All ceramic tiles are made up of clay and quartz ferrous
sand materials, along with water. Once the tiles are formed they are fired to
high temperatures and in some cases their surfaces are glazed. The only
difference between Porcelain tile and regular ceramic tile is that the clay used
in porcelain tile is more highly refined and purified. Consequently, porcelain
tiles are denser than a standard ceramic tile.
|As a result, porcelain tiles are more rugged making them
ideal for harsher applications such as flooring. Also, because of their
higher density, porcelain tiles are less likely to absorb moisture (0.5%)
which makes them more durable and more resistant to staining. Porcelain
tiles are frequently found in floor applications, outdoor areas, and in cold
weather climates where freezing can occur. With their low absorption
capability they are less likely to crack in cold weather climates.
Porcelain tile costs a little more than the traditional,
more porous, standard clay tile; however prices in general have been coming down
in recent years for ceramic tile.
Ceramic tile comes in either glazed or unglazed surfaces.
The glazed surfaces are like glass and are best used on walls as they are too
slippery for floor applications. Glazed ceramic tiles are also a little more
susceptible to cracking.
Ceramic tile is constructed using red, brown or white
clay. Most porcelain tile, however, is constructed using white clay.
When selecting any ceramic tile it is important to look at
the PEI factor. This is the scratch resistance factor. A PEI of 1 is ideal for
walls. A PEI of 2 is best for bathrooms and kitchens. A PEI of 3 is appropriate
for all residential applications, and PEIs of 4 and 5 are applicable for
commercial and heavy commercial applications, respectively.
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The MoH hardness factor is another factor to consider when
selecting tile. The scale goes from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest hardness
level (e.g. diamond). Most sand/dirt brought into a home has a hardness factor
between 3 and 7. Consequently it is best to select a ceramic floor tile that has
at least a MoH factor of 7.
A few manufacturers of porcelain and ceramic tile include:
American Olean, A&P Trading, Eliane and the Porcelanso group.
For more information on
ceramic tile and installing a shower pan membrane liner, see the
Pan Membrane Liner Installation Ebook
from HomeAdditionPlus.com. The Shower Pan Membrane Liner EBook will quickly
teach you the step-by-step process for installing the shower pan membrane liner
correctly. It includes instructions on framing the shower stall, pouring the
pre-slope and shower base mortar, and installing the shower pan membrane liner.
Ceramic Tile Calculator
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