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Ceramic Tile Stores Throughout the San Francisco Bay Area

Ceramic Tile Flooring

Ceramic tile is a beautiful option for any home. It presents almost endless design possibilities and is available in numerous shapes, colors, patterns, and glazes. The process by which tiles are manufactured results in two basic types: glazed and unglazed tile. The addition of glaze to a tile presents the opportunity for a variety of colors and patterns. Unglazed tiles are limited in appearance to the natural colors of clay.

Learn about ceramic tile basics, ceramic tile gallery, ceramic tile installation, ceramic tile questions and ceramic tile care and maintenance.

Ceramic tile is a beautiful option for any home. It presents almost endless design possibilities, available in numerous shapes, colors, patterns and glazes. Ceramic tiles are made of clay, which is fired at high temperatures within a clay oven or kiln to dry and harden the material.

The process by which tiles are manufactured results in two basic types: glazed and unglazed tile. After tile is fired within a kiln, a coating, or glaze similar to glass can be applied to the tile’s surface, at which point the tile is fired in the kiln again. The product of this process is a glazed tile. Unglazed tiles have no additional coating added to them and are simply fired one time. The addition of glaze to a tile presents the opportunity for the variety of colors and patterns you see on the market. Unglazed tiles are limited in appearance to the natural colors of clay.

Because of slight differences in the final product, there are differences in the way that glazed and unglazed tiles are used, and where they might be most appropriate for installation. If you have specific questions about which tile type is best for you, a Floor Store associate would be happy to help.

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to installing tile. It’s good to have a sense of what the process entails before you buy. At The Floor Store, we have years of experience and are happy to answer any of your specific tile installation questions. In the meantime, here’s a brief overview of what to expect.

 

Ceramic Tile Installation

At The Floor Store, we are a full-service flooring center with a 100% commitment to customer satisfaction. Our team is highly dedicated to providing customers with the best installation and continual service throughout the lifecycle of the flooring product we sell and install.

 

What To Expect During Your Tile Installation

Of the various do-it-yourself (DIY) floor covering installation challenges, ceramic tile is going to be for the advanced DIYer or a professional. Tile requires very particular sub-floor preparation. Frequently, a water-resistant backer-board is affixed to the subfloor, providing a secure, stable surface for tile installation.

As with all other forms of floor covering offered by The Floor Store, we have well-trained, skilled and experienced installers for your project. You can rely on them to produce a beautiful finished job, and to be careful and respectful of your home and property in the process.

 

During Your Tile Installation

On installation day, you should plan to be home. Expect a lot of noise and the potential for some above average dust. With that, you should have a plan for keeping children and pets well clear of the work areas.

You should have the room completely clear of furniture, according to your discussion with the installer ahead of time. Plan to provide ventilation for the new floor area, post-installation, to help clear related odors and dust.

 

After Your Tile Installation

New ceramic tile projects need time to cure and solidify. Typically, floors should not be walked on for at least 48 hours after the tiles are laid; similarly, ceramic tile shower stalls and counters should remain completely moisture free for a couple days so the grout can completely dry.

After installation, if you are sensitive to dust and odors, good ventilation should be established for 48 to 72 hours after installation to make sure that dust from the installation settles. From there, routine care and maintenance are up to you!

If you have questions about floor maintenance, we would be happy to answer them for you. Feel free to contact us.

What are ceramic tiles made from?

Ceramic tiles are made from clay that is heated to very high temperatures in a kiln. This process of “firing” the clay hardens it, creating a material that is useful for all kinds of applications.

 

What is the difference between glazed and unglazed tile?

When it comes to ceramic tile, there are two basic types: glazed and unglazed tile. Glazed tile has a non-porous coating added to the tile after it has been fired. Unglazed tiles have no additional coating. Because of their non-porous surfaces, glazed tiles work well in kitchens and baths. They are also popular because glazing presents options for a variety of patterns and colors. Unglazed tiles tend to be a bit more durable and are great for a variety of interior and exterior uses.

 

What makes porcelain tile different from ceramic tile?

All ceramic tiles are made from clay and kiln-fired. Porcelain tiles are a specific kind of ceramic tile, made from a specific kind of clay. Whereas most ceramic tiles are made from red or white clay, porcelain tiles are made from a light-colored clay with a slightly different chemical composition. Porcelain clay, when fired at high temperatures, creates a tile that is more durable and more moisture-resistant than other ceramic tiles.

 

How is tile flooring installed?

Generally speaking, tile flooring has to be adhered to a subfloor with a tile adhesive or mortar. Once it has been secured, the joints between tiles need to be sealed with grout to fill in the space and create a uniform, secure flooring surface. Be sure to ask a Floor Store associate if you have specific questions about tile installation.

 

Where can I install ceramic tile?

Ceramic tiles can be installed almost anywhere. They can be used both indoors and out and are appropriate for installations at, above or below grade (ground-level). They are frequent choices for kitchens and baths because they are durable and moisture-resistant.

How do I keep my ceramic tile clean?

The beauty and life of your ceramic tile floors depends on how you care for it. Follow a proper cleaning routine to keep it looking great over time. A few easy steps can extend the life of your ceramic tile flooring solution.

 

How long will ceramic tile last?

If installed properly and maintained, ceramic tiles can last many, many years. There are slight differences in the durability of different kinds of tile. Glazed tiles will wear more easily than unglazed tiles and porcelain tiles will last longer than other ceramic tiles.

 

How do I know if my grout joints need to be resealed?

If you place a few drops of water on your grout and it beads up, your sealer should be fine. If your water absorbs into the grout, you will need to reseal it.

 

How should I clean my ceramic tile?

Ceramic tile floors are incredibly easy to maintain. You should sweep or vacuum regularly and mop them according to manufacturer recommendations. Grout should also be cleaned periodically, though some build-up and fading in color is inevitable. If your grout lines are dirty or have changed color, contact a Floor Store location near you to ask about how to restore them to their original color.

Some of Our Flooring Brands:

Marazzi | The Floor Store
Surface art | The Floor Store
(510) 296-6967