Tiling for Home or Business
What to consider when it’s time for new tiling, and how to navigate the choices to achieve maximum functionality and style
When it comes time for renovations or a light make over, new tiles in your home or business can make the biggest overall visual and functional impact. Tiles take up much of the space in a bathroom, laundry or kitchen – and if you opted for tiled floors throughout the home then replacing them has the same impact as a fresh coat of paint on the walls!
If things are looking a little bit dated, tired or starting to break down – it’s time to start planning to re-tile. Sometimes it feels like you need to overhaul your whole space, when really just replacing the tiles can be all that is needed. So before you budget for a massive renovation, consider the overall impact of having a tile replacement instead. Taking some photos of the space and imagining them with a different, fresh set of tiles can help you see how simple and uncomplicated the transformation could be – at a fraction of the cost of a full scale reno.
How to tell that it’s time for a tiling upgrade
Some of the signs that you’re due for a tile replacement in your bathroom, kitchen or laundry are obvious: maybe you just don’t like the tiles themselves anymore, or their aesthetic. Other signs include more practical issues such as:
Once the tiles in your home have reached a point where they could cause injury, illness or they simply don’t look good anymore – it’s time for them to go! Just like carpets, there is only so long you can keep them for before they’re out of style and potentially hazardous.
Balancing styling with functionality
When you’re choosing tiles for your bathroom, laundry or kitchen – there are a number of things to consider. No matter the room, the following things need to be thought out:
Often the required function of the tiles are going to have the biggest impact on what kind of tile finish and style you ultimately decide on.
For flooring there are Slip Ratings for tiles that distinguish between oily floors – like the kitchen – and wet barefoot floors like the bathroom or laundry. Newcastle Shower Seal helps clients decide on the Slip Rating required for their new tile floors, and navigate the choices from there.
For splash backs in the kitchen, laundry and bathroom glossy finishes are usually chosen to make cleaning easier, while purely decorative walls could have any texture desired – beauty is in the eye of the tile beholder where that is concerned!
Most common types of tiles
There is a relatively large range of tiles out there, and it can definitely seem overwhelming when you first start your research. This is why we strongly urge people to get the help of professionals like those at Newcastle Shower Seal to help them navigate the choices, but getting yourself a basic understanding of what’s out there can help speed the process along and put your mind at ease. The most likely types of tiles that you will use or encounter include:
These types of tiles are arguably the most popular choice for many functions for good reasons. They absorb very little water, so little that they’re almost considered water proof, and they are incredibly dense and tough making them fantastic choices for flooring and any other surface that is used hard. Glazed porcelain tiles are the best of both worlds – they have all of the guts of porcelain, but with the option for detailed prints across the surfaces via glazing. You can have glazed porcelain tiles with wood grain, stone and marble prints that are entirely convincing.
The ceramic tile is all around us, having been faithfully manufactured for thousands of years now. They are still largely in use because they’re great at what they do – they’re durable, easy to clean and they look damn good doing it. They are often found as kitchen splashbacks and bathroom detailing. Ceramic tiles come in a startling array of colours and designs, and are generally quite small in size and come in sheets which makes them a little easier to lay and change at will.
Mosaic tiles are used primarily for aesthetic beauty and as gorgeous wall or flooring features, however their use as an extra-grippy floor is not to be over-looked. Due to their very small size, they require a myriad of small joins and grouting to bring the design together and this can result in both a stunning display and a floor with impressive grip. This may be best used in a tactical spot in the bathroom, as a wall runner in a kitchen or bathroom, or as a beautiful feature wall.
Natural Stone Tiles
Stone tiles is a broad term to refer to any tiling made from natural stone. This could include slate, sandstone, marble, granite and quartz. While they are undoubtedly beautiful, they are also incredibly expensive and so these types of tiles are certainly put into the luxury category. While they may be strong, natural stone tiles generally require more regular sealing and maintenance, and are harder for tilers to lay – so the costs really start to add up. Luckily, advances in technology have ensured that there are some truly stunning stone-finish tiles out there that come at a fraction of the cost of true natural stone. However, if your heart is set on natural stone and you have the budget for them, the wow-factor is absolutely worth it.
Other types of tiles do exist including encaustic, cement and terracotta – but these are becoming less popular as the ability of more durable types of tile to mimic their finishes increases.
What does tiling involve?
Tiling or re-tiling involves many steps that need to be planned and thought out with precision. The addition of the overwhelming amount of tools and materials you would need to gather, along with the amount of carefully planned steps makes it a job that most people would not attempt themselves. We very strongly recommend that our clients get professionals to carry out their tiling and renovations, because it ultimately can save them a lot of time any money. Any mistakes that you make in the tiling process can end up being extremely stressful and expensive, and they’re easy to do if you don’t specialise in that area.
When planning your tiling job, you should consider that it isn’t just about the tiling itself – you also need your new tiles properly grouted and sealed so they are built to last and safe to use. A quick look at the Bunnings how-to tiling guide makes it quickly apparent just how much is involved in a job like this – and this is arguably a very thorough but simplified guide. Though the explanation is straight forward, the work itself leaves no room for error.
Qualified and licenced Tilers have created a career out of specialising in this role, purely due to its complexity. For that reason, we always urge those who make enquire with us or are working with us on wider renovations to use a professional to get their jobs done right, first go.
How to organise your tiling project
Organising and planning your tiling process is much the same as any other renovation project, and it follows these basic steps:
Once you have mulled over the points above, it’s time to contact the awesome team at Complete Shower Seal to talk about giving your bathroom, kitchen or laundry the face lift it deserves with some gorgeous and functional new tiles. If you’re reading through the list of suggestions and feeling overwhelmed or have questions – don’t hesitate to give our team of experts a call to discuss any of those points. We make it our entire business to make sure our clients feel supported through the planning process, and ecstatic at the final result.