs a special setting compound to anchor it properly on a substrate.

  1. Price

This type of material ranges from $3 to $6 per square foot.

Types of Porcelain tiles

Ceramic Tiles

Ceramic has been used in the ancient civilization due to its durability.  It is made from clay and hardened by firing at high temperatures. Ceramics are usually coated by glaze to protect its surface.

Pros

  1. Water resistance

The glazing on a ceramic tile makes it impervious to water and stain. Another added function is protection from high humidity. This makes ceramic very ideal for bathrooms and kitchens.

  1. Durability

A good installation of ceramic tiles will last up to 20 years if well maintained. Ceramic flooring is really tough and hard to crack.

  1. Maintenance

Thanks to the glazing of ceramic tiles, dirt, stains and liquids just rest on the surface. Spills will be cleaned easily without necessary tools and solutions.

Cons

  1. Hard flooring

This characteristic of ceramic flooring makes it uncomfortable for the knees and heels. It doesn’t provide a soft underfoot.

  1. Costly installation

Ceramic tiles are quite heavy and installations are very technical. Professional help is often needed to properly install ceramic tiles using appropriate tools. Since it is labor intensive, installations will be costly.

  1. Tile weight

Ceramic tiles are heavy and this means that it might not be suitable for upper flooring applications. Professional help is needed to check the integrity of the foundations before installing ceramic tiles on upper floors.

  1. Price

Costs may range from $3 to $7 per square foot.

Overall, wood-like tiles are the best option you can take instead of having hardwood floors installed. It gives the versatility, durability, and convenience of tiles with the beauty of hardwood. Both Porcelain and Ceramics have their points. Porcelain is best for household purposes as it is easy to manage and uncomplicated. Ceramics requires the expertise of professionals to ensure proper sealing and installation. Price considerations for ceramic and porcelain does not vary widely. However, ceramics will be more labor intensive and thus, more costly.

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