Table of contents
In many homes, floor tiles have become the flooring of choice. From ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles to tiles resembling hardwood flooring and more, there are as many possibilities with floor tiles as you can imagine. If you are preparing to do a home renovation on a grand scale, looking to replace carpet flooring with tile, or just want to change the look of one or two rooms, floor tile is a great option. Here at Oasis Tile, our team wants to help you make the best choices regarding floor tile. To accomplish this, we've gathered together the most important information you'll need to know, such as the pros and cons of certain tiles, how tile is installed, various design ideas for different rooms of your home, and of course tips on buying the best floor tile for your needs.
What are the Benefits of Floor Tile?
When you choose various types of floor tile to use in your home, you are making a smart decision for many reasons. First, you'll be able to select many different styles that fit your design needs as well as your practical needs. Also, most floor tiles are relatively inexpensive, making them easy to fit into your project budget.
Many tiles, especially ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles, are easy to install, meaning you can make your tile installation a DIY project if you wish. As such types of tile as mosaic tile have increased in popularity in recent years, these and other types of tiles are being used in bathrooms, kitchens, family areas, and virtually anywhere else in a home.
Additional benefits of floor tiles include they are very easy to clean, extremely resistant to water damage, are made to be slip-resistant, and many others! As a result, whether you want to use floor tile on your bathroom floor, inside a shower, in your kitchen or an entryway, there will be very little chance of anyone slipping and sliding on the tile. Finally, most floor tiles are very durable, even in high foot-traffic areas. In fact, porcelain tile and ceramic tile can look virtually like new decades after they have been installed.
What are the Different Types of Floor Tile?
As we mentioned earlier, there are numerous types of floor tiles that will work well for any type of renovation project. For most of our customers here at Oasis Tile, porcelain tile and ceramic tile are the most popular choices, in part due to their versatility and affordable pricing.
Other types of floor tile include glass tile, mosaic tile, marble tile, granite tile, natural stone tile, and floor tile that looks and feels so much like hardwood flooring that it is almost impossible to tell the difference once it is installed.
Even as design trends come and go, floor tile continues to remain popular. Glass tile is a great choice in bathrooms, since it is water and slip-resistant, reflects light, and can make a room appear bigger. However, it can be expensive, so you'll need a big budget for your project. Mosaic tile is also extremely popular due to its unique appearance and versatility, allowing it to be used in the creation of wonderful works of art on a room's floor.
What is the Difference Between Floor Tile and Wall Tile?
When you are looking at different types of tiles and notice there is floor tile and wall tile, your initial reaction is that they all look the same. However, looks can be deceiving. As a rule, we at Oasis Tile tell our customers there are many key differences between floor tile and wall tile.
The most important difference between these two types of tile is that wall tile is much thinner than floor tile, meaning it won't stand up well to being walked on over and over. In fact, wall tile used on a floor is very likely to develop cracks.
If you feel pieces of floor tile and wall tile, you will notice the difference in thickness, as well as the floor tile having an added texture. Tiles are also given ratings for their thickness and texture, which is something you should pay close attention to when buying tiles. A rating of 0 means a tile can only be used on walls, whereas a tile rated 5 is very durable, thick, and made to be used on floors where a high foot-traffic presence is expected.
How is Floor Tile Installed?
When floor tile of any type is being installed, the rule for homeowners doing a DIY project as well as for experienced contractors is to measure twice, cut once. Since porcelain, ceramic, and other types of tiles will need to be cut to size, the last thing you want to do is cut your tile too small.
Underneath the tile, a substrate underlayment of cement board or backer board is often used to ensure the floor's surface is as flat as possible. If you don't follow this step and simply lay porcelain tiles or ceramic tiles on a floor that is not completely flat everywhere, it won't be long until tile after tile is cracking.
When you are ready to lay your first tile, remember to start in the center of the room and work your way towards the walls. Prior to putting down your first tile, measure each wall in the room to find the room's midpoint, then mark this on the floor as the spot where you will begin.
If you are not the best person at doing DIY projects, it is best to leave your floor tile job to a professional contractor. Even in the simplest of rooms, it can be easy for beginners to make mistakes that cost them time and money. On average, hiring a professional installer may add up to $10 extra per square foot, with a typical 150 square-foot room costing anywhere from $1,000-$2,000.
What Size Floor Tile Should be Used?
When customers or contractors are choosing the best size of floor tile for a project, we always recommend they do so by considering the size of the area to be tiled.
For example, if you are looking to use the best tiles for your bathroom, you could opt for very small mosaic tiles if you wish. Measuring one-inch square, this will be a time-consuming job, yet will give the bathroom a unique look all its own.
For many rooms, be it a bathroom, kitchen, living room, or bedroom, the most common size of floor tile used for these projects is 12-inch square. In some rooms that may be bigger, which is often the case with living rooms, some people prefer to use 18-inch square floor tile. Of course, keep in mind that the larger the tile, the higher the price in most cases, so prepare your budget accordingly.
Water and Floor Tiles
In almost any room where floor tiles are installed, they will sooner or later get wet. When choosing floor tiles for your project, always consider just how wet the tiles are likely to get during a typical day.
If you are putting down floor tile in your bathroom, it is always best to get floor tiles that are very resistant to water, and are also slip-resistant. In this situation, porcelain and ceramic tiles work best. Though they both look and feel similar, porcelain tiles are less porous, meaning they absorb practically no water. Ceramic tiles, though very good, do have very small holes within their surface that can absorb small amounts of water over time.
As for floor tiles that are 100% water-resistant, look to WPC vinyl tile and vinyl plank flooring. Excellent to use in bathrooms and kitchens, this tile also works very well in laundry rooms and basements. However, keep in mind that most types of glass, mosaic, and natural stone tiles are also very resistant to water, giving you many choices for your project.
When a tile floor does sustain water damage, it usually is not the floor tiles themselves that are damaged. Instead, it is the grout between the tiles, as well as the adhesive used to bond the tile to the floor. Should you see tiles that are loose, you should pull them up to assess the damage underneath. If damage has occurred to the subflooring, you'll have no choice but to take up the floor and have it redone.
Floor Tiles and Different Rooms
Just as you've got different rooms in your home, there are different floor tiles that work best in certain rooms.
If you are looking for kitchen floor tile ideas, start with picking the right tile type: ceramic or porcelain work the best. Available in many colors and designs, these tiles are durable, resistant to stains and moisture, and hold up very well under high foot-traffic.
Bedrooms are often great places to use glass or marble tile, since both of these floor tiles provide a touch of elegance and style. If you're on a budget, consider mosaic tiles, porcelain tiles, or ceramic tiles, which are versatile enough to give a bedroom a great new look.
For bathroom tiles, small porcelain or ceramic tiles are among the most popular bathroom design trends. Since moisture and slip-resistance will be a top priority, small tiles that result in more grout being used will actually increase traction on the flooring. Colorful floor tiles are another great addition to any bathroom. Whether you’re adding an accent or creating a colorful theme, exploring different bathroom tile colors and choosing the one that best suits your style will guarantee you create the bathroom of your dreams!
Other areas of a home where floor tile is a great addition include the basement, laundry room, entryway, and even the wine cellar. For most of these spots, porcelain or ceramic tiles work best due to their slip and moisture resistance. When choosing floor tile for a wine cellar or entryway, consider using porcelain floor tiles that have a stone-like look to them, since this will blend in well with the existing decor.
Floor Tile Design Ideas
When the priority is to add style, flair, and uniqueness to a room, floor tile can't be beat. In 2022, our Oasis Tile team has noticed a trend in seeing more customers wanting large-format tiles. Popular because they have fewer grout lines, they offer a smooth appearance to a floor.
Classic Floor Tiles
Of course, porcelain floor tiles and ceramic floor tiles never go out of style, and for good reason. Now available in so many different colors, textures, and designs, these tiles are versatile and durable enough to be used in virtually any room in a home. Whether you choose a glossy, porcelain tile or opt for a matte finish tile, there’s plenty of options available. Cost-effective, easy to clean and maintain, and easy to install, these floor tiles are hard to beat.
Stone Tiles & Natural Wood
Stone flooring, whether it is actual natural stone or porcelain or ceramic tile with a stone look, gives a great rustic look and feel to any home. Giving warm tones to rooms, stone tiles are relatively affordable and give a home a lived-in look. Another similar type of tile that’s very popular is vitrified floor tiles that come with many benefits and offer a unique take with natural stone. There are even wood-like tiles that are made of ceramic or porcelain, but offer the aesthetic benefits of wood! This allows homeowners to get the wood floors they want without the cost.
If unique designs are your top priority with floor tile, mosaic tile will catch your eye right away. Available in all types of sizes, colors, and designs, this floor tile can be great if you want to use your creativity within a room. One of the hottest trends in floor tile, mosaic tile looks even better when bold colors are combined with lighter ones on walls, since this creates a stark contrast that makes a bathroom, entryway, or even a bedroom look stunning.
How to Buy Floor Tiles
Since you want everything to be perfect once your project is finished, there are certain things to remember when buying floor tiles.
Step One: Know Your Budget
First, know how much you can spend on floor tile. Porcelain floor tiles and ceramic floor tiles are very affordable, come in many different looks, and can be used almost anywhere.
Step Two: Choose From A Wide Selection
Next, it is best to buy tile from a place that has a wide selection of floor tile, a knowledgeable staff, and a commitment to excellent customer service, each of which applies to us here at Oasis Tile.
As for how much you can expect to spend, high-quality porcelain floor tiles and ceramic floor tiles average $4-$10 per square foot, which is actually very affordable for almost any budget.