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Tile

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Types:  There are three types of ceramic tile, glazed, unglazed, and porcelain.

 

Sizes:  Tile comes in a huge variety of sizes ranging from less than an inch to greater than 20 by 20 inches.  Larger tiles can make a small room appear bigger due to fewer grout lines being needed.  Smaller tiles offer additional traction or slip resistance due to the additional grout lines.  

 

Mosaics: Any tile that is less than 2 by 2 inches are usually referred to as mosaics.  These types of tiles are usually grouped together in different colors and styles to create patterns and are generally used as accent pieces in a tile layout.  Additionally, accent pieces or decos, liners, chair rails, and other decorative pieces can help to create unique, personalized, one of a kind patterns for  your tile area. Trim tile finishes off your tile layout and completes your installation by finishing off the corners and edges.  They can either be the same as the field, or main tile or of a complementary color.

 

Colors:  Color, shade, and texture variation is something that should be considered when selecting a ceramic tile.  Solid color tiles provide a consistent look.  Shade variations are going to be present in any ceramic tile.  Shade variation varies depending on the style of tile in question.  Some tiles are designed to have a greater shade variation than other styles.  The amount of shade variation in a particular type of tile will be listed on the display boards as either low, meduim, high, or random.  Tiles that are intended to look like stone will intentionally show variation in the different tiles.  

 

Grout: Grout should be chosen based on the usage that the particular area will be getting.  Grout is porous, and will darken over time, especially in areas of high water use.  Grout color will vary from the sample based on moisture levels where the tile was installed, as well as the temperature.

 

Slip Resistance: The COF, or coefficient of friction rating will tell you the relative slip resistance of a particular tile.  The higher the rating, the more slip resistant the tile is.  This is particularly important in places where there is a possibility of moisture on the floor, such as a bathroom or kitchen floor.

 

Upgrading: Upgrading your tile offers many benefits, including access to the higher performance tiles.  You will also find a wider selection of styles, sizes, colors, textures, and finishes to choose from.  Upgrading will also usually offer a greater selection of design options, such as borders, patterns, decos, clipped corner tiles, and mosaics.

 

Care and Maintenance: Sand and dirt can damage a tiles surface over time.  Rugs placed at entrances will  help keep dirt from being tracked in.  Sweep or vaccuum your tile areas twice a week.  Clean tile weekly with a damp sponge mop with a solution of ¼ cup white vinegar to two gallons of water, or use a cleaner specifically made for cleaning tile.  Avoid using steel wool pads as loose steel pieces can cause rust stains in the grout.  Acid or amonia based chemicals can alter grout color.

Care and Maintenance