What Is Porcelain?

According to Wikipedia, Porcelain is a kind of ceramic material. It is highly used in pottery, tiles, and sanitary ware making industries. Pure and glazed white appearance with translucency and room for painting artistic designs permanently on the surfaces have made porcelain a favorite material for glazed and painted pieces of artistic creation.

The magic ingredients of Porcelain tiles are – 50% of Feldspar, 30-40% of white clay, 15% of Kaolin, and 15% of quartz, along with other fusible materials.

What Is Porcelain Making Process?

It is made by heating clay & other materials, including kaolin, in a kiln to temperatures between 1,200 and 1,400 °C (2,200 and 2,600 °F). Porcelain has much lower moisture and higher density than ceramic. For instance, a ceramic tile making material requires 300Kg/cm2, while porcelain bears 500Kg/cm2. Thus, high-temperature & pressure eliminate the formation of pores and cavities in the mass and grant porcelain an unbeatable toughness, strength, and translucence.

The production of porcelain products consists of the following different methods.

  • Forming: It contains traditional shaping techniques such as potter’s wheel, Molding, and some recent methods.
  • Glazing: It makes porcelain glazed and impermeable to liquids, dirt, and stain-resistant, and offer decorative appearance.
  • Decoration: Pigmentation by cobalt and copper minerals gives porcelain products a range of colors and hues to obtain a decorative look.
  • Firing: The raw material of the paste/body for porcelain making used to fire at high temperature in a kiln to give it a permanent shape, vitrify, and glaze the body.

Different Types of Porcelain Pottery

For the construction industry, the perspective of porcelain tiles is quite different from the pottery industry. There are four main categories of porcelain tiles manufacture and used in the tiles making industry today. Those are:

  1. Full Body: It made from selected materials, which blended, pressed, & fired to get the body of porcelain tiles. Technically, it provides good performance, but the absence of color effects/hues and somewhat repetitive look ruins the charm that comes with other types of porcelain tiles.
  2. Multiple Load: The raw material pressed twice and tiles contain two layers in the body. 25% of thickness comes from the noble categories of materials, while 75% of thickness comes from speckled materials. However, it has limited color choices and the absence of glaze results in less preferred tiles.
  3. Standard & Colored Body: The clay is blended and pressed to create textures on the surfaces, but results in the 2D design without details. However, it has an appealing look and affordable price tags.
  4. Twin Pressed: The first press of material contains varied colored mineral get compaction with innovative technologies. The second press compacts the glaze and body together and results in a 3D look with non-pressed decoration. It has high demand so high price.

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Physical Properties of Porcelain Tiles

Below are some distinct physical properties of the porcelain tiles.

Flexure Strength of Porcelain Tiles:

The breaking load, breaking strength, and modulus rupture of the porcelain tiles are great and equal to natural stones of many types. The average flexural strength of porcelain tiles is 40.0 MPa, while fracture strength is around 1.10 MPa.

Chemical Attack Resistance of Porcelain Tiles:

When the resistance of porcelain tiles against ferrous oxide red stain measured, a great variation found due to the surface treatments. It means surface polishing and treatments like coating, sealing, and glazing can improve the stain resistance of the tiles.

Resistance to Abrasion by Porcelain Enamel Institute (PEI):

PEI Grade No. of Rotations Applications
PEI Grade 0 100 RPM Only for wall tiles.
PEI Grade 1 150 RPM Where barefoot walking or soft shoes wear possible.
PEI Grade 2 600 RPM General residents with small to medium traffic.
PEI Grade 3 750-1500 RPM Residential and commercial spaces with light traffic.
PEI Grade 4 2000-6000 RPM Fully commercial areas with standard traffic.
PEI Grade 5 >12,000 RPM For heavy traffic.

Bearing the wears & tears by different level of traffic is an essential property of any flooring tile, and porcelain is excellent at it. Resistant to abrasion is a parameter to measure the hardness of tiles. The table above describes the specification of rotation per minute by a device/machine that rubs the tile surface after glazing. Many porcelain tile suppliers print the grades on the packing and also display all on their websites.

Frost Resistance:

Passed or Resistant  Test Temp  Types of Tiles
EN 202 Passed -5 to +5 for 50 freeze & thaw cycles Standard
ISO 10545-12 Passed -5 to +5 for 100 freeze & thaw cycles Better
ASTM C1026 Resistant -18 to +15 for 15 Freeze & Thaw cycles Superb

Water Absorption Rate by ANSI:

Water Absorption Rate Level of Density Types of Tiles
Greater  than 7.0 Low Density Non-vitreous
3.0 – 7.0 Medium Density Semi-vitreous
0.5 – 3.0 High Density Vitreous
Less than 0.5 Extremely Dense Impervious

The water absorption rate is indirectly indicating porosity and permeability of porcelain tiles here. To measure it, the tile is deepening in boiling water for some and measure the difference between weight before and after the water treatment.

The extremely dense quality of porcelain tiles is impervious and almost non-porous in one sense. Highly porous or low-density tiles are non-vitreous and hold maximum water during testing. Therefore, semi-vitreous porcelain tiles are good for interior flooring, while vitreous tiles are a better option for outdoor applications.

Porcelain Slip Resistance Rating:

Ramp test is a kind of slip-resistant test for the flooring tiles of any material. Porcelain is a flexible material to create slip-resistant surfaces during the manufacturing process. The “R”-rating is applied to measure the level of slip resistance. It starts with

  • R9 – for dry but high transition areas like offices and schools.
  • R10 – for wet areas like bath and toilets.
  • R11 – for high movement areas like halls and ramps.
  • R12 – for commercial kitchens.
  • R13 – for swimming pool decks and fish/meat processing units.

Chemical Properties of Porcelain Tiles

By comparison of chemical properties of porcelain crush with Portland cement, we can say porcelain can beat it in the high composition of silica content, low calcites, high to moderate aluminum and ferrous content render porcelain a better choice against plain cement plasters. Moreover, it is a superior selection against ceramic tiles by chemical composition.

Comparison – Porcelain Tiles vs. Natural Stone Tiles

Porcelain Tile Natural Stone Porcelain Tile Natural Stone
Less Porous More Porous Affordable freight Expensive freight
Low Absorption High Absorption Affordable labor Expensive labor
Small Water Stain Large Water Stain Feasible Installation Expensive Installation
High Resistance Low Resistance Stains less Stains more
Easy to cut Tough to cut Scratches less Scratches more
Less Thick Thicker Eco-friendly Eco-hazardous
Light framework Heavy framework Shorter lifespan Longer lifespan

In sum, porcelain tiles are a better choice than natural stone tiles.

Comparison – Porcelain Tiles vs. Ceramic Tiles

Ceramic Tile Porcelain Tile 
Semi-crystalline, amorphous, and inorganic material Crystalline, homogenous, and mix material
No complete vitrified, so porous and un-glazed Vitrified, so impermeable and glazed
Low-level of kaolin High kaolin
High water absorption Low water absorption
Affordable Expensive
Less durable Highly durable
Low, dense material, so easy to cut High dense material, so difficult to cut

In short, porcelain tiles are a better choice than ceramic tiles.

Benefits of Porcelain Tiles in Your Construction

Aesthetically pleasing:

asthetically pleasing

Porcelain is robust floor material when used different look-n-feel like the wood look, stone look, brick look, and abstract designs with innovative patterns and colors. You can mimic any texture, grains, veins, patterns, and hues of different colors, pouring your creativity in design a customized order.

Porcelain Paving Tiles AdCombat Wear & Tear:

We have seen porcelain tiles are compact, sturdy, durable, and cost-effective material to combat wears & tears by selecting appropriate grades.

Humidity, Water, and Liquid Resistance:

The porcelain manufacturing process involves high pressure and temperature to create a compact material with the lowest porosity; hence, permeability for water and other liquids. The low water absorption rate of porcelain renders it an ideal choice for outdoor applications, indoor wet areas like bath, toilet, and kitchen.

Stain Resistant:

Porcelain hardly interacts with different kinds of hazardous chemicals because it has high resistance against chemical attacks. Low porosity also provides resistance to staining with liquid spills. If you are quick to remove stain scientifically and tactfully, you will avert damages on the surface of tiles due to any kind of staining material. It makes it a superb choice for kitchen, patios, and dining hall like staining prone areas.

Fireproof Choice:

We know the manufacturing process of porcelain where the paste is getting high-temperature treatment. It means it is built-in fire-resistant material for tiles. You can apply it around a fireplace, fire features, and around kitchen countertop with stoves.

Versatile Tiles:

Porcelain tiles are available in various shapes, sizes, styles, and aesthetics to meet a variety of needs of decoration, flooring, wall cladding, and other applications in bespoke ways. You can create any design, layout, and pattern for your projects.

Hygienic Option:

Low porosity, water resistance, and easy to clean properties of porcelain tiles establish it a hygienic and safe product for your health when applied interior as well as exterior spaces.

Easy to Maintain:

Cleaning, washing, and replacement of porcelain tiles are quite easy tasks compared to stones and other materials in the construction industry. Therefore, low-maintenance attracts most of household and office bearers to go for porcelain.


Where to Get Reliable Supply of Porcelain Tiles in Your Vicinity?

World of Stones a  leading Procelain Pavers in United Starts.  It is a big hub of porcelain tiles for the right choice for you. It has a huge inventory of a variety of tiles in shapes and sizes. You can customize your order online and get delivery at the nearby place belong to its expanded distribution and supply network.

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