Ceramic Tiles And Porcelain Tiles – Complete Comparison To Find Out Which One Is Best For Your Home.

Published by Rachit on

Many homeowners often wonder when to build their dream home is what flooring materials would be best for their kitchen, bathroom, and the like. Should we go for porcelain tiles or ceramic tiles? Which would be more practical and sustainable?

At first glance, both ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles look similar and it can be difficult to distinguish between the two. These tiles are available in many options in terms of size, design, color, and pattern.

Note that porcelain tile is also a type of ceramic tile, which is made from comparatively more refined clay.

Ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles are used for the same applications, are installed in the same way, and have substantially the same properties and drawbacks as floor or wall surface materials.

So if you are about to get started with a home renovation or new home construction, where you have to choose between ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles, read on for the pros and cons of using them.

Ceramic Tiles and Porcelain Tiles

A general difference between ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles:

Ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles are similar in many ways.

How they both made:

Red, white or brown clay used to made ceramic tiles. The clay is first fired at a high temperature to reduce the water content, then the glaze is applied followed by the pattern.

Porcelain is a subtype of ceramic tiles. It is a mixture of refined white clay, sand, and feldspar. They are baked at high temperatures, reducing the amount of water they contain. This helps make porcelain tiles super strong.

Appearance:

Ceramic tiles are generally available in solid colors, but modern production techniques allow ceramic producers to create materials that can be printed or embossed in many ways. Solid tiles can be mixed and matched in patterns or accented with custom designs or motifs.

ceramic tiles- design

Porcelain tiles are very good at imitating natural stones such as marble or wood grain. This makes porcelain tile a great option where you want the look of wood without susceptibility to water damage on the wood.

Water and heat resistance:

Ceramic tiles are somewhat susceptible to moisture intrusion, although the differences are minimal if the tile is glazed. Ceramic tile has excellent heat resistance.

Porcelain tiles have good heat resistance. Also, the water resistance is better than ceramic.

The international standard for porcelain tiles establishes that to qualify as porcelain tiles, it must have a water absorption rate of less than 0.5%. The water absorption rate of ceramic tiles is usually more than 3%.

Cleaning:

Ceramic tiles are very easy to clean with a mop damp with a mild soap water solution. The cement grout that fills the joints between the tiles should be sealed periodically to protect it from stains and decay.

The care and cleaning requirements for porcelain tiles are similar to those for ceramic tiles.

Maintenance repair:

Both ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles are considered very low maintenance materials. The biggest concern for both is grout, which can absorb stains or cracks over time. Grout is a porous material even when set, and must be sealed to prevent damage from regular use.

If the damage is to both tiles, it is not difficult to remove and replace an individual piece.

It’s a good idea to keep an extra box or two of the product during installation to make color matching easier.

 

How to differentiate between ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles?

The quickest and easiest way to find out if you have porcelain or ceramic tile is to check the box or the manufacturer’s website. If a tile is described as polished, it is likely porcelain tiles.

Porcelain tile is the same color throughout the material. The thickness of a piece of broken or chipped porcelain tile will have a uniform color. Ceramic tiles often have a glossy surface color, so chips may reveal a different color on the underside.

Porcelain tiles will absorb less water. A drop of water placed on the side of the tile will settle on the tile in about a minute. The liquid from porcelain tiles will remain on the surface for several minutes or even until it evaporates.

Ceramic tiles are not as dense as porcelain tiles and are therefore slightly lighter in comparison.

Advantages of ceramic tiles:

Easy to install:

Ceramic tile is less dense than porcelain tile and therefore less durable, it is also an easy material to cut by hand for homeowners with wet tile saws or pressure tile cutters.

Also Read: How to install the tile: Step by step procedure for installation of tiles

The price is low:

Ceramic tiles are cheaper than porcelain tiles. Ceramic tiles cost on average, about 60 to 70 percent of the cost of porcelain tiles.  The estimated price of ceramic tiles is Rs. 10 to 50 per square foot

Disadvantages of ceramic tiles:

Low water resistance:

Water-resistance is probably the most important factor in decisions about ceramic tile or porcelain tiles. Ceramic tile is more porous and therefore has a higher water absorption rate. It should not be used in external applications.

Greater chance of cracking than porcelain tiles:

The clays used for ceramic tiles are less dense than porcelain tiles, which means that ceramic tiles are somewhat prone to cracking and breaking.

If a ceramic tile chips, you will find a different color under the top glass, which means the chips are likely to be quite visible.

ceramic tiles - solid

Advantages of porcelain tiles:

Body composition:

Due to its body structure, it is considered more durable and better for heavy use than ceramic tiles. A porcelain tile chip and it continues the same color throughout the tiles, as a result, the damage is almost invisible.

Durability:

Porcelain tile is considered the toughest flooring option available on the market. Besides being solid, porcelain tiles are also hard, dense, and highly resistant to the strongest impact, perfect for commercial use.

Disadvantages of porcelain tiles:

The cost is high:

One of the downsides of using porcelain tiles is the fact that they can be a bit pricey compared to standard ceramic alternatives.

The total cost will increase by approximately 25-50% depending on where it will be installed.

However, the great thing about porcelain tiles is that it can last for several decades, making it an overall good investment.

The estimated price of porcelain tiles is Rs. 20 to 100 per square foot

A person with a skill required for installation:

Porcelain tiles are more brittle and resistant, making it difficult to obtain accurate cuts without special saws and may require an experienced person to raise the price of the project. More time for the cutting and installation process than ceramic tile.

Weight:

One of the greatest advantages of porcelain tiles, its high density and resistance also worry you if you are concerned about weight. Because porcelain tiles are slightly heavier than ceramic tiles. Always consider whether your current floor can support the weight of porcelain tile before installing.

 

What are better ceramic tiles or porcelain tiles?

Are ceramic or porcelain tiles better for you? Depends on it. Different types of tiles are suitable for different parts of a house.

Bathroom:

Since porcelain tile is almost waterproof, porcelain tile is the best material to use when installing a wet room due to the level of humidity.

Ceramic is perfect for everyone to use in a standard bathroom with a wide variety of designs available with non-slip properties.

Outdoor area:

The high water resistance of porcelain tiles makes them a better choice for outdoor patio or other outdoor uses.

This is especially true for areas with cold climates because ceramic tiles are more likely to absorb water and then crack in cold conditions, which means you will need to replace the flooring. In this case, porcelain tiles will give you peace of mind.

porcelain tiles- outdoor

Photo by form PxHere

Floor:

The durability of porcelain tiles makes it perfect for high traffic areas, as it is scratch and stain-resistant. Whether in an area of ​​the home that sees high traffic, such as a hallway or kitchen or in a commercial space, porcelain tiles are the best option.

Ceramic floor tiles have a smoother surface and are more comfortable to walk on than porcelain tiles. Their tendency to stay cooler than porcelain makes them popular in homes in hot climates.

Do it yourself:

Ceramic tiles are very easy to work with if you are going to install the tiles yourself. Especially in areas that require a lot of cutting for the tiles to be installed properly.

Also Read: Different Types of Tiles and its use with picture

Final thoughts:

When evaluating the pros and cons of ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles, consider your taste in decorating, your budget, and the places needed to decorate.


Rachit

Civil Engineer

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