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When it comes to buying tiles, there would a lot of jargon or technical terms that would be thrown at us. These can often be very confusing, even for the best of persons. However, understanding these are important and can help you make the right decision. Following are some of the important tile terms that one would frequently come across:
- Digital tiles: Digital tiles are simply put, a new style of printing tiles. Tiles, essentially, have two parts, the body and the surface. This surface, can now be “digitally printed” to create high-resolution graphics and images on tile surface. The advantage of digital printing is that it allows tile manufacturers to come up with a wide range of prints, color and designs on the tiles, in a short time.
- Double Charged tile: These are tiles which have an extra layer of print or pigment on top, usually 3-4 mm. thick. This is done by passing the tiles through a press. The result is that tiles are generally able to withstand wear and tear much better and hence are more durable. Such tiles are more suited for high traffic areas like showrooms, living rooms, lobbies etc.
- Full body tiles: Very simply put, full body tiles have the tile design and color running through the tile body, hence any scratches or dents on the tile surface still does not show up. The entire tile body is a uniform mass, of the same color and texture. These tiles are best used in very high traffic areas like retail outlets, showrooms, offices, malls, airports etc. These tend to be much more expensive though compared to the regular tiles.
- Highlighters: As the name indicates, these tiles are used to “highlight” or prominently display a design pattern or idea. These are normally used in a small part of the overall bathroom or wall tile set-up, to distinctly show an area. Using the right highlighter tools can really add some class and grace to your rooms!
- Rectified tiles: These tiles have undergone an additional level of processing in manufacturing to ensure that tiles have perfect-straight edges and uniform dimensions. With this, the gaps between adjacent tiles tend to be very narrow, which enhances the look of the tiles when laid. They however tend to be more expensive compared to the non-rectified tiles.
- Tile quality: Typically, tiles are made in 3 qualities: premium, commercial and semi-premium. Premium grade tiles are the best quality ones, and have no defect. Commercial tiles, on the other hand, have a very minor defect, hence they are sold at rates substantially cheaper to the premium tiles. Semi-premium tiles, offer price and quality, between the premium and commercial tiles.
- Tile shade variation: There are bound to be shade differences between different batches of tiles. This is attributable to the manufacturing process of tiles. Hence it is advisable to use tiles from the same batch, for covering the same area. Tiles are typically graded according to the degree of shade variation between tiles of different boxes. The tiles that exhibit maximal difference in shade and design patter are called Random tiles. They are laid in a manner to give a very artistic appeal to the flooring.