Ceramic tiles: what they are, types and options for your home

Ceramic tiles: what they are, types and options for your home

24 February, 2023

Learn all about ceramic tiles: how they differ and the best options for your home or business.

Are you thinking of renovating your home and are you considering using ceramic tiles?

“Tiles” is a fairly generic term, used to define a type of flat block, made from clay, silica, colouring and other raw materials.

All these materials are ground and pressed in different processes. They are then compacted and subjected to firing and cooling processes. 

This results in slabs of different thicknesses and densities (from 2 to 20 mm), which are used to cover surfaces such as walls and floors. 

Characteristics of ceramic tiles

In the case of ceramic tiles, all tiles must meet certain technical requirements, as established by European regulations.

These will be different depending on: 

  • Type of manufacture: extrusion, dry pressed, other approved craft processes.
  • Finishes: glazed or unglazed.
  • Location: Indoor, outdoor, cladding or paving.

Among the characteristics that define the different types of tiles, the following stand out: 

  • Absorption capacity.
  • Installation process (size and thickness, surface appearance, constancy of tone, expansion due to humidity/thermal expansion, etc.).
  • Mechanical requirements (resistance to impact, scuffing, scratching, loss of gloss and surface and/or deep abrasion).
  • Other mechanical requirements (resistance to staining, lead and cadmium release, chemical resistance).
  • Durability (resistance to cold, frost, heat and sudden temperature changes).
  • Safety (skid, fire and slip resistance).
  • Other characteristics (thermal conductivity, permeability, mould resistance, corrosion resistance and salinity resistance).
What is ceramic tiles

Types of ceramic tiles

In addition to the characteristics mentioned above, we can distinguish different types of ceramic tiles according to the raw materials used (red body or white body), the modelling and type of pressing, the firing method, the application of glazes or the mechanical treatments applied.

Another classification of ceramic tiles could be established according to their use (flooring, cladding, façades or special ceramics).

Taking all of the above into account, the most important types of tiles are:  

Classic tiles

Tiles are mainly used for interior wall cladding.

They are obtained using the semi-dry pressing technique and with one or more firings (single and double firing). 

One of the main characteristics of the tiles is their fine, glazed surface, with a very wide range of colours and decorations.

In addition, they have a high water absorption capacity, which is why they are commonly used in bathrooms and kitchens. 

Stoneware tiles

Stoneware ceramic tiles are basically used for floor coverings. 

They are generally manufactured by the semi-dry pressing method, although there are some cases of extrusion. 

With a hardness higher than that of tiles (between 3 and 8 according to the Mohs hardness scale), it decreases proportionally to the state of the surface: that is, the smoother the surface of the stoneware, the less hardness the tile will have.

As far as its absorption capacity is concerned, it is between 2 and 10%, which means that stoneware tiles can be laid both indoors and outdoors

Porcelain stoneware tiles

These are the most commonly used types of ceramic tiles

With an absorption capacity of less than 0.5%, they come in a wide variety of colours and formats, and are used both for interiors (kitchens, bathrooms and dining rooms) and exteriors (swimming pools, façades and terraces).

Porcelain tiles also have low porosity, which translates into great hardness and resistance to cutting, making them easy to handle and lay. 

Types ceramic tiles

Why choose ceramic tiles for your home? 

Ceramic tiles are one of the best options for wall and floor coverings due to their advantages, among which we highlight: 

  • Sustainability. Ceramic tiles are a natural product, as their main raw material is clay. 
  • Hardness. Ceramic is a strong and robust material that withstands cold, heat and sudden changes in temperature. 
  • Hygiene. This type of tile has antibacterial and waterproof properties. 
  • Safety. Ceramic floors are non-slip, being very functional in wet areas.
  • Cleanliness. This type of flooring does not require special maintenance and is easy to clean. 
  • Versatility. There are an infinite number of ceramic products in different colours and shapes, so they adapt to all types of aesthetics and design. 

L’Antic Colonial ceramic tiles: authentic designs that are both original and distinctive, but also classic. 

At L’Antic Colonial we have several series of ceramic tiles.

Choose the Retro series if you are looking for unique reflections and a sensation of depth; or the Faces series if you are looking for original and somewhat futuristic spaces with attractive reliefs and shapes.

For the most classic, we suggest our Mediterránea and Ibiza ceramic tile series, inspired by the sea and with matt and gloss finishes. Or the Touch series, striking for its smooth pieces of small squares. 

And if you want a more original and ethnic alternative, take a look at our Nazarí series, with irregular edges and a cheerful design, inspired by traditional Moroccan ceramics. 

Find out all about our ceramic tiles and choose the one that best suits you.

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