Ceramic vs. Porcelain Tile?
Although both tile types are based on clay composition, the similarity ends there.
Porcelain clay is more dense and less porous than ceramic, therefore porcelain tiles are more durable and are a better choice for heavy traffic areas.
If a ceramic tile should chip, you will see a different color under the top glaze, whereas with porcelain, the color remains the same even if a chip occurs, therby making the chip almost invisible.
However, ceramic tiles are cheaper and are easier to cut due to their softer composition which makes it easier for DIY installations. Porcelain is more brittle and requires more experience to cut and install properly.
So, which one should you go with? It all depends upon your budget and the expected wear and use you expect the floor to have. Porcelain is a better choice with it's higher PEI rating (heavier traffic), but ceramic can be satisfactory in certain situations.
Give us a call to discuss your options for a beautiful tile floor!
What about Laminates?
Laminates offer a flooring option that is versatile and that has continued to be improved upon since being introduced. Technology has created ever more realistic designs and textures with finishes and function that work well in many settings. Constructed with a thin top layer of resin infused paper, the image of the wood actually created photographically, this surface layer is backed by a woodchip composite. The hard surface of laminate flooring is scratch and stain resistant. As an alternative to wood flooring it is amazing in appearance to real wood and can be used in rooms with possible "damp" environments such as baths, kitchens and basements.
A "floating floor"- installation is fast and easy with a ready to use new floor surface immediately upon completion. The laminate panels are laid over foam underlayment sheets or the underlayment is sometimes self contained as part of the panels' construction. Moisture barriers are also used where indicated. The panels fit together in tongue and groove style and are not fastened to the sub flooring. The "floating" floor is held in place by moulding or baseboards that are fastened in place around the base of the room's walls. Striking in appearance, these floor look so much like wood that they are often assumed to be wood!
Many laminates have long warranties as much as 20 to 30 years and have proven to be durable and easy to maintain. Note: this type of flooting cannot be sanded or refinished like real wood products.