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Tiled floors for indoor and outdoor areas at home

Ceramic tiles are ideal for both indoor and outdoor flooring that needs to cope with hard use and be easy to clean. They are more hard-wearing and easier to maintain than natural stone.

The huge range of colours and patterns available means you can choose exactly what you want to suit your taste, the room or rooms to be tiled, and your budget.

Types of Tile

Ceramic tiles come both glazed and unglazed in a wide range of colours and patterns. You should seal unglazed tiles with a ceramic tile sealer before walking on them.

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There are also vitrified (also known as full-bodied) tiles, which are stronger than glazed tiles.

Vitrified porcelain tiles come in a 'natural' finish or a glossier polished finish.

They are the same colour all the way through, so unlike glazed tiles, if they're chipped or in very heavy wear situations, they'll retain their original colour.

Where to use tile floors

Ceramic tiles are perfect for kitchens, bathrooms, laundries and hallways, where they can take the punishment and come up shining.

But their use isn't limited to these areas. Their hard-wearing and decorative surface is suitable for almost any room.

They are also great outdoors for patios and decks, or in old-fashioned patterns for verandah floors.

If tiles are to be used outdoors, or in wet areas such as bathrooms or laundries, make sure they are treated with a non-slip finish.

Patterns in tile floors

Like parquetry and vinyl and cork€ flooring (link to vinyl flooring article), you can create€ unique patterns by combining different sizes, shapes and colours of tiles.

These patterns can be as bold and imaginative, or as subtle as you like.

DIY tiled floor or get a contractor?

It's relatively simple to lay a tiled floor, if you start with a perfectly level underfloor and make sure you have all the equipment you need before you start.

For best results in an older place where the floor might need levelling, or in tricky areas, talk to a flooring contractor.

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