Ceramic and porcelain tiles are both smart materials for a range of purposes, from bathrooms to kitchens and more. They are both made with natural materials and are available in a wide variety of different colours and designs, but which one should you choose for a project in your home? Whether you're renovating your bathroom or adding a backsplash to your kitchen, picking the right tiles is essential. Both ceramic and porcelain tiles have pros and cons, so understanding the differences between them can help you to make the best choice for your needs. Here's a quick guide to the differences between ceramic and porcelain and their advantages and disadvantages!
What Are Ceramic and Porcelain Tiles?
To start with, it's helpful to understand what exactly porcelain and ceramic tiles are made from and how they're made. Ceramic tiles are made from white, brown, or red clay, while porcelain tiles are made from white clay, sand, and feldspar (a group of minerals). Porcelain is fired at a higher temperature than ceramic, making it harder and denser.
The primary difference between these two types of tiles is how much water they absorb. Porcelain absorbs less water compared to ceramic and other types of tiles. This is because porcelain tiles are made of denser clay, which is less porous.
Pros of Ceramic Tiles
Ceramic tiles have several benefits, including being lightweight, low-maintenance, and functional. They are available in a range of designs and offer great flexibility as they are quite easy to cut and lay. This also means they are a little bit less expensive than porcelain tiles.
Cons of Ceramic Tiles
One of the drawbacks of ceramic tiles is that they're not as durable as porcelain tiles. Using the Abrasion Resistance Porcelain Enamel Institute (PEI) Rating, which goes from 0 to 5, porcelain tiles tend to score between 3 and 5, while ceramic tiles are usually no higher than 3. However, this still makes them perfectly suitable for residential walls and floors.
Pros of Porcelain Tiles
Porcelain tiles have some great benefits too. They are extra durable with a heavy weight, which makes them excellent if you're looking for a long-lasting tile. Porcelain tiles are also low-maintenance and easy to care for. They absorb less water and are stain-resistant, plus they can be coloured on the tiles themselves, meaning they come in a huge range of colours, patterns and designs, whereas ceramic tiles are coloured with a glaze. Porcelain tiles are also hard-wearing enough that they are suitable for a wide range of uses, including outdoor and commercial use.
Cons of Porcelain Tiles
For many people, the only real drawback of porcelain tiles is the cost. Porcelain tiles typically cost a little bit more compared to ceramic tiles because they are more expensive to manufacture.
Porcelain and ceramic tiles each have their own benefits and drawbacks. Both of them are great choices for your home projects, but you might want to choose carefully to pick the right one for certain uses. If you would like any more info or help on making the correct decision on tiles for your project, feel free to get in touch with our expert design team!