In the flooring world, there is often some serious confusion on the terms porcelain and ceramic. Not just confusion about what the terms actually mean but about the best instances to use each type of tile and what they look best with. But fear not, we are here to clear all of that up!
Ceramic and porcelain are actually quite similar compounds as both of them come from clay and both are then mixed with various other elements and minerals.
The term porcelain actually dates back to the 13th century. While we won’t bore you with the Greek definitions of the words and how they were passed down into their modern form, we will give you a difference between traditional types of porcelain.
You see whereas European Porcelain is simply the lightest in color regardless of quality, American Porcelain must be the highest quality possible.
And before we continue on the conversation any further, it is important to note that there is a very marked difference between certified and uncertified porcelain tile.
If the porcelain tile is uncertified is can literally be any kind of ceramic tile without regard to quality standards or any sort of craftsmanship.
However, the tiling companies got tired of confusion and created a list of guidelines for porcelain to be considered “certified”
The first thing that the certify is the water absorption rate, even giving you a scale with recommended locations for each level of impermeability.
The second and final part of the certification is that they must have a seal of approval from the Porcelain Tile Certification Agency, which currently only around 30 manufactures have earned.