Tile Types

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Ceramic tile is made from clay, which is baked at very high temperatures, resulting in an attractive and very hard surface. Ceramic tile is very low maintenance, particularly in terms of keeping the surface clean. Ceramic tile retains virtually no dirt and can be kept clean with water and a damp cloth or mop. Ceramic tile is also naturally fire resistant and can actually help to maintain a structure in the event of a fire, making it popular choice of flooring material by the safety conscious. To help you select your ceramic tile there are some terms you should know before going shopping.


Glazed ceramic tile has a facial surface coating made from glass derivative, a hard, non-porous, impermeable surface after firing. Color dyes are blended to achieve the desired glaze color. The glaze is then applied to the top surface of the unfired tile and then fused to the tile’s surface during the firing process. Glazed does not absorb moisture, highly stain, scratch and fade resistant, hygienic, and easy to clean throughout the body of the tile. These tiles will stand very heavy foot traffic in all types of exterior and interior applications

Wall Tile

Wall tile is normally less durable than tile designed specifically for flooring. Most wall tile is glazed with a high-gloss or semi-gloss surface. This glazed, glossy surface has a very low slip resistance, and is very slick when wet. Therefore, glazed wall tile is much more suited to vertical or countertop applications rather than floors.

Floor Tile

Floor tiles are made more durable to withstand normal foot traffic. These tiles also have a more textured and/or matte surface, as compared to wall tile, to improve slip resistance and enhance the overall appearance of the floor.

Wall/Floor Combinations

Many tiles are manufactured for use on both floors and walls. These tiles allow coordinating the floor and wall tile within a room to achieve a very attractive and consistent look.

Porcelain Tile

Porcelain tiles made from a fine-grain clay body. A color pigment is mixed with the clay body powder prior to pressing and firing, giving the finished tiles a consistent color throughout the tile. Porcelain tile is very dense and impermeable, which makes it highly resistant to moisture, staining, and wear. Because of these features, porcelain tile will withstand years of heavy foot traffic while maintaining its color and beauty.

Mosaic Tile

Mosaic tiles are small tiles-generally 2” by 2”or smaller-and always less than six square inches in area. Mosaic tiles are most often mounted on paper, mesh, or adhesive dot mounted sheets to facilitate easier handling and installation.