Common Tile Types: Benefits and Drawbacks

It may be as daunting as it is inspirational to enter a tile showroom. Although there are numerous alternatives available at various price points, the presentations are magnificent. Use Consumer Reports’ tile primer to learn more about this robust, beautiful material before you hurry to the home store for a package of plain white subway tile and miss the opportunity to make a big statement in your kitchen.

We consulted a panel of industry professionals, including tile installers, dealers, and manufacturers, to get their best advice on the advantages and disadvantages of the most popular varieties of tile.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Common Types Tiles

1. Ceramic

It is what? Ceramic tiles, which are made of a clay, mineral, and water mixture, are heated during firing. After applying a liquid glass coating and refining, glazed styles are given a strong, scratch- and stain-resistant surface. The term “quarry” is occasionally used to describe unglazed tiles.

Finest for:

Ceramic tile is frequently inexpensive, strong, simple to install, and available in an almost infinite variety of colors and designs. Ceramic tiles is best to install in the bathroom. Get the best Tile installation services in Port Oconnor TX.


Ceramics isn’t the best material for heavy-impact regions, and colors might vary from lot to lot. The cost of handmade or “art” tiles can be very high.

Pro-Tip: The term “quarry” is occasionally used to describe unglazed tiles.

2. Porcelain

A form of ceramic tile called porcelain is burned at a temperature higher than ceramic, making it denser and less porous. It is what? A form of ceramic tile called porcelain is burned at a temperature higher than regular ceramic, making it denser and less porous.

Ideal for:

Use porcelain tiles with impact and stain resistance for backsplashes, floors, and walls. It comes in a broad range of designs and is simple to clean.


However, DIYers sometimes purchase the incorrect setting substance, which is needed to attach non-porous materials. To be sure you’re using the proper glue, check with the manufacturer.

ProTip Takeaway: Porcelain has a transitional look that blends well with various types of interior design.

3. Glass

Glass is manufactured from tiny bits of glass that are sold individually or as mosaics, occasionally combined with various kinds of tile over a mesh basis.

It is what? thin glass tiles with a mesh backing that are offered singly or as a mosaic, occasionally alongside other ideas of tiles.

Finest for:

Walls and backsplashes are the best places for colorful, reflecting, easy-to-clean glass tile. Certain glass tile has a rating for usage as flooring. Glass tile has a lot of “wow” effect because of its huge variety of hues.


However, installing it may be costly and challenging. The glue may be seen through the tile since it is translucent. Unless you’re really competitive, it’s challenging for a DIYer to produce results that seem professional.

ProTip Takeaway: Instead of doing it yourself, get a professional flooring specialist to install glass tile for you.

4. Cement

What exactly is it? Cement tiles, often known as encaustic or Cuban tiles in the United States, are primarily handcrafted of natural materials and have dramatic designs.


However, because they are more expensive and less popular than other tiles, your installer may be unfamiliar with them. Furthermore, cement tiles are prone to etching by acid or severe detergents and must be sealed during installation and resealed on a regular basis.

Takeaway: The cement must be sealed during installation and resealed on a regular basis.

5. Natural Stone

Natural stone pieces such as granite, slate, travertine, marble, onyx, sandstone, and others are used. Natural stone is carved into uniform, thin bits. Stone tile has a unique, one-of-a-kind appearance. Simple to maintain and stunning to look at. What exactly is it? Stone tile has a rich, one-of-a-kind aesthetic because it is made out of thin, regular pieces of genuine stone—granite, slate, travertine, marble, onyx, and sandstone, to name a few.

Use stone on walls, backsplashes, and floors. Use granite tiles instead of a slab to achieve the look of a granite countertop for less.


However, most stone tiles can be harmed by water, color, or acid, so plan extra care.

Pro Tip Takeaway: Seal when installed and reseal every ten years.

Natural Stone Tile

Top-Notch Countertops And Floors

Tile worktops and flooring are both put to the test by Consumer Reports. Only vinyl performed better in our testing for flooring. SnapStone Beige is the best-performing tile. It fared extremely well against wear and tear as well as against stains, scratches, and fading. It did a mediocre job at repelling dents, though.

Ceramic and porcelain tile came in second place to quartz and granite in our testing for kitchen countertops, but at $5 per square foot, it was by far the most affordable option. Although it struggled to resist heat and stains, it excelled in slicing and chopping.


Whatever tile you decide on, don’t forget to have a professional install it for you. Also, think about which tile would be ideal for you.

To determine a tile’s cost, and maintenance needs, and evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each tile, it is always wise to do some study.