Two types of materials considered to be elegant and versatile in how they can be used, ceramic and porcelain are two of the most common types of floor tiles in use today. When you first look at these tiles, you may not be able to tell the difference. As a result, you may assume there is little if any difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles. However, the truth is there are crucial differences between the two tiles, making it important you choose the right one for your flooring project. If you want to know which makes the better floor tile, the team here at Oasis Tile will examine each one's pros and cons.
What are the Main Differences Between Ceramic & Porcelain Floor Tiles?
There are three main differences between ceramic and porcelain floor tile. First, porcelain tile keeps the same color throughout. Thus, if a tile breaks or chips, you will still see the same color. Since ceramic tile has a glazed surface, you may see a different color in a part that's chipped.
Second, porcelain floor tile has a smoother finish than ceramic tile. When you look at the underside of a piece of each of these tiles, you'll find porcelain will be very smooth, while ceramic tile will be very coarse.
Finally, if you're concerned about how much your tiles will weigh, ceramic tiles are usually significantly lighter than porcelain tiles, since they are not as dense.
Water Resistant Floor Tiles
Whether you are wanting to use either ceramic or porcelain floor tile in your bathroom, kitchen, or other areas that may be prone to having water on the floor now and then, it's best if you select porcelain floor tile. Ceramic floor tiles are considered to be quite porous, meaning they are more likely to absorb water. On the other hand, porcelain floor tile is almost completely impervious to absorbing water. This makes it especially good for use in bathrooms, even on shower floors.
Comparing Costs For Types of Floor Tiles
When you are comparing the costs of ceramic and porcelain floor tiles, we at Oasis Tile suggest you approach this from a few different angles. First, the actual price you will pay for porcelain tile will be more than that of ceramic tile. If your budget is tight, ceramic tile may be a better option. However, porcelain tile is incredibly strong, making it more durable over the long-term than ceramic tile. Once you install porcelain tile, chances are it will last you for decades, while the ceramic tile may need to be replaced or touched up somewhere along the way. As a result, while you may pay more initially for porcelain tile, you probably won't have to worry about paying for repairs or replacements, which could save you money as well.
DIY or Professional Floor Tile Installation?
If you are planning on having a contractor install your floor tile, it likely won't matter which of these tiles you select, so long as all other factors are equal. However, should you be planning a DIY floor tile installation project, you'll need to think things through more carefully.
Should you choose ceramic tile for your project, this type of floor tile is much easier for DIYers to cut and install. When porcelain tile is used for flooring projects, special tools are needed to cut it, due to it being a very strong material. If you don't know what you're doing with porcelain tile, you could easily mess it up in a hurry, meaning you'll be wasting your money and time. Should you choose porcelain tile, we recommend you hire a professional installer for the job.
Floor Tiles In High-Traffic Areas
In areas of your home that experience a high amount of foot traffic, such as your kitchen, hallways, living room, and den, porcelain tile will work best due to it being a harder and more dense material than ceramic tile. However, ceramic tile may also want to be considered because it is softer and more comfortable to walk on.
If you live in an area that has a very warm climate much of the year, be aware that ceramic tile stays cooler than porcelain tile. This may be beneficial if you like to walk around your home barefoot, if you have small children crawling around on the floor, or if you have pets.
Adding Visual Depth & Dimension With Floor Tiles
Along with giving you a beautiful floor to look at and walk on day after day, choosing the right type of tile can also give a room increased visual depth and dimension. If trying to decide between ceramic and porcelain tile, we give the nod to ceramic tile in this area.
Many types of ceramic tile have a textured surface, which helps provide depth and dimension. In fact, once you start taking a closer look at the many types of ceramic tile available at Oasis Tile, you'll notice many contain waves, ripples, or raised shapes. Depending on what you select, you can create a look on your floor that will resemble no other floor you have ever seen.
Floor Tiles With Various Colors and Patterns
While both ceramic and porcelain tile feature numerous colors and patterns, we think ceramic offers just a bit more variety overall. If you want a customized look that lets you use designs on your floor that are eye-catching, intricate, and come closer to resembling a true work of art, ceramic tile can open up a world of possibilities.
Can Ceramic and Porcelain Floor Tiles be Combined?
It's not uncommon for many people to use a combination of ceramic and porcelain tiles, especially in their bathrooms. If this sounds intriguing to you, you can squeeze by on a tight budget and still have functionality and beauty. To do so, use porcelain tiles for your bathroom's floor, including the shower floor, while using ceramic tile on the walls.
With so many similarities and differences, you've got plenty of decision-making ahead of you when choosing either ceramic or porcelain floor tile. Plus, with our Sample Program, you can try both out completely risk-free! Just add the samples to your cart, and you’ll have them in no time. To find exactly what you want at a price that easily fits into your budget, rely on us at Oasis Tile.