Slate A Great Flooring Option

Slate, Slate sealer, ceramic tiles, hard surface, stone, marble, granite, travertine

Flooring is an integral part of the house, which can significantly affect its appearance. Hence, it is vital to select the right flooring option for your home, which can make it look more attractive and appealing. Among the various flooring options available, more and more people are opting for slate, for residential as well as commercial buildings. Owing to its versatility and aesthetic appeal, it is increasingly being used in interiors as well as exteriors. Not only is it a feasible flooring option, but is also a great option for the walls, ceilings and roofs.

Slate adds elegance and sophistication to an interior, which other flooring options cannot. This sturdy natural-stone flooring option is formed when minute particles of silt and clay bind under high pressure and temperature. Owing to this process, slate gets its monolithic and ultra-fine texture. It is generally gray in color, but can also have shades of blue or green on it. However, it is also available in other colors like purple, brown and white pink, among others. You can make use of slate’s different shades of color for creating unique designs for your flooring. Along with its diversity in colors, slate tiles are also found in varied shapes, thicknesses and finishes. You can combine these variable attributes to your advantage and come up with different flooring ideas for house.

In comparison to various other flooring options, slate is a more durable and long lasting material. Once installed, it can last for many years and you may not have to replace it with any other flooring; thus, proving cost advantage. Additionally, it also has low maintenance requirements, unlike some other flooring options such as hardwood flooring. Slate is also resistant to dirt, and requires regular mopping with mild detergent cleaning.

Slate, Slate sealer, ceramic tiles, hard surface, stone, marble, granite, travertine

The fine molecular structure of slate renders several advantages over other flooring options. Along with being tough, it is also resistant to moisture, which guarantees firm footing and avoids slipping or gliding. Owing to this, slate is a great flooring option for high traffic areas, or areas that are exposed to water, like hallways, porches, kitchen and bathrooms. In addition, this anti-stain flooring option is also bacteria and allergen resistant, thereby reducing the risk of diseases. To top it all, slate is quite affordable as compared to most of the other available flooring options, like marble and granite.

Due to the various advantages offered by it, slate proves to be a great flooring option that can enhance the appearance of any décor. However, an important thing which one should always keep in consideration is that the installation must be done in the right manner. If the installation is not done properly, flooring may be susceptible to breakage.

Since slate is a heavy natural stone, it needs to be installed correctly on a strong, solid subfloor instead of a flexible subfloor. Once properly installed, it will last for several years, without much maintenance requirements. Hence, if you are planning to install new flooring, you should opt for slate, which has become a preferred flooring choice of many people.

To seal use Slate Sealer by Glaze n Seal that offers unsurpassed low gloss protection for slate, quarry, tile, and other dense tile. This easy to apply, fast drying, non-yellowing acrylic provides a barrier against oil, water, based stains, acids, and efflorescence indoors and outdoors. With excellent UV and abrasion resistance.

Copyright © 2010

Step by Step How to Install Tile

ceramic bathroom tiles, stainless steel tiles, mosaic tiles, Glass Tile, Metal Tile, Tile Trims, Ceramic tile, Shower Tile, Flooring Tile, Los Angeles Tile, stone, Porcelain, marble, Granite, install tile, Counter top tile, Bathroom Tile

Difficulty of Installation

When using the thinset method in residential areas, installing ceramic tile is rather simple. To put it in better perspective, it is easier to install than wood or vinyl sheet goods and slightly more difficult than vinyl tile.

Actually, the subfloor preparation, layout, and installation is very similar to that of vinyl tile.

The only major difference is grouting. With proper planning and a little common sense, practically anyone can install ceramic tile using the thinset method.

Steps of Installation

If you are installing a new underlayment, it’s recommended that you staple polyethylene plastic on top of the subfloor before you install the underlayment to ensure protection from water penetrating down to the subfloor.

Subfloor Preparation

This is the most important step in accomplishing
a satisfactory installation.

The subfloor must be structurally sound, rigid, smooth, flat, and free of curing compounds and waxy or oily films.

Floor Layout

In this step, the room is squared off and measured, and the chalk lines are snapped. Once the chalk lines are in place, the installer will verify the floor in both directions to balance the room.

Preparing the Tiles

Slight tone variations are to be expected from tile to tile. A good installer will prevent this from becoming a problem by mixing the tiles from several cartons before installation.

This blends the tiles together, and any shade variations add to the character of the floor.

Spreading the Thinset

Using the chalk lines as a guide, the installer will begin applying the thinset in one section at a time.

He will spread one coat using the flat side of the trowel and then immediately come back with a second coat, using the notched side of the trowel.

Laying the Tiles

The tiles are then placed one at a time in the thinset by twisting and pressing while allowing appropriate spacing for the grout.

A straight edge or spacers may be used to align the tile.


The installer will generally begin grouting the following day. It is important to allow the thinset enough time to set up before applying the grout.

The grout is applied over one small section at a time and is spread by means of a rubber float or a squeegee.

Pulling the grout firmly over the surface will both push the grout into the joints and clean off most of the excess grout.

Then the tile is rinsed using a damp sponge. Very little water is applied.

After approximately ten minutes the surface of the tile is cleaned again with a damp sponge (even drier this time), or on some shiny tiles, just buff with a dry towel.

Step 1. – Use the grouting float diagonally across the tiles at an angle to prevent dragging grout from joints.

Step 2. – Clean float in clear water. Change water in pails often to keep clean.

Step 3. – Go back over grout holding float at a 90 degree angle.

Step 4. – Use damp (not wet) sponge to clean grout off tile surface. Clean sponge and keep repeating until section is clean. NOTE: Always use clean cool water.

Step 5.- Buff film off tile with a soft towel after grout dries to the touch.

Step 6. – Keep people off newly grouted floor for about 12-24 hours.


It is important for you and your customers to understand that the installation of ceramic tile is not a one-day job, like most carpet and vinyl installations.

Scheduling a time for the installation becomes much easier when everyone involved knows how long the job will take.

A. Estimated Timetable

The following guide is an approximate time table for completion of a job.

50 sq. ft. and under One Day
51-175 sq. ft Two Days
76-350 sq. ft Three Days
351-500 sq. ft Four Days
each additional 200 sq. ft Add one day

The installation of tile takes longer because the installer must wait 10-14 hours before grouting. If he tries to rush it, he will break the bond between the tile and mortar.

The moisture from the mortar may also wick into the grout, causing discoloration.

B. Substrate

Preparing a good substrate is the most important step to insure a beautiful installation. There are six general requirements.

1. New concrete subfloors must be left to cure 28 days before tiling.

2. All floor and wall substrates must be rigid.
Excessive movement in the substrate may crack or loosen the tile and grout.

3. All substrates, particularly floors, must be structurally sound. Rotting or deteriorating subfloors must be corrected prior to installing
ceramic tile.

4. All substrates should be flat. The ceramic tile will contour to minor subfloor irregularities.

5. Any oil or wax on the substrate needs to be removed to assure strong adhesion.

6. The substrate must be free of curing compounds.

C. Suitable Subfloors

All subfloors that are structurally sound and free of excessive movement are suitable for tiling over.

They include:
1. Concrete
2. Terrazzo or natural stone
3. Fiber cement boards
4. Cement backer boards
5. Non-cushioned vinyl and linoleum
(Properly prepared)
6. Properly supported 1-1/4” plywood

D. Unsuitable Subfloors

These subfloors are not suitable because they tend to flex, expand and contract, or warp.

Any excessive movement will loosen the tile and pop the grout.

These subfloors must be replaced or covered with a suitable underlayment.

1. Perimeter installed or heavily cushioned vinyl and linoleum

2. Composite woods

    a. Particle board

    b. Flake board

    c. Chipboard

    d. OSB (Orient Strand Brand)

    e. Luan

    f. Strip wood

E. Selecting the Right Installation Method

Caution: Poorly prepared substrates and the use of improper setting materials are the cause of practically all major installation failures.

Certain types of substrates and job conditions require special treatment. These treatments are neither expensive, time consuming, nor complicated.

To ignore or deviate from them would be the equivalent of playing Russian roulette.

Installation materials described

• Floor set mortar is a promotionally priced thinset packaged in 50 lb. bags, in gray and white colors. It should be used only over clean, solid, unsealed concrete that is fully

• Fortified Thinset mortar is a special formula of thinset mortar enhanced by pre-blended latex additives to ensure the proper mixture for ceramic installations over concrete. This product comes in 50 lb. bags and covers approximately 50-65 sq. ft. per bag.

• Multi-Set is a specially formulated premium thinset that has a flexible acrylic additive. The acrylic gives the mortar flexibility and additional bonding strength. The flexibility is required when going over substrates that may experience minor movement. The additional adhesion is needed when setting tile over hard-to-bond surfaces, such as plywood and terazzo floors. Multi-Set is packaged in 50 lb. bags in gray and white colors. (When installing tile over a plywood substrate, we always recommend installing cement backer-board first for a more secure installation).

Coverage per bag is approximately 50 to 60 square feet per bag, depending on trowel size.

F. Special Preparation Requirements

• Wood subfloors – must be covered with one of the following overlays for additional support.

1. A cement backer board

2. 1-1/4”-inch plywood – acceptable when using MULTISET 917 Thinset.

3. Wire mesh and mortar system (mud job) – minimum thickness of 1-1/2” (mud only)

Note: We recommend the cement backer board. It is much easier and less costly to install than the wire mesh and mortar coat. It is also much more stable over plywood base floors.

• Non-porous – subfloors include sealed concrete, terrazzo, or any other non-absorptive surface. For extra bonding strength and a more successful installation, use Multi-Set Thinset.

• Vinyl over subfloors – require the use of a cement backer board and Multi-Set. Interflex or perimeter glued floors must be removed.

• Although the moisture in wet areas will not affect the tile itself, it will effect certain substrates. If drywall or plywood are used in wet areas, they will eventually buckle or deteriorate, causing the tile to fall off. To prevent this we recommend a cement backer board as a substrate. It was developed for wet areas.

• When going over floors, the backer board is adhered first with thinset and secured with nails or screws recommended by the manufacturer. It is necessary to cover the floor joints. The joints will be filled as the installer spreads the mortar and tapes with fiberglass mesh.

• Important: Nail or screw cement backer board using 1-1/4”-long (minimum) galvanized (to prevent rusting) ring-shanked nails or screws. Space fasteners every 6” on center.

Step 1 Apply Multi-Set Thinset to a fully adhered and structurally stable base floor with a 1/4” x 1/4” notched trowel.

Step 2 Cut panels by scoring and snapping like drywall. Use carbide tipped scoring tool.

Step 3 Place panels over thinset while it is wet. Stagger end joints and fasten on all marks for screws and on and between marks for nails.

Step 4 Fill joints with Multi-Set and cover all joints with Cement board Tape.

Step 5 Apply Multi-Set with 1/4” x 1/4” notched trowel to set tile

• Note: Thinset mortar must be given 12 to 24 hours to set up before grouting.

G. Substrate Repairs

• Stress cracks – Tile should never be installed directly over cracks.

Stress cracks are generally caused by seasonal movement and will continue to open and close. If the tile is installed over a crack, it will also crack as the substrate moves.

A crack suppression membrane (C-Cure Curelastic 949) may be used to bridge the stress crack.

• All minor cracks must be filled with thinset mortar prior to continuing with the installation. Back filling with the flat side of the trowel during the spreading process is the simplest way of correcting minor cracks.

• Irregular Substrates – Very few substrates are perfectly flat, level, or plumb. Generally, the installer will have to touch up the surface before and during tiling.

• Minor high and low spots are smoothed easily with thinset in very little time and at no extra cost.

• Deep depressions over 1/4” sometimes may be patched with a mixture of thinset and a latex additive. Additional floor preparation cost may apply.

• If the substrate’s surface is marked with mounds larger than 1/4”, get your manager involved so that he can consult with your tile contractor for pricing.

• Note: Ceramic tile will contour to the existing floor condition in the same way vinyl and carpet do. Do not over-promise floor corrections to your customers who are buying ceramic tile. Remember, ceramic tile does not level a customer’s floor.

H. Cement Backer Boards

• The cement backer board is an all-purpose underlayment that was originally developed for use on walls. It is a lightweight portable cement slab that requires no curing time and is used extensively in wet areas because it is not affected by moisture. It is also used to cover wood subfloors. Its strength and rigidity reduce the movement inherent in wood. Therefore, it helps protect the tile from damage.

• The backer board sheets look and handle like gypsum board. They are 1/4” or 1/2” thick and come in 4’ x 4’ or 3’ x 5’ panels. They are produced using reinforced fiber to prevent breakage or crumbling when handled. The backer boards also require no special skills to install. They score and snap as easily as gypsum board.

• When going over floors, the backer board is adhered first with thinset and secured with nails or screws recommended by the manufacturer. It is necessary to cover the floor joints.

The joints will be filled as the installer spreads the mortar and tapes with fiberglass mesh.

• Important: Nail or screw cement backer board using 1-1/4”-long (minimum) galvanized (to prevent rusting) ring-shanked nails or screws. Space fasteners every 6” on center.

Step 1. – Apply Thinset to a fully adhered and structurally stable base floor with a 1/4” x 1/4” notched trowel.

Step 2. – Cut panels by scoring and snapping like drywall. Use carbide tipped scoring tool.

Step 3. – Place panels over thinset while it is wet. Stagger end joints and fasten on all marks for screws and on and between marks for nails.

Step 4. – Fill joints with Thinset and cover all joints with Durock Tape.

Step 5. – Apply Thinset with 1/4” x 1/4” notched trowel to set tile.

• Note: Thinset mortar must be given 12 to 24 hours to set up before grouting.

I. Sound Reduction Systems Many multi-level buildings today require that a sound barrier be applied to the subfloor prior to tiling. This is particularly true with condominiums. You should always ask the customer to check the condominium association’s by-laws on sound reduction. Some customers may not be aware of these by-laws and risk having to replace a new job.

Four common sound reduction systems

1. With a combination of cement backer boards and mat, the mat is adhered to the subfloor and the cement backer board is adhered to the mat.

2. A mortar type system containing sound deadening materials is floated on the subfloor and left to cure overnight. Once cured, it serves as a base to spread your thinset

3. Cork is a thin, high density cork that is specially treated for use with ceramics. Although many contractors use it, because of its flexibility, the cork presents a higher risk for improper adhesion than the other systems.

4. Perlag Sound Reduction uses a mortar additive and does not raise the height of the installation as other sound reduction systems do.

Note: When using any sound reduction system, make sure the material you select has been tested and approved, and make sure you follow the manufacturer’s installation procedures.

J. Adhesives

There are two types of adhesives recommended for installing residential tiles: organic mastics and thinset mortars.

• Organic mastics are pastes similar to floor covering adhesives.

• Type I mastic is used for wet areas such as bath walls and countertops.

• Type II mastic is used on dry walls.

• Thinset mortar is a combination of sand and portland cement that is mixed with either water or latex. Thinset mortar is routinely used on floors when installing tile and concrete backer board.

• Note: Thinset mortar must be given 12 to 24 hours to set up before grouting

K. Grouts

Grout is a cement-based powder that is mixed with water to fill in the joints between the tiles. There are two basic types of grouts: unsanded and sanded.

• Unsanded grouts are used for wall tiles.

• Sanded grouts are used for floor tiles where the joints are 1/8” and larger.

• On wider joints, it is necessary that a sanded grout be used. The sand prevents the grout from shrinking and cracking during the drying process.

• Grouts come in a variety of colors with the standard size floor grout bag being 25 lbs.

• Grout joints in floor tiles should rarely be smaller than 3/16” because tiles vary slightly in size. The installer will not be able to keep a straight line if the grout is too narrow.

• The standard size grout joint for walls is 1/16″ wide

• Although all of our grouts are very dense and denser grouts resist staining, there is no such thing as a stain-proof grout. Do not oversell the product.

• Grouts in general are dense, polymer latex enhanced, and have a flexible formula. This customized mixture is clearly the best sanded grout available today.

L. Sealers

Sealers are used to protect some unglazed tiles from absorbing stains. There are several types of sealers; two of them are discussed below.

• Penetrating sealers are absorbed into the tile forming a stain-resistant shield just below the surface. Some penetrating sealers will darken or change the appearance of the tile. Resealing every 12-18 months is required with most penetrating sealers.

• Surface sealers are coated on the top of the tile forming a non-porous, stain-resistant barrier. The surface sealer will add a slight sheen. Resealing every 6-12 months is required with most surface sealers.

• Some unglazed tiles must be sealed with a penetrating sealer prior to grouting. This is particularly important when a dark-colored grout is being used with a light-colored tile. Naturally, this is to prevent the grout from staining the tile.

• Highly absorptive tiles such as handmade Mexican tiles need to be constantly sealed with either a penetrating, surface, or a permanent epoxy type finish. The permanent epoxy type finish is the best for this purpose,

• Note: None of the unglazed products in our line require a sealer, nor would they accept one. The porosity is so low that sealers would virtually peel off. They only require the damp mopping also used with glazed ceramic tile.

M. Floor Trim

The trim pieces serve two purposes. First, the beveled edge conceals the factory edge, thereby finishing off the job. Second, they protect the exposed edge of the tile from chipping. An example

of an area that requires a trim piece would be one where the tile meets a wood floor at a doorway. In this case some people use a marble threshold or vinyl cap.

• One of the most common types of trim used for residential floors is a marble threshold.

• Thresholds are used in doorways when making a transition from ceramic to another type of floor. Marble thresholds are common at bathroom doors.

• Bullnose (finished edge tile) is not produced by all manufacturers. When confronted with this situation, one of the following alternatives can be used:

Cut-tile base – The installer will cut the tile base from the field tile being used on the job. The tile’s factory edge, which is generally beveled, is always the exposed side.

Vinyl caps – These are vinyl trim pieces that come in a variety of colors made specifically for ceramic tile. They slip right over the exposed edge of the tile to give it a finished look.

Note: The vinyl caps may be used in many ways, including: To cap off the top of a cut-tile base. To cap off the edge of a floor tile next to carpet, wood and lower floor coverings like vinyl and vinyl tile

Large Vinyl Cap Use Large Vinyl Cap when installing ceramic tile over a wood subfloor or when using a cement backer board underlayment. It can be installed straight, on angles or used to contour to a free form.

Small Vinyl Cap Use Small Vinyl Cap when installing ceramic tile over concrete or on a wall as a baseboard. It can be installed straight, on angles, or used to contour to a free form.

Vinyl Stair Cap Use Nosing/Stair Vinyl Cap when a finished edge at step down or open stair is required. It may be used on both concrete and wood subfloors

Vinyl Reducer Use Reducer Vinyl Cap when a wider trim or more gradual reduction is needed. It can be used straight or on angles. It may be used with or without a cement backer board underlayment.


In this section we are going to cover the procedures for estimating the material needs and installation costs. Although some of the terminology and job requirements may be new to you, estimating for ceramic tile is no more difficult than for wood or vinyl. The key factors in figuring a job’s needs are the same, no matter what product you are installing. They are:

• taking proper measurements

• determining material and labor needs

• applying the costs

A. Facts About Estimating

1. Ceramic Tile is always ordered in full cartons.

When the square footage of the job is determined,

the salesperson must round it off to the next full


2. The square foot coverage per carton will vary from product to product. Once the tile is selected, the salesperson will refer to the specification area on the front of the board indicating square foot coverage per carton.

3. It is necessary to increase the square footage of a job in order to compensate for breakage and tile cuts. Add 10% for waste laying tile on a straight line pattern. Add 13% waste when laying a pattern on diagonal installation. This percentage is mandatory on each job.

4. After a job is complete, it is customary to leave the customer with several pieces of tile to assure a perfect match in the event future repairs are needed.

5. The trim pieces such as vinyl cap are ordered by the piece. Each vinyl piece comes 4 l/f.

6. Normal floor prep such as minor patching is considered part of the job and is not billed as an extra charge.

7. Other leveling of a floor is a chargeable labor item. Your installation contractor may need to see the job conditions prior to establishing the customer’s cost.

8. Most ceramic installers do not carry the tools necessary to stretch carpet. If the ceramic meets carpet in an area, the re stretch will be done by a carpet installer. This is called carpet finishing.


A. Square Footage Formulations

Multiply the length by width to calculate the square footage (S/F) of area.

2. Add 10% for waste laying tile on a straight line pattern. Add 13% waste when laying a pattern on diagonal installation.

3. Divide net S/F by S/F in box to determine the full and partial number of cartons.

4. Round off to the next full box for exact number of full cartons required.

5. Multiply the number of full cartons by S/F per box to determine the total S/F.

Example: Facts: Area is 20’ long and 15’ wide. Tile is packed 16.0 S/F to a carton.


1. 20’ x 15’ = 300 S/F of area.

2. 300 S/F x 1.10 = 330 S/F.

3. 330 divided by 16.0 S/F = 20.63 cartons.

4. Round off 20.63 cartons to 21 total cartons.

5. 21 cartons x 16.0 S/F = 336.0 total S/F.

B. Cut-tile Base Formulation

Length of wall divided by 2 = number of S/F

Example: 1 piece per standard 3 foot door.

C. Marble Thresholds Formulation

Measure linear feet of doorway and calculate in 3’-intervals. Each threshold comes 3’ (36”).

Note: Installer will take the larger size (36”) and cut to fit.

D. Measuring for Door Clearance Formulation

Door should clear height of two tiles. Lay one tile on top of another.

Example: Ceramic over concrete 1/2”, ceramic over wood 1”.

Note: Inform customers so that they may have the door cut prior to installation

E. Steps and Risers (Combined) Formulation

Multiply the width of steps x number of steps = linear feet

Example: 3 feet in width, 3 steps = 9 linear feet

F. Cement Backer Board & Seam Tape Formulation

Area S/F divided by 15 S/F or 16 S/F = number of sheets

Note: Sheet size is 3’ x 5’ x 1/2” = 15 S/F or 4’ x 4’ x 1/4” = 16 S/F

Use 1 bag of Multi-Set Thinset to adhere approximately 4 sheets of cement backer to plywood subfloor.

Use 1 roll of cement backer seam tape for 50 linear feet of cement backer board.

G. Thinset

1 bag of thinset will cover approximately 50 to 65 square feet of ceramic tile or cement backer board.

Example: 100 S/F ceramic tile installation, 2 bags needed.

Example 2: 100 S/F ceramic tile and cement backer board installation, 4 bags needed.

H. Grout

Check our Flooring Calculator

Coverage’s of grout will vary by size of tile. The coverage for a 25 lb. bag of either sanded or unsanded grout is:

Tile Size- Sanded Approx. Grout – Coverage Per Bag Tile Size- Unsanded Approx. Grout – Coverage Per Bag
2” x 2” 125 sq. ft. 4-1/4” x 4-1/4” 250 sq. ft.
4” x 8” (quarry) 50 sq. ft. 6” x 6” 300 sq. ft
6” x 6” (quarry) 55 sq. ft. 8” x 10 ” 525 sq. ft
8” x 8” (quarry) 60 sq. ft.
6” x 6” 65 sq. ft.
8” x 8” 80 sq. ft.
10” x 10” 90 sq. ft.
12” x 12” (Mexican) 30 sq. ft.
12” x 12” 125 sq. ft
13” x 13” 130 sq. ft
13” x 20” 170 sq. ft
16” x 16” 170 sq. ft
17” x 17” 190 sq. ft
18” x 18” 225 sq. ft

J. Floor/Wall Adhesive 1 – 3-1/2 gallon pail of adhesive will cover approximately 130 sq. ft. of ceramic tile.

For more information visit our web site at

Important Links about our Ceramic Tiles

Step by Step Tile InstallationCeramic Tile Flooring Care and MaintenanceCeramic Installation Guidelines

Solutions for Small Kitchens

Kitchen remodeling, bathroom remodeling, ceramic tiles, Hardwood floor. Laminate flooring, stone, marble, granite, travertine

Many homeowners face the problem of not having enough space in their kitchens. Due to the shortage of space, one may either collide with things kept in the kitchen or step on someone else’s toe while trying to reach something. Moreover, one does not even feel like cooking in such a small space. Additionally, one also has to adjust various kitchen items in the tiny space, making it cluttered and untidy.

In case you also have a small kitchen and face such problems daily, there are certain useful steps that can help you overcome space constraint. Foremost, you can make use of various designing tips to create an illusion of space. An easy way of achieving this is through proper lighting, such as, take measures to maximize any natural light by keeping the blinds up and curtains back. In case you wish to add more lights, but do not want to take up any valuable space, you can install lights under the cabinet. Apart from this, you can also use light colored walls, curtains, blinds and cabinets, to make the room look more open.

Kitchen remodeling, bathroom remodeling, ceramic tiles, Hardwood floor. Laminate flooring, stone, marble, granite, travertine

You must also ensure maximum use of available space in a proper manner. Foremost, you should take a look around your kitchen and sort out things as per the frequency of their use. Things that you do not use frequently like juicer or food processing machine, can be removed from the kitchen and stored somewhere else, such as the store room or garage. The next thing that you need to focus upon is the arrangement of things, such as you should keep the cooking utensils and oven mits near the stove. You must keep all the necessary and most used items in an easily accessible place, so that one does not collide with other things or people.

You always have the option of arranging various kitchen items in cabinets that can easily accommodate numerous things. However, if the cabinet is not large enough to solve the space problem, you can install lazy susans and dividing trays in these cabinets. This is also an effective solution in case one is not able to maintain different cabinets for specific group of items. Incorporating ample storage facility is probably the most effective and easiest way of overcoming space problem in small kitchens. Besides, you can even opt for hang up pots and pans that empties a lot of space in the cabinets.

Apart from this, you can also have deeper counters as these not only increase work space, but can also accommodate more items. Additionally, to minimize the use of space, you can select drop table, small sized round table or built-in counter along the wall. It is always advisable to install a large kitchen sink, as it is very convenient and suitable for washing pots and pans.

With the advancement in technology, now you have access to various compact and space saving appliances. Numerous brands are designing products for small kitchens, such as microwaves that can be hung underneath cabinets. You also have the option of choosing refrigerators that are 24 inches deep instead of 30 inches deep.

Making use of these simple measures can help you overcome the problem associated with small kitchens.

Copyright © 2010

Ceramic Tiles are Different from Porcelain Tiles

ceramic bathroom tiles, stainless steel tiles, mosaic tiles, Glass Tile, Metal Tile, Tile Trims, Ceramic tile, Shower Tile, Flooring Tile, Los Angeles Tile, stone, Porcelain, marble, Granite, install tile, Counter top tile, Bathroom Tile

Amongst the numerous flooring options available, tiles are probably the most preferred choice of homeowners. Tiles are versatile flooring options that suit preferences and budget of almost every homeowner. The availability of a myriad of choices such as ceramic, cork, laminate, and slate tile flooring sometimes make it difficult for homeowners to make the right pick. Homeowners often get confuse between ceramic and porcelain tiles, which are somewhat similar to each other but not same.

Ceramic and porcelain tiles differ from one another right from their manufacturing process as well as the material used for fabricating them. Ceramic tiles are made using mixture of both red and white clay, which lend them a typical terracotta color. The ceramic tiles can however be layered with colors; as a result of which these are available in an array of attractive colors. However, in case the tiles chip or wear down, then the upper colored layer gets damaged and the original terracotta color gets exposed.

In contrast, the porcelain tiles are made using porcelain clays that are fired at a very high temperature, much higher than ceramic tiles. As a result, the porcelain tiles are much harder and denser in comparison to ceramic tiles. Additionally, the porcelain tiles are smoother in texture and are also not as porous as ceramic tiles. Since the entire depth of the porcelain tile is colored; hence, even if the tiles chip or wear down, the color will never wear off. In terms of durability and permeability, porcelain tiles score over ceramic tiles as the former are more resistant to moisture than the latter.

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On the basis of wear and tear resistance, porcelain tiles are more resistant to scratches and cracks as these are denser and less porous than ceramic tiles. Since ceramic tiles are more vulnerable and chip & wear down easily; hence these are generally preferred indoors. These can however be used outdoors, but only the frost-proof and unglazed tiles, which also have a low absorption rating. The ceramic tiles are easy to maintain, resistant to chemicals, fire and stains, and are also less expensive than the porcelain tiles.

Better resistance to moisture, wear and tear, along with low absorption rating make porcelain tiles suitable for outdoors as well as indoors. Porcelain tiles are highly durable & strong, and can easily withstand high foot traffic. These tiles are almost impervious as these are less porous tiles with water absorption rate of less than 0.5%. Owing to this, these are generally used outdoors, especially for pool decks and sidewalks. Moreover, porcelain tiles are frost-resistant, making them ideal for cold weather.

ceramic bathroom tiles, stainless steel tiles, mosaic tiles, Glass Tile, Metal Tile, Tile Trims, Ceramic tile, Shower Tile, Flooring Tile, Los Angeles Tile, stone, Porcelain, marble, Granite, install tile, Counter top tile, Bathroom Tile

Although both, ceramic tiles and porcelain tiles, are popular among homeowners as these add to the beauty and elegance of any place; these differ in terms of durability, hardness, and wear & tear resistance. Hence, depending upon your requirements, you need to choose wisely between the two. Furthermore, you can even take help of the PEI ratings to adjudge the suitability of tiles for particular uses.

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Basement flooring options

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Choosing the right flooring for your home is vital, but selecting right ‘basement flooring’ is all the more important. When it comes to selecting the appropriate flooring for your basement, it is important to take into consideration all the challenges, especially that of moisture and flooding. Basements generally have high moisture content, which can actually damage the installed flooring. Hence, before you choose any basement flooring option, you need to figure out an alternative for the problem of moisture.

Other than this many basements face the problem of flooding, and there are very few flooring options that can withstand the damages caused by it. Hence, it is advisable to eliminate this problem before you spend money on installing your basement floor.

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Basements are generally used for the purpose of storage, hence are not accessed too frequently; though some homeowners also use it for other purposes. The use of basement is an important factor in deciding the right flooring option. If your basement is relegated to a storage area only, then you can select concrete flooring. It is the most common flooring option chosen by many homeowners because of its high durability. Concrete can easily withstand a lot of pressure and last for a lifetime. Though it is inexpensive compared to other flooring options, it lacks the aesthetic value. To overcome this, you can add thick carpeting over it, only if the basement is dry and has no moisture or flooding problem. Carpets are available in different sizes, colors, designs and patterns, which soften the look of the concrete floor basement.

If your basement is not merely a store room, then you can use ceramic tiles for flooring. A good alternative to concrete flooring; ceramic tiles are available in an assortment of colors and can make your basement aesthetically appealing. Moreover, tiles are resistant to moisture, thereby solving the problem of moisture as well.

Tiles are highly durable and easy to install, and can be done so without professional guidance. Another great option is laminate flooring, which beautifully imitates the hardwood flooring. The biggest advantage of using laminate flooring is its sound-resisting capability. This helps in reducing the noise coming from the basement, especially if you are using it as a game room or a ‘mini-theater’. Only precaution that you need to take is to use a high grade laminate that can withstand the traffic as well as moisture in the basement.

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You can even opt for engineered flooring which is made up of three to five layers of hardwood. Despite the layered construction, it is thin and you can add extra insulation if you want. It also offers higher resistance to moisture and traffic. Apart from this, you can even use rubber or foam mats. These mats are resistant to moisture and also have noise insulating capability which makes these a good choice for busy basements with high traffic and activity.

Hence, depending upon the use of the basement and budget, you can choose amongst any of these flooring options.

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