Finish off your garage floor with a stylish look that’s sure to please you. While most garages have simple concrete, your clients don’t have to settle for anything so basic. A growing trend among homeowners is tile flooring that can safely be used underneath car tires. It’s an upgraded look and feel, and it’s very easy to clean and care for. If you have clients who are dreaming of improving their garage with improved floors, then here’s what they should know.
Proper Installation is Key
The floor must be properly smoothed out before installation can begin. If one tile sits higher than another, then it may be subject to greater pressure from cars, jacks, and creepers. Take great care to ensure that the tiles corners are perfectly level with each other without any raised areas.
The key to putting tiles down in a garage floor is eliminating the air pockets between the floor and tile backing. After applying thinset to the floor, another layer should also be applied to the back of each individual tile. This takes out the air pockets, stabilizes the floor, and allows people to eliminate cracking.
It’s also recommended that installers maintain very narrow grout lines of 3/16-inch or less. This adds stability to the edges of the tiles and makes it easier to roll items across the floor. Larger tiles are just as stable as the smaller ones, and you’ll minimize the labor by reducing the number of grout lines.
Temperature Won’t Matter
People in cold climates often worry about the tiles cracking as garages see lower temperatures. However, one of the great features of porcelain tiles is that they have less than a .05% absorption rate. Choose a tile with a PEI rating four or five to avoid damaged tiles. Water won’t penetrate the tiles, so there’s no concern about freezing cycles leading to cracks. However, garages in cold climates will still present some challenges that installers should be aware of.
The first is that an unheated garage will have regular freezing and thawing cycles that can eventually lead to damage as the floor expands and contracts. You can easily prevent cracks by using a special latex additive in your thinset. The latex will make the adhesive more flexible so that it can effectively protect tiles from freezing cycles in the concrete.
The second tip is to seal the grout or use one that won’t require sealers. Sealing the grout will keep water from getting down below the tiles and causing them to pop out of position. The sealer will also prevent stains from setting into the grout.
They’re Surprisingly Strong!
A common concern about porcelain tiles is that they’ll break in a garage. However, porcelain is stronger than you might think. It has a high density level, so you can easily drive over it, roll tool boxes across it, and even put jacks and car ramps on the tile. The trick is to ensure that there are no air pockets below the tiles in order to maintain the density and keep the tiles intact. People have dropped tools on their tile floors without them breaking or cracking.
Look at the Coefficient of Friction
In addition to hardness ratings, porcelain tiles also come with a C.O.F. rating. Tiles that are rated between .055 and .059 are comparable to bare wet concrete in terms of traction. As the rating rises above .060, the tiles are considered more slip resistant and will meet OSHA standards for use in a garage. If the ratings aren’t clearly rated on the tiles, then check with the manufacturer to obtain this information.
Stains are Not A Problem
If you’re worried about stains, then you’ll be relieved to know that porcelain tiles are highly resistant to discolorations. This is because they’re basically impervious to water intrusion. Liquids will bead up on the top rather than soaking in, so you can just wipe them away. It also won’t fade in the sunlight, and that’s good news if you tend to leave your garage doors open when the weather is nice.
Choose the Best Size and Color
There’s an incredible range of sizes and colors available in tile floors. This allows the homeowners to choose a color and style that will complement the garage and make it more attractive. People generally go with one-foot square tiles, but you can also stock two-foot square tiles that will make a small garage feel larger.
Versatile Enough for the Garage
Whether your garage is reserved for the car or used for general storage, the porcelain tile will make this space more pleasant and functional. It’s easy to clean up the dirt and debris that your car drags in. If you’re using the space as a workshop, you’ll be pleased with how quick it is to sweep up sawdust from a tile floor. It’s easy to roll wheeled containers across the floor if your garage is an extension of your storage areas. You’ll enjoy the space more, and you’ll also boost the value of your property.
Fast Cleaning and Easy Maintenance
Concrete is more likely to absorb stains than porcelain, and it’s difficult to sweep due to the porous nature of the stone. No matter how many times you sweep over rough concrete, you’ll still pull up more dust and dirt. One of the best features of tile floors is that the dirt sits right on top of the surface. You can sweep it up quickly and rest assured that it’s clean. If there are marks or water rings, then you can mop it to make the floor look its best again.
Let Nalboor Tiles Help You Decide
Before you decide on any flooring material, consider the many benefits of porcelain tile. You can make your garage shine and turn it into a source of joy. You’ll appreciate how easy it is to clean, and it will look great for years to come. The right tile will be slip resistant, and it can last for decades when properly installed. Talk to a Nalboor Tiles representative to assist you in deciding which kind of tiles you’d like to stock for your next building project. Call 305-501-4548 to place your bulk order today. You can also contact us online.