Porcelain, Ceramic & Glass
Porcelain, Ceramic and Glass Tile
The combination of elements, such as: glass blended with ceramic or porcelain tiles, can help to create a very individualized look.
A common question: Porcelain vs. Ceramic?
We get asked this question a lot! We also have customers requesting porcelain on behalf of an installer, or because they’ve been told it’s a better product. Here is a very brief overview:
- Both porcelain and ceramic tiles are manufactured products, made from various clays and minerals.
- Porcelain is a denser, more impervious product than ceramic, and is fired at a higher temperature. In order to be classified as porcelain, per international standards, it must have a water absorption rate of 0.5% or less. It is this important factor that allows porcelain to be suitable for exterior applications, provided the installation is done correctly, and with the appropriate materials.
- If a porcelain tile gets chipped, you will most likely see a different color underneath, unless you have an unglazed porcelain, or a through-body porcelain, where the clay color closely resembles the surface color of the tile. The majority of porcelain tiles that we carry are glazed; this is what gives the tile its unique surface decoration, and/or color. The glaze can be a gloss, satin, or even a matte finish. The benefit of any tile, regardless of whether it’s porcelain or ceramic, is that it can be replaced if it does get chipped, provided you have some leftover tiles- ALWAYS save your extras!
- There is more technical data out there than any homeowner should ever have to know regarding tiles and tile materials. We can provide our customers with various ratings on tiles, including the PEI (Porcelain Enamel Institute) rating, which is a wear rating, and MOH’s Scale for scratch hardness. We advise our customers to choose the tile they love; don’t choose it just because it’s porcelain, unless you’re in a commercial setting where porcelain tile is specified for that particular application. Also note that there are some ceramic tiles which are rated for commercial use as well.
- We want customers to know that these various ratings don’t necessarily determine the price, quality, or appearance of the tile, only the durability. Some of the most beautiful and/or expensive tiles in the world can have lower ratings than their porcelain counterparts. A quality installation can provide you with many years of enjoyment, regardless of whether you choose porcelain or ceramic tiles.
View a sample of our Porcelain & Ceramic Products or view a sample of All Products