Here is the London Stone weekly interior stone blog, written by Jane Rode our in-house interior stone expert
The most common questions asked in a natural stone tile showroom are ‘will it stain?’, ‘what about the maintenance?’, and ‘how does natural stone compare to ceramic tiles’? To iron out some question marks on the topic, I’ve made a quick comparison between the three different materials.
Ceramic tiles easily chip and do not have the great heat-retaining qualities of natural stone tiles. But they are cheap to install and are virtually maintenance-free. Due to the delicate nature of material, ceramic tiles are often made in small size formats.
Porcelain tiles are more expensive than ceramic tiles, but are harder-wearing and often even frost resistant, and so they can be used outdoors as well. Some porcelains can be very expensive (in some cases many times that of natural stone), but require very little maintenance.
Natural Stone is by far the best investment for your home out of the three materials, and will generally outlive the other materials. In terms of maintenance – provided installed correctly – natural stone requires no more attention or care than you would give your household carpet! Naturally, you wouldn’t pour wine or acid over your carpet expecting it to ever be the same, and the same goes for natural stone interior tiles. As with your carpet, regular cleaning will enhance the look and prolong the life-time of natural stone, and if sealed correctly it will definitely not stain as badly as your carpet! Red wine spills is a common query, and our response is that provided the stone is sealed with an impregnating sealant (we recommend the leading sealant Dry Treat Stain-Proof, which will provide you with superior protection up to 15 years) you simply mop it up and carry on. There is also such a wide range of stone suitable for interior use. Limestone, Slate, basalt, marble and granite tiles are all suitable for use in the home.
In addition, the aesthetics and impressions of natural stone far supersede those of ceramic and porcelain, and have endless applications throughout your home, inside-out. My personal view is that with every piece of stone you acquire, you bank on a tiny bit of unique history; no single piece is identical to another