Technology has advanced the way we live and perceive lifestyles. Initially, a well cleaned and dusted floor was comfortable for everyone who couldn’t afford a concrete floor of which with time become a basic necessity on every dwelling. Today, we have better flooring materials depending on one’s ability to choose, buy, install and maintain. Carpets, tiles, stones, and wood are some of the materials that are been used to decorate floors.
Let us look into types of tiles in the Kenyan market and factors to consider while choosing the best. They include;
- Stain-Resistant Porcelain
- Durable Slate-Look Porcelain
- Small Mosaic Tiles
- Vinyl Tile
- Oversized Travertine Tile
- Stone-Like Porcelain
- Natural Stone Tiles
- Slip-Resistant Slate
As you think of installing tiles in your home, consider the following 8 factors;
- Tile Hardness. It measures the material’s ability to withstand wear/foot traffic, as well as scratches.
Class I: No foot traffic. Appropriate for wall-only application.
Class II: Light traffic or interior wall applications. Best in areas with soft-soled to normal foot traffic, with no scratching dirt. For example, bathrooms and bedrooms with no exterior access.
Class III: Light to moderate traffic, as well as countertops and walls. Appropriate for spaces with normal foot traffic and small amounts of scratching dirt. All rooms of the home, except for kitchens, entryways, and other areas with high foot traffic.
Class IV: Moderate to heavy traffic. It can be installed in all areas of the home, including kitchens, halls, entryways.
Class V: Heavy to extra heavy traffic, as well as exposure to scratching dirt. Works well in any room of the house, as well as commercial spaces.
Ratings by porcelain Enamel institute
- Tile Porosity. It is determined by the ratio of air holes to solids in a tile, which impacts the amount of water it absorbs. If you are going to install in a moisture-prone area, such as a bathroom, kitchen, mudroom, laundry room, pay close attention to this rating.
Impervious: water absorption of 0.5 percent or less. Recommended for use in the kitchen and especially the bathroom.
Vitreous: water absorption of 0.5 percent to 3 percent.
Semi Vitreous: water absorption of 3 – 7 percent.
Non-Vitreous: water absorption of more than 7 percent. This category is not recommended for floor use.
- Consider Porcelain Tiles. If you are looking for a material that has strength, moisture resistance, and versatile design, porcelain is the best choice. It is more durable than ceramic and comes in a greater variety of styles, colors, and textures. Not all porcelain products are made equal, and you need to check the specs of each one.
Additionally, if you want the high-end look of wood or stone without breaking the bank, there are marble or wood look porcelain tile products.
- Tiles Slip Resistance. A bathroom is a prime place where fall accidents may happen, particularly the shower area, so good slip resistance is highly recommended. When shopping around for a shower tile floor look for products with a high COF (coefficient of friction).
a) Ceramic or Porcelain: choose a product that has a special textured surface. Inquire about slip-resistant coatings.
b) Slate: this beautiful stone has a naturally slip-resistant texture.
c) Small size tile (glass, mosaic, etc): these have more grout lines, making the overall surface more textured and therefore slip-resistant. Penny tile rounds are another beautiful design that provides ample traction. They typically come in size 2×2 or smaller. As a result, they would be perfect as shower tiles.
d) Pebblestone: has a highly textured surface and boasts a unique visual aesthetic.
- Ceramic wood tile vs real Hardwood. Ceramic wood tile is easier to maintain and also durable, scratch and moisture resistant. These will look stunning as a kitchen floor tile, particularly in more traditional or rustic spaces. Also, it’s ideal as a bathroom or a shower floor tile, where a real hardwood would not be recommended.
- Luxury tiles. If luxury and incredible durability are your top priorities, stone floor tile is second to none. Marble, granite, and travertine can elevate the look of any room in your house. Because no two stones are exactly alike, you get a naturally beautiful floor that will look like no other. Stone tiles need to be sealed and after 5-10 years to maintain the durability and remain resistant to stains. Unsealed stone may remain porous and therefore susceptible to water infiltration.
- Space perceived tiles. If you have a room that is small and or does not have a lot of natural light, you can improve it by installing the light color tile. White, sand, beige, cream, etc are all good choices. Marble or ceramic/porcelain would be a good match for this application. Larger tiles tend to make a small room appear bigger. You can even install the same material on the walls, which will further enhance the illusion of expanded space especially the bathrooms and tiny rooms.
- Concrete Tiles. If you want a very modern, upscale feel in your home, consider concrete tile. It is a highly versatile material that can be used in any room of your house: kitchen, bathroom, living room, etc. Compared to other types of tile, concrete’s biggest advantage is that it can be custom made for your particular application. You can choose the size, color and texture of concrete, request custom cutouts, embeds, special imprinted patterns, as well as three-dimensional sculptural designs. Thus, your design options are virtually endless. this unique custom-made flooring is rather affordable. Installation costs range from Ksh. 600 – 800 per square foot, which is cheaper than natural stone, durable and long-lasting.
With the above information, it’s now clear on which tiles to request Tubsan Engineering Co. to install in your Kitchen, Living room, bedrooms, walls, bathrooms, toilets, verandah, and the corridors.