Porcelain tile is best understood as an enhanced form of ceramic. It is made from a mixture of clay, sand, and feldspar that is fired together, pressed and fused. The resulting tile is denser than standard ceramic and is stronger and more resistant to stains and moisture. For residential or commercial floors, this makes porcelain tile invaluable. Porcelain is a durable, low-absorption (0.5% of moisture or less) tile that can come in an endless number of styles so it is always worth considering regardless of where your current tiling project is taking place.
Types of Porcelain Tile
The above description works well for explaining porcelain tile in broad strokes but there are different types of porcelain with more specific traits and uses. When looking for a floor or wall tile, consider one of the following:
Technical porcelain is created when tiles are fired for an extended period. The resulting tile has water absorption of less than 0.1%, making it effectively impermeable and remarkably durable. The “technical” name comes from how this form of floor or wall tile meets the technical specifications set out by commercial or high traffic projects. If you have a commercial flooring project or one that may see a large volume of foot traffic, technical porcelain is highly advisable.
Centura Tile offers many technical porcelain lines like Valmalenco, Giugiaro, Rhyme, and Q-Stone.
Digital Printed Porcelain
The name comes from the way digital printing is used to infuse the porcelain tile with an image. Much as how television images are made up of millions of tiny dots, designs, and patterns are imprinted on digital printed porcelain using hundreds of injectors to create a glaze that gets sprayed on to the tile during production. The end result is the creation of tiles that can sport handmade effects, mosaics, fabric looks, or the reproduced looks of stone, wood, marble, or other more expensive or higher-maintenance surfaces. Digital printed tile is a popular residential tile since it can be used to create hassle-free and more durable reproductions of other materials or to provide unique, imaginative patterns.
Centura Tile offers digital printed porcelain tile in styles like Cottage Wood, Dark Fossil, Jewels, Maltese, Open, and Taj Mahal.
Glazed porcelain is popular in high moisture areas like bathrooms or kitchens. The glaze not only affords the tile a unique, glossy beauty, it serves as additional protection against water, mold, and mildew. They are also more scratch resistant than other forms of porcelain, making them ideal for countertops. Since the glaze is coloured, it is usually possible to find a style (glossy or not) that matches your interior design goals.
Centura Tile offers glazed porcelain styles like King Wood, Jacaranda, Brick Lane, and Temple Stone.
As the name implies, this is a form of full-body porcelain tile that does not feature a glaze. This gives the tile fewer visual options (since a glaze is needed to project printed images) but allows for better traction and durability. Commercial tile projects tend to prefer using unglazed tile since they are harder and denser and are less slippery than glazed alternatives.
Centura Tile offers unglazed porcelain in styles such as Dotti, Function, and Uni.
Centura Tile has been a leader in tiling since 1933. Our experienced staff can help you pick out the best variety of porcelain tile to meet both your function and fashion needs. To learn more about porcelain tile or to ask other tiling queries, feel free to contact us or visit a Centura Tile dealer near you.