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Types of Porcelain tiles…

Depending on project objectives, porcelain tile may be purchased in glazed, unglazed or polished varieties. There are two main types of porcelain tile: Through-bodied porcelain and glazed porcelain.

Through-Bodied Porcelain

Term: The term “through-body” refers to the tile being consistent in composition through out the body of the tile. The color and texture runs through the entire dimensional thickness of the tile.

Features:
Strong and Dense Tile
Freeze/Thaw Stable for Exterior Use
Usually Slip Resistant unless polished
Superior Scratch & Chip Resistance
Similar color throughout if chip occurs
Choices may be limited
Material should be sealed

Composition: Through-body tile is derived from mixtures of clay, sand and other natural minerals that are shaped into tile and fired at high temperatures. Through-bodied porcelain does not have a glaze. The clay is pressed and then fired.

Appearance: Through-body tile is considered as one of the most fashionable choices for floors, walls and countertops. It may have texture and color applied to the surface before firing but it is still the porcelain material from top to bottom. The color of the tile runs throughout its body.

Performance: The pressed dust method results in a porcelain tile with a density so high the water absorption is less than 0.5%. It is a strong tile that can withstand extreme surface traffic. There is no glaze that can wear off. If the tile chips, the same or similar color is underneath.

Usage: Through-bodied porcelain tiles can be used for both residential and heavy commercial installations. They can also be installed at wet locations and areas where slip resistant floors are needed.

Glazed Porcelain

Term: Glaze is a glass wear layer or hard finish (usually colored), applied to the surface of machine-made clay tiles. The term “glaze” can also refer to the material or mixture from which the coating is made.

Features:
Strong and Dense Tile
Freeze/Thaw Stable for Exterior Use
Superior Stain Resistance
Many Choices in Color and Style
Only seal if glaze has been polished

Composition: Glazed porcelain has a body made of the porcelain material and a glaze applied over the surface. It is almost similar to that of a regular ceramic tile. It is fired in a kiln and the result is a very strong bodied tile.

Appearance: Glazing, either shiny or matte, provides the most beautiful and varied colors, designs and decorations in ceramic tiles. Most bright, flashy tiles you see in tile displays are glazed.

Performance: Glazed tiles are non-porous. The glaze being an impervious facial finish protects tile from stains and moisture. These tiles are usually easier to maintain and can be treated for a higher slip resistance.

Usage: Vitreous glazed floor tiles are a durable option for counter tops and walls, providing a surface that is practically stain-proof. However, glazed porcelain is not recommended for heavy commercial installations.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

bets April 27, 2013 at 5:55 am

“Seal if glaze has been polished” ???

Ceramictec April 27, 2013 at 8:58 am

yes, during the polishing process it opens small pores in the tile when dark grout and dirt can absorb and stain the tile. so you should seal any porcelain tie that has been factory polished.

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