Published at Thursday, May 23rd, 2019 - 02:16:18 AM. Porcelain Tile. By Perceval Huet.
As a tile professional and owner of an online tile store, the difference between ceramic tile and porcelain tile has become a common question that comes up on a daily basis. I often hear a consumer say, ”I need porcelain tile because if it chips nobody will notice because the color goes all the way through.” Well, this is only true in through body porcelain tiles, and they are not the most common porcelain tiles. The most common form of tile is glazed porcelain tile. It is the most affordable but the color does not go all the way through. When I hear a customer say something along these lines it is time to ask myself a question. Should I explain or educate? In this article I will attempt to do both.
But the misinformation continues. The Porcelain Enamel Institute rates glazed floor tiles as to their resistance to abrasion. Glazed tiles are those to which a decorative layer has been applied over the clay body of the tile. Glazes are rated 1 through 5 with 5 being the highest or most durable grade. Many, if not most, porcelain tiles are not glazed, yet ask your tile sales person about the PEI rating of the porcelain tile you are examining in the showroom. It's very likely you'll hear something like, ”Oh, this is a grade 5 porcelain tile. You could lay this baby in a car factory.” I certainly don't aim to demean tile sales people. We need them and love them. Without them we'd be out of work. I do wish they'd get themselves a little better informed, though, so they can better inform the buying public about the virtues of ALL ceramic tiles.
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