Ceramic, Porcelain, Stone or Mosaic Tiles – A Handy Guide
Next to the bedroom the bathroom is probably our favourite place for relaxing in.
Our bathrooms, and particularly the bath, are places of sanctuary for many of us – whether we love to spend hours reading in the bath, or just like to lock ourselves in there to get away from the rest of the family for a bit.
So it’s important that our bathroom doesn’t just appeal to our senses (ie that it looks tranquil), but that it’s also comfortable and somewhere we actually enjoy spending time in.
Probably the biggest aesthetic jolt for any bathroom is its tiling – not just what they look like but also how the tiles feel and the size of them. Each of these qualities will affect how we both see and feel about our bathrooms.
Tiles are, of course, available in hundreds of different shades and patterns. But they also come in different materials and textures which can affect where they are laid and in what way.
So What Are The Different Types Of Tiles?
Well some of the tiles we’re familiar with fitting at Tommy Welsh installations include:
Ceramic – The most common type of tile within the bathroom is ceramic and there is a good reason for it. With Ceramic tiles there’s a massive amount of choice in both colours and textures and you will never be stuck for ideas.
The finishes come in two forms, glazed and unglazed. Ceramic tiles are made from clay and then heated, a glaze is added later which gives the tile it’s colour. This method allows for a massive choice of colours. Ceramic tiles are easy to clean, hard wearing and low maintenance making them the perfect choice for your new bathroom
Porcelain –Another great choice is porcelain. It’s stain resistant and hard wearing and because it’s fired at higher temperatures to ceramic it makes it more dense. It’s also less porous than ceramic which means it’s perfect for both inside and outside your home.
The big downfall though is because it’s so tough its a big no no for a DIY installation and definitely a job for the professional installer’s (which is where we come in) Available in matt and both glazed and unglazed and a great range of colours. Read more about porcelain bathroom tiles here.
Stone – If it’s luxury your after then this might be the perfect choice. There’s a good choice when it comes to natural stone from, travertine, marble, granite, slate onyx, limestone and sandstone. They are extremely durable and there’s plenty of textures to choose from.
The downside is they can be expensive and, when you least want it (ie winter) cold on your feet. Steam can also cause mildew problems in certain types of soft stone such as slate or limestone.
Mosaic – For those who like their bathroom’s colourful and patterned, this is the option to go for. They can be extremely cheering and decorative but tend to be a bit on the pricey side.
In terms of patterns the mosaic tiles allow you to be as creative as you like so there perfect for for borders, feature walls and focal points and you can also use them as inserts to break break up an otherwise plain wall of tiles.
If you are considering mosaics It’s actually a good idea to draw the pattern you’d like your tiles to resemble beforehand so you can iron out any bad ideas prior to sticking any tiles on your wall!
Mosaics come in rectangles, squares, hexagons and loads of other unique shapes and in a variety of finishes.
Important – Always Get A Good Bathroom Installer!
The tiles are probably the most important thing to the overall finish to your bathroom, it where your bathroom will either look stunning or in need of a bit of love so It’s crucial that you get a good tiler to install your new tiles.
We’ve tackled all types of tiling as part of complete bathroom refits and would always recommend you get your tiling done by an expert ( the tiles themselves are very costly so it’s just too expensive to mess up).
You want to ensure all the levelling is correct and that the tiles are appropriate for where you want them to go (for instance some stone tiles definitely shouldn’t be used near a shower as water will actually erode them in time).
When putting in tiles we will always use an underlay to give the tiles a surface to stick on and level the floor out.
Think of where you’re putting the tiles. For instance ceramic isn’t good for a shower floor as it doesn’t grip well. Neither is porcelain. There’s lots of other questions like this that it’s important to get answers to before you go out and buy your tiles.
We’re more than happy here at Tommy Welsh Installations to have a chat with you and provide advice on any aspect of bathroom installation.