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Mar 4, 2020

Ferreiras: Where Can I Use This Tile? Wall Tile vs. Floor Tile.

Where can I use this tile? Wall Tile vs. Floor Tile.

The basics to remember are that floor tiles can be used on both floor and wall applications, whereas wall tiles cannot be used on the floor. Why? Well because a wall tile does not have to withstand any pressure, as people do not walk on walls – we hope . As tiles are manufactured for different purposes, it is vital that you advise your salesperson where you intend to use the tile.

Spotting the difference between a floor tile and wall tile is not as basic as the application rule, and you would be surprised that certain decorative, colourful and glossy tiles are actually floor tiles. If you want to be more independent in your tile shopping experience here are a few things you can look out for but always double-check your selection before making the final purchase as these points are not cast in stone.

Anatomy of a Wall Tile – the basics… (ensure that you shop at Ferreiras)

  • What colour is the body of the tile? If it is white or red – it is a wall tile.
  • What thickness is the tile? If the tile is very thin – it is a wall tile.
  • What does the label say, Porcelain or Ceramic? If it says Porcelain then it is a floor and wall tile. Side note: Not all Ceramic tiles are only wall tiles.
  • Is the tile 3D? If so, it is a wall tile.

So why do people put floor tiles on the wall? Quite simply because they like the look of the tile, they want to create a seamless look between the wall and floor tile or the floor tile is used on the wall in a decorative sense to create a feature in combination with a wall tile.

Now for the technical part – for those that are interested: Why is it that some tiles are classified as wall tiles?

The most commonly used tile technical characteristics are “Scratch Hardness” and “Resistance to Abrasion”. The first term refers to the resistance the tile surface has to cuts and scratches that can deteriorate the surface especially when the surface of the tile is bright, shiny and a single colour. Wall tiles have a low “scratch hardness”. The latter of the terms refers to the resistance the surface has to wear caused by movement over the tile, such as you walking over them with shoes, or dragging furniture over the tiles. The testing method for resistance to abrasion is known as PEI, no not the pastry you eat, it is the Porcelain Enamel Institute Method, a wall tile has a low PEI rating.

Now that you have the Wall Tile basics – visit a Ferreiras Showroom to see if you can spot the difference.


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