When considering a shower tile installation or revamp, ceramic and porcelain are usually on the top list. They are durable, versatile, have a classic look, and clean-lined appearance. They are also moisture resistant, require low maintenance, and come in a wide variety of styles and designs.
However, despite their similarities, porcelain and ceramic have a handful of crucial differences that should be considered before making a purchase decision for shower tiles.
What is Better for Shower Tile Ceramic or Porcelain?
Aesthetics aside, the best showers tile should be slip-resistant and relatively impervious to water. Porcelain takes a higher than ceramic lead when it comes to shower tiles.
Its high density and low permeability make it better stain and water-resistant tile. Besides, bathrooms are one of the most commonly used rooms, and hence its durability and ability to withstand scuffs or scratches comes in handy.
However, this doesn’t mean that ceramic cannot be used for shower tiles. When compared to other options like carpet or laminate, ceramic tiles still represent a hard-wearing and durable choice.
Is Porcelain Tile Waterproof?
For something to be waterproof, it means that it is utterly impervious to water effects. Hence porcelain is not waterproof, but instead, it is water-resistant. It is hard, tough, dense, and less porous, making it highly resistant to liquid penetration.
Besides, the International Standard for Porcelain Tile states that for a tile to be qualified as porcelain, it has to have a water absorption rate of less than a tenth of 1%. That means porcelain is practically impervious to water damage even with prolonged exposure.
Is Ceramic Tile Waterproof?
Ceramic tiles are less dense and more porous than porcelain. Besides, their water absorption rate is more than 3%. Thus, they aren’t as water-resistant as the porcelain tiles. However, ceramic that has been glazed with a protective layer can be impervious against water and stain penetration.
How Do You Tell Porcelain from Ceramic?
At first glance, it can be challenging to tell the difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles. But some key differences need to be realized about these tile flooring options:
- Toughness- while both are designed from clay and other naturally occurring materials, porcelain is harder than ceramic. That can be attributed to the fact that the clay used to design porcelain is more purified and refined. It is also fired at greater pressure and higher temperature than ceramic, and that will result in a sturdy and dense material.
- Appearance– porcelain and ceramic usually have different overall appearances and colorings. Porcelain tile is typically white or grey while ceramic is recognized by its natural red terra-cotta finish. Ceramic can be glazed to create various designs and color; but porcelain tiles are typically left unglazed. White chips in the glazed ceramic are highly visible whereas in porcelain tiles the chips aren’t noticeable since they are of the same color throughout.
- Ease of cutting– since ceramic is less dense than the porcelain tiles; it is a lot easier material to cut manually. A wet tile saw or snap-tile cutter can cut ceramic without it cracking. Porcelain, on the other hand, is more brittle and might require the experienced hand of a tile-setter to cut it correctly.
- Price– typically, ceramic is a cheaper option, averaging at 60 to 70 percent of porcelain cost. That is because porcelain tiles take long and are more expensive to manufacture.
What Can You Put on Tile to Make it Less Slippery?
Slippery bathroom tiles are dangerous and can cause physical damage if someone slips. Here is what you can use to make tiles less slippery and avoid such accidents.
- Anti-slip treatment tile (AST-tile) – the treatment alters the tile top surface, creating a highly effective microscopic non-slip texture. It does not introduce coatings, overlays, or tapes but instead breaks down the hydroplaning action found on wet smooth surfaces. This will leave the tile durability and full toughness intact.
- Non- or anti-slip coating– as the name suggests, this entail coating the tile to create a high level of traction. The liners are available in satin, matte, and high gloss finishes. Moreover, they are UV-stable products that won’t yellow or produce any odors.
What is the Best Material for a Shower Ceiling?
When it comes to shower ceiling, tile is not necessarily the best material. You can choose moisture-resistant drywall, also known as greenboard. It is similar to the standard drywall except that it has a face paper (usually green) that has been treated for extra resistance to moisture and mold.
Some companies treat the gypsum core of the material. It is crucial to note that the greenboard costs more than standard drywall, but it is worth the extra expense.
Credit: Featured Image by WONJAE LEE from Pixabay