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Porcelain for bathrooms

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Hi there,

 We are planning to renovate our bathroom, I would like to know what type of flooring would be preferable for bathrooms. I am looking for something which is cheap and durable. I don't care even if it's a bit costly but it has to last long because I don't want to keep doing the renovation frequently. I have shortlisted between porcelain and ceramic, which among the two would be best for the bathroom. I have read that porcelain is less water absorbent and durable than ceramic ( and I feel like it's better to install porcelain. But before proceeding with that I would like to get your suggestions.   

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I use porcelain tiles for all my projects, floor/walls/whatever.  Price can vary quite a bit depending on where you go or how interesting you want the tile pattern to be. 

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Most "tile" sold today is porcelain.  You can still get ceramic but a lot of it is wall tile which means it is soft and should not be installed on floors. Porcelain is a lot harder than ceramic as it is fired at a temp that is right next to glass.  Ceramic is made at a lot lower temp and the surface is usually glazed where porcelain is a solid product all the way through and is honed or polished.  Manufacturers  have shifted away from ceramic because of the raw materials used to make it.  As long as its installed correctly it will last as long as you want it.   Also think about installing heat cables under your tile especially if you live in a cold climate.  Your feet will love you for it!

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What about the ease of working with either as a DIY?  Is one harder to cut, more prone to breaking?  Need special equipment to work with?  What do you recommend in terms of buying - 10% extra, 20%..?  Prep differences?

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The tile world has changed dramatically over the last 10 years along with how it is installed.  Specialty mortars for glass, porcelain, ceramic.  Trends are for larger tiles.  New underlayments, tools, waterproofing,  etc etc........  Your installer needs to be educated on the latest techniques and products.  Tile Council of America has a "bible" book on how to install in any situation.


As far as working with the products,  they are different.   Porcelain is hard and cuts hard.  Edges can chip easily if not careful when working with it.  Tiles can be warped and difficult to level.  Ceramic= easier.  Different mortars for different tiles.   Prep is different for every situation.  A lot of new products out to make prep and install easier, faster, and perform better for many years.  5-10% extra is standard.  Diagonal layouts require more 15-18% depending on tile size.  This includes damaged product during shipping and handling.

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