When designing a new kitchen, you’ll want a space that is both effective and beautiful. Here are some tips that will help with creating an effective kitchen. There are also a number of things you can do to create the look you want in your new kitchen. Using tile in the renovation of your kitchen can add a really nice aesthetic touch. Of course, you'll have a choice of a variety of tile types—with varying advantages and potential drawbacks—so which should you choose? Let's take a look at 5 tile types to consider for your Fresno-area-kitchen.
Ceramic tile is made up of a mixture of clay, minerals, and water. These tiles are fired at high temperatures. Some kinds of ceramic tiles are glazed and then treated with a liquid glass coating before being fired again. That high-temperature firing creates a hard surface that is both stain- and scratch-resistant. You’ll have a virtually unlimited assortment of colors from which to choose. Or you can choose unglazed tiles—commonly referred to as “quarry” tiles—for a softer, more natural look.
Ceramic tile is generally quite affordable, durable, and easy to install (saving you time on labor). As mentioned about, there are a wide variety of colors from which to choose. You’ll want to make sure you get tiles from the same lot because colors can vary from lot to lot—making it a challenge to match colors. There are also handmade ceramic tiles, which will give your kitchen a unique look. Handmade tiles, however, can be a bit pricey.
Glass tiles are actually comprised of thin pieces of glass often available as a mosaic, combined with other types of tile, on a mesh backing. These tiles can make very interesting backsplashes. Colors can range from subtle to vivid—depending upon your taste. It's almost like having a mural for a backsplash. Sometimes installation can be a bit tricky, so you might be looking at somewhat higher labor costs.
Porcelain tile is actually a subset of ceramic tile. The difference is that it is fired at an even higher temperature than conventional ceramic. The result is a material that is denser and less porous than regular ceramic. Those qualities make it a good choice for areas where you might be concerned about staining (as a backsplash behind a stove top). Porcelain’s smooth surface also makes it easy to clean.
Cement tile is a handmade product made from natural materials. These tiles often incorporate bold patterns. In addition to being quite resilient, these tiles are beautiful and versatile. You can use them on floors, walls, and backsplashes. You may tend to think of cement as inexpensive, but cement tiles are actually a bit pricey. They are also prone to etching if exposed to acidic materials or harsh detergents. To protect them, you’ll have to have them sealed regularly.
There are a variety of natural stone tiles. You can choose from granite, slate, travertine, marble, onyx, or sandstone (among others). Natural stone tile has a rich look—and no two floors will look identical. These tiles are also quite versatile and can be used on floors, backsplashes, or walls. Like cement, however, the surface can be somewhat porous. That means water, acidic materials, and things such as red wine can damage it. It requires sealing upon installation and every 10 years or so after that.
You'll notice that we haven't suggested tile for countertops. While that was a trend some years ago, most homeowners didn't enjoy the fact that many tile countertops were subject to chipping. On top of that, the grout between tiles often presented problems for cleaning. Solid stone (granite, quartz, marble, cement, etc.) are much more durable and practical.