Tips for Choosing Floor Tile

When it comes to home renovations, aside from painting, there is probably no other item with more impact than your choice of flooring materials. Though hardwood floors are certainly beautiful, they rarely can stand up to the abuse seen in areas such as entryways and bathrooms. For these areas in particular, nothing can match the durability of a tile floor. This article focuses on what to look for when selecting tile as a flooring material for your home.

Tile comes in a wide array of options. A good starting point when selecting the proper tile will be the consideration of color. If you have a color in mind, go out and explore what options are available in that particular color. For example, if you chose that you want white tile, you will have several options. If you want it to be pure white, you will have to choose between a ceramic or porcelain tile. These products are man made and can be finished in pure white. If you are willing to accept an off white, or a white with some color variations, then you can also consider natural products such as marble, granite, quartz and so on. A good starting point when selecting color is to determine if you want a solid color with no variation, or a color that has variation across the surface of the tile.

Once your color choice has been made, you will quickly see that you have narrowed the options down considerably. If you want a solid color, you will only have to choose between porcelain and ceramic tile with porcelain tile being the more durable choice. If you want a variable color pattern, you will be able to choose from a wide variety of man made and natural tiles.

The next consideration that should be made is the size of tile that you are looking for. For large areas, you should select a large tile. Something that is 12 inches by 12 inches would be a good starting size if you are installing tile in a living room, bedroom, or kitchen. However, if you are installing tile in a bathroom or entryway, you should consider a tile that is about 8 inches by 8 inches or less in size. You may choose any size tile, but the above recommendations are usually followed, and give a better overall appearance to the room.

Now that you have the color selected, and the size selected, you will have to determine the usage of the area where the tile will be installed. Tiles are rated based on their durability. They are rated from 1 to 5. With 1 being the least durable and only recommend for very light foot traffic, to 5 being the most durable and recommended for heavy commercial use. I recommend buying a tile that is rated no less than 3 and preferably finding one that is rated 4 or 5. These higher rated tiles will last longer, look better for years to come, and help you avoid having to replace them in the near future.

With color chosen, size chosen, and a grade of tile chosen, you are ready to head off to your home improvement store to select your tile. Tile prices can vary greatly, but if you are only tiling a bathroom or small entryway, the price difference will not be significant between the lowest priced tiles and more moderately price tiles. You must factor in the cost of other installation materials and you will quickly see that the tile price alone should not be a deciding factor.

Ask the store clerk for help in selecting the perfect tile. Tell him or her what color you are looking for, what size you would like, and what wear rating you need and they should be able to show you all of the tiles that suit your specifications. Choose the tile that is to your liking as well as the other materials that are needed for the job and install your new floor.

Options at home supply stores seem endless. But with a few preset requirements and knowledge of the product that you are looking for, the difficulty in making an educated choice is eliminated and the process of selection is much easier.

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