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Ceramic Wall & Floor Tile ~ Austin, Texas

Ceramic Tile Definitions
Moisture Absorption & Tile Density
Production Methods
Ceramic Tile Video

Ceramic & Porcelain Tile ~ Long Lasting Value

Practically indestructible from normal everyday wear, ceramic and porcelain tiles are truly one of the best flooring materials available. Both these tile types offer the remodeler almost unlimited possibilities in residential and commercial applications.

Castle Floors supplies a large selection of custom tile medallions & decorative trim pieces along with our experienced designers and tile installers for walls, counter tops, bathtubs and shower enclosures. Whether your project requires an interior, or exterior tile application, our full-service Austin tile outlet is ready to help you.

Ceramic tile is created from clay, natural minerals & water. Glazed tile carries a ceramic coating giving the tile its finish and color. Glazed ceramic tiles are naturally an excellent choice for interior floors & walls because they are:

  1. Durable - professionally installed ceramic tile outperforms and outlasts just about every other floor covering material created for a similar application.
  2. Easy care - glazed ceramic tiles resist odors, stains & dirt, plus tile can be cleaned easily with a sponge, damp mop, or most ordinary household cleaners like Spic and Span, Mr. Clean, or Top Job.
  3. Scratch resistant - Grade III & Grade IV ceramic glazed tiles are very resistant to scratches and scuff marks.
  4. Environmentally friendly - manufactured with natural materials, ceramic tile doesn't retain any allergens, bacteria, or odors.
  5. Versatile and Beautiful - technology in today's ceramic manufacturing has created an almost unlimited choice of colors, styles, sizes, textures and shapes to add beauty and character to any room's decor.
  6. Resistant to Fire - ceramic tile will not burn or give off toxic fumes.
  7. Water Resistant - glazed ceramic tiles will not absorb moisture, meaning common liquid spills in the kitchen are of little concern.
Ultimately, ceramic tile is a functional and practical choice for floors, countertops, or walls. Tile offers versatility in application as well as beauty from its design potential.

Ceramic Tile ~ Definitions

Ceramic tiles are a mixture of different clays pressed into shapes then fired at very high temperature giving it extreme hardness. Afterwards, the bisque, or the outside body of ceramic tiles can be glazed, or used unglazed dependent upon application.

Classifications - P.E.I (Porcelain Enamel Institute) Wear Ratings:
  • Group I - Tiles suitable for residential bathroom installations where the foot traffic is light. Wall tiles are in this category; some can be used on floors.
  • Group II - Tiles appropriate for use in moderate traffic areas, except on floors having lots of traffic like in foyers, kitchens, a laundry room, etc.
  • Group III - The category of tile products which are suitable for most all residential installations.
  • Group IV - Tiles suited for light to medium commercial installations as well as all residential applications.
  • Group V - Tiles that can be used for heavy traffic areas; they're also recommended for damp areas where safety is necessary such as food service facilities, exterior locations, swimming pools, shopping malls, etc.

Glazed - This is the most common type used for today's floors and walls in both residential & commercial applications. Glazing is a liquid glass applied to the tile's surface which is then heated to a high temperature. The glazed body is non-porous and very hard, resulting in a flooring surface that is:
  • Resistant to stains
  • Resistant to scratches
  • Fire resistant
  • Not faded by sunlight
  • Resistant to slipping
  • Easy to keep clean
Shiny glazes can be somewhat softer and are more easily scratched. They are also more slippery than rustic, or satin tile finishes.

Unglazed - No glazing, or coating is applied to this type of tile. Colors are uniform throughout the tiles which results in a durability that resists the effects of heavily trafficked areas. Red quarry tile and/or ceramic porcelain tiles are today's most commonly used, unglazed tile types.
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Moisture Absorption & Tile Density
Tile Density - As weight and/or density increases, the tile becomes stronger.

Moisture Absorption - Density reduces the volume of moisture a tile may absorb.

As density of tile increases, moisture absorption rates are less. Moisture absorption and tile densities are an important aspect of tile selection for your application.

Non-Vitreous Tiles - these tiles can absorb 7% or more moisture. They're only suited for indoor use.

Semi-Vitreous Tiles - will absorb between 3% to 7% moisture. They too are only suitable for indoor use.

Vitreous Tiles - the absorption of moisture is less than 3%. Often referred to as being frost resistant tiles, yet can't really be used outside where freeze and thaw conditions might cause tiles to crack.

Impervious Tiles - the most dense having less than a .5% moisture absorption rating. They are frost proof and may be used in any exterior area, or for outside surfaces and facades of buildings.
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Production Methods
Bicottura - This is Italian for "double fired". Here the clay is first fired on an initial run through the kiln. Next the glaze is applied and the tile is kiln fired for a second time. This process is used mainly to produce decorative tile medallions and wall trim.

Monocottura - An Italian word that means "single fired". The tile is passed through the kiln firing process a single time at temperatures of 2,200+ degrees. Monocuttura tiles are denser in body and have harder glazing than Bicottura tile.

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Castle Flooring, L.L.C., 2068 South Lamar, Austin, TX 78704, 512-326-8820
Open Monday - Friday 11am - 5pm | Saturday - 10am - 3pm | Closed on Tuesday