Tiles are one of the most practical materials for bathroom floors, but only if you select the right tile types. Bathrooms are generally areas that are exposed to a lot of moisture, and bare feet – the two often don’t go together. Moisture in itself can also be a problem.
When selecting bathroom floor tiles, you need to take those two factors into consideration. You also need to consider how much ventilation you have; for example, does your bathroom have extractors to remove steam and excess moisture in the air? If you don’t, you will need to consider whether or not you have the extra time required to deal with excess moisture – this is a factor to consider no matter what materials you use for a bathroom floor.
If you are considering tiling an outdoor floor area, you may be tempted to follow the trend of using a single tile type. This looks good, and in most situations, it probably is the most practical approach. It will generally be the most practical approach when it comes to cost, laying and ongoing maintenance. However, if you are looking for something different, then the sky really is the limit.
To begin with, you don’t have to use a single tile type. You can often combine tile types for a very effective finish. For example, you could have a granite tile as your major tile type and slate tiles to form a ‘path’ across the granite. I use those two as examples; you can really choose any two (or more ) tiles in this way.
Natural stone tiles are made from materials that are abundantly available natural resources. How abundant? The earth is made from stone so we’ll probably never run out. As a floor covering, natural stone can last for a very long time – centuries even. When they do break down, natural stone tiles become dust – a environmentally friendly product. The fact that you don’t have to replace a natural stone floor for a long time is another important issue to consider.
If you compare natural stone tiles to man-made products such as linoleum and vinyl, the environmental effect is very different. Linoleum and vinyl take a long time to break down, and when they do, there is always a risk that toxic substances are left behind. There are even concerns that man-made products could expose people to a wide range of chemicals, some of which have been linked to problems such as asthma.