10 Things You Should Know About Tiles | Expert Advice & Tiling Tips

Jun 24, 2022 by SHAUN BEZUIDENHOUT 

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Tiles have been around for longer than most people realize. You can find them in all sorts of settings. In fact, they are so common that many people find they have to stop and think when someone asks what tiles are, just because they are found everywhere. 

 

Tiles are simply thin slabs that may be square or rectangular in shape. They may be made using baked clay, ceramic, concrete, and other types of materials. As many tiling experts will point out, they can be used for all sorts of purposes inside and around the house. 

 

Are you interested in adding tiles to your home? Maybe you want to replace some existing tiles with something new. Whatever the case, here are some tips and ideas that you can put to good use.

1. Why Use Tiles in Your Home?

There are several reasons why tiles are such a popular option for homes. One of them has to do with durability. Many tiles are constructed in ways that ensure they are able to hold up to a lot of wear and tear. This is certainly true when it comes to flooring. Rooms that see a lot of foot traffic need a flooring option that won't begin to show signs of age after a short time. 

 

Another factor has to do with how easily tiles make the process of housecleaning. In general, tiles that are used in the home can be cleaned without a lot of difficulties. People who prefer to spend more time enjoying their homes rather than constantly having to do housework will appreciate how different sorts of tiles require minimal attention compared to other elements in the home.

 

Tiles are also cost-effective in comparison to other elements that may be used for floors or walls. While cheap tiles that are low quality should be avoided, it's not hard to find excellent tiles for reasonable prices. Between the initial cost and the durability, it's not difficult to see why tiles are such a good choice. 

 

Now that you know why people like to use tiles in their homes, it pays to learn a little more about how to choose floor tiles and maybe tiles for a wall or two. Here are some points to keep in mind. 

2. Understanding The Different Types of Tiles

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Tiling experts will readily point out there are many different types of tiles. Some of them are more appropriate for various areas of the house. Before you spend money on anything, it makes sense to have some idea of the kinds of tiles that are most often used in the area where you plan on installing them. 

 

When it comes to floor tiles, options like granite, marble and other natural stone tiles are worth considering. You can also invest in synthetic materials like linoleum. Don't overlook the possibility of using wood tiles if the style of your home allows it. 

 

In terms of wall tiles, all of the same options used for flooring can be utilized in this fashion. In addition, you may find that buying ceramic tiles or porcelain tiles would work well for the purpose you have in mind. A professional can provide some insight into what sort of tiles are a good fit for the area that is under consideration and even provide some help understanding how to properly prepare the floor or wall for those tiles. 

3. And The Type of Care Tiles Required

While you definitely want to learn various tile hacks that are aimed at selection, preparation, and installation, it's a good idea to find out how to take care of those tiles before they are purchased. In fact, the amount of care they need may be a factor that influences your final choice. 

 

For the most part, cleaning tiles will require using some type of cleaning agent that's gentle, will not scratch surfaces, but will remove dirt, grime, water spots, and any signs of mold that may appear. Whether on the floor or on a wall, it's possible to use sponges, washcloths, or cleaning rags to apply the cleaning agent. After getting rid of whatever has collected on the tile surface, rinsing and then drying with a clean cloth is often a good idea. 

 

To be sure you're using the right cleaning product, always check the manufacturer's list of recommended agents. While you're not likely to find a specific brand recommended, the manufacturer will describe cleaning products in a broad way, so you know what ingredients are safe for use on your particular type of tile. 

4. The Best Tiles for Various Floors

How do tiles work in various rooms? The fact is that they will do very well on the floors of just about any room of the house. Depending on which room you're talking about, different materials may be used to produce the type of effect that you want. 

 

In general, porcelain and ceramic are great options for many spaces. They hold up well and can be kept clean with relatively little effort. In areas where you are more interested in the floors being backdrops for the decorative elements, simple, unadorned tiles of this nature are likely to work well. 

 

You may find that some spaces are ideal for the use of natural stone tiles. That includes options like marble or granite. When you want the floor to be something other than a neutral element in the room, something along these lines is often the best choice. Keep in mind that you can have the tiles sealed with some sort of protective agent so that they repel water. This approach will keep them looking great for a number of years. 

 

If you're not sure what type of tile to use in a particular room, feel free to call on an expert. It won't take long to settle on something that is practical and adds to the overall ambiance you're hoping to create. 

5. Choosing Tile Colors

Among the tiling tips that you hope to master, knowing how to choose the right color is at the top of the list. In many ways, choosing a tile is a lot like choosing a wall color. You want something that looks nice, fits in with your plans for the space and happens to be a color that you won't grow tired of in a short amount of time. 

 

The thing to keep in mind is that tiles are not as easy to replace if you decide they no longer work in the space. A wall can be repainted, or a floor can be stripped and stained to a different shade. When tiles are in place, the old ones have to go, and new ones must be purchased and installed. Given the cost, it makes sense to go with something that you will like for a long time. 

 

Be mindful of choosing tile colors that are currently trending. Those are likely to make the space look dated in a decade or less. A better choice is to go with neutral tiles that you can dress up using area rugs or some other element within the space. You can also talk with an expert to identify tile colors that never seem to go out of style. One of those may work perfectly in your setting.

 

 

6. Thinking About Tiles for the Living Room

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Not everyone thinks of setting tile for a living room floor, but it can work very well. Along with being easy to keep clean, the tile can be the perfect backdrop to ensure the colors in the upholstery and the area rug stand out more. 

 

Consider what happens when you use a tile floor in this space that also reflects the neutral shade that you used for the walls. The colors in the furnishings, the accessories, and even the wall art give the room life. In a way, the choice of tile helps to call more attention to those elements and can create a welcoming atmosphere. 

 

7. Choosing Tiles For The Bathroom

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Christian Mackie (2019). Bright marble and gold bathroom with two sinks and two mirrors. [Photograph]. https://unsplash.com/photos/yb9b2wbhxG4

In the bathroom, the right tiles can serve several purposes. Along with providing a sense of cleanliness, the right tiles can make a smaller space look a little larger. The nature of porcelain or ceramic tiles also makes it easy to keep the space clean and relatively free of bacteria. 

 

The nice thing about tiles is you can choose colors that make it easy to update the look of the space when you like. Simply change the shower curtain, towels, artwork, and other elements to freshen the decor. That's an inexpensive way to change up the look for each season or just when you want to do something different with the space. 

 

8. Deciding on Tiles For The Kitchen

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Carolyn Christine (2020). Clean White Modern Kitchen [Photograph]. Unsplash. https://unsplash.com/photos/BxiOoyzu6-w

You spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Along with being functional, you also want the space to be attractive. As you learn all about tile options, it's easy to see how this approach can provide the best of both worlds. 

 

The right tiles make it easy to clean up splatters and other things that can happen while cooking. Once the cooking and washing up is done, you really don't want to spend more time cleaning the space. The right material will ensure cleaning is quick, and easy, and leaves the space ready for the next time you want to prepare a meal or snack. 

 

9. Basic Installation Tips That Apply to All Sorts of Tiles

Whatever type of project you have in mind, there are a few basic tile installation tips that will always apply. 

- One is, to begin with, a clean surface. Make sure there is nothing that would prevent the tile from adhering to that surface. This one tip will save a lot of frustration later. 

 

- You also want to make sure the surface is level. People who learn how to tile for a living can tell you this is a priority. When the surface is not level as well as smooth, the potential for buckling is definitely present. 

 

- There's also some skill needed when it comes to laying tile. Many experts know the best way to lay tile is to begin in the middle of the room and work toward each wall. This helps keep the pattern constant and also means any cutting that must be done can be handled along the wall line. 

 

10. The Importance of a Professional Installation

While you can learn all the tiling techniques yourself, the fact is that having a professional do the work is still the best bet. That's true for a number of reasons, some of which you may not be aware of. 

 

A professional will have the right tools for the job. There's also the matter of expertise. Professionals know how to organize the project and how to keep tile level when installing. They also know ways to ensure time is not wasted and ensure that steps don't have to be repeated. That translates into having the project done sooner rather than later. 

 

If you have a tiling project in mind, call a contractor like Floor Crafters Mobile Flooring Company and set up a visit to the home. You'll be surprised at how quickly the plans can be made, the affordable nature of the quote, and how soon the professional can begin the work.