Home Improvement: Different Tiles for Floors, Roofs and Ceilings- Why?

Home Improvement: Different Tiles for Floors, Roofs and Ceilings- Why?

While I might be tempted to settle for a plain cement floor that thought quickly changes when I see how gorgeous (and practical) tiled floors are.

Tiles are made from a variety of materials. For homes they are often made of ceramic and stone, although metal and glass are also used. The choice of tile depends on several factors; depending if they are meant for the roof, the floor, or the wall – the bathroom, the living room, the kitchen and so forth.

Untreated natural stone looks like a sponge under a powerful microscope – this is because it’s porous. When used in-doors, ceramic and stone tiles are glazed to cover up pores which not only makes it easier to clean and look better but prevent it from soaking up spills which causes deep staining, and grime and pathogens that can be a health hazard. Some people like the look of natural stone as it is and prefer to forgo glazing, though they’ll have to be more careful not to mess the place up. Walls are unlikely to be the recipient of spilt drinks so these are most convenient to leave unglazed.

For more information about getting tiling work done, visit a tiling contractor.

Roof Tiles

These keep rain from seeping into your living space by providing an impermeable layer to water and to facilitate draining. Roof tiles are commonly made from locally available materials (terracotta and slate are traditionally used because they are naturally impermeable), although modern materials such as concrete, plastic and waterproofed clay are quickly gaining popularity.

Floor Tiles

When choosing a floor tile it is important to consider a few important characteristics to consider: durability, aesthetics, porosity, and traction. You’re likely to find ceramic and stone tiles everywhere while more recently rubber and glass have also been used. To fix tiles into place, a mortar comprising of sand, cement and latex additive is common.

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Granite is a solid material and is perfect for resisting scratching and moderate impacts.

Natural stone tiles are perfect for home use due to their inherent beauty, but are often less-than-optimal as they are; steps need to be taken before grandpa slips or Little Billy spills and stains the floor with vintage wine. Sandblasting polished stone such as granite and marble make them less slippery and small tiles have denser number of grout lines which act as grooves that provide traction. Look for tiling services for more information about correct grout sizes.

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Wall tiles can be thinner than floor tiles, as they aren’t expected to bear the same burden.

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Small tiles increase the density of grout lines about it, improving traction in wet places like bathrooms.

Typically, a more durable tile is preferable for floor surfaces. Floors take the brunt of abuse daily (kids stomping, carts rolling about, etc.). Durability can be measured in a variety of ways (flexibility, tensile strength, hardness, etc), but let’s focus on a few. In homes requiring both durability and aesthetics, nothing quite beats glazed hard natural stone. Soft stone won’t stand up to impact and scratching while ceramic that’s been chipped or scratched stick out like a sore thumb. Natural stone also comes in a variety of patterns and colours – perfect for a multitude of styles and looks.

Ceiling Tiles

Ceiling tiles need to be lightweight, water-resistant and thermal insulated. Lightweight because if too heavy they can come crashing down on you, especially if rain water starts to weigh down on it.

Ceiling tiles need to be water resistant because water does nasty things to concrete and the embedded metals inside, walls and ceilings. Embedded metals that come into contact with much water will start to corrode and expand, rupturing the concrete and generally making your home a little less safe (if the damage isn’t too extensive you can do your own concrete wall repairs). Water reaching down to walls and ceilings dampens them – and become perfect breeding grounds for germs, stinky smells and other potentially unhealthy things. Grime and dirt gets muddled in the dampness, too, forming unsightly dirty spots.

Ceiling tiles may also have patterns on their face fronts as they help improve acoustics within a room.

And, more importantly, ceiling tiles need to be fire retardant and prevent the spread of fire and smoke. Since heat mostly moves upwards, ceilings are right in harms way. If ceiling tiles break or get displaced hot gases and smoke will go right past the level of smoke detectors and sprinklers – bad, bad, bad.

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You DO NOT want this to happen.

Justine Foong

Likes lone walks in the park. Doesn't think that waiting an hour in a line for food is worth any recommendation. Believes that a major breakthrough in Engineered Negligible Senescence will come within this lifetime.