Floor Tile and Installation


Floor Ideas and Inspiration


Your floor layout could be plain or elaborate, your materials could be tradtitional or modern, your colors can be bold or subtle... which styles do you like best? Once you know your direction, we can help you choose the right products to bring your vision to life!

 

Visit our Patterns & Layout page for more ideas on interesting layout options.

 

Click through the gallery below to get some ideas and inspiration for floors.


Our Floor Installation Advice & In-Floor Heating


Cat on a heated floor. We stock Ditra Heat and Ico Cosy Floor heat kits in our Kent showroom, just a short drive from Renton, Auburn, and Federal Way
Create a cozy, stylish floor that will impress even the most cynical characters.

Thinking of installing the floor yourself? Stop by our store and chat with one of our knowledgeable staff members on the proper way to tile a floor. We cover everything from removing old flooring and preparing the space to choosing materials and mixing thinset. We can show you a variety of thinset, leveling, heating, and (of course) tile options for floor.

 

We can also teach you how to install a Ditra Heat system. We stock several programmable kits in various sizes, perfect for warming a bathroom, heating a kitchen, or keeping a basement cozy. We'll help you choose the right heating system for your floor and your needs.

Transitioning between Flooring Types


Schluter Schiene floor transition between wood and tile floor. We keep several Schluter trims in stock in our Kent showroom, just a short drive from Auburn, Renton, and Federal Way.

Is your tile floor meeting up to another flooring type? We recommend using Schluter edge metal to protect the edge of your tile and to create a clean, definitive transition between the two floors.

 

When the edge of tile is left exposed next to carpet, or if it is taller than the adjacent flooring, it's easy to kick and chip the tile. Metal edging protects the your tile from this damage.

 

Never install cementitious grout or epoxy grout  between tile and a floor that has any sort of flex or movement, such as wood flooring. Grout without a lot of flexibilty can crack or separate from the tile. Use caulking that matches your grout in these areas, or consider using a highly flexible urethane grout or Fusion Pro grout.

Choosing Materials for your Space and Lifestyle


Kitchen Floors

Kitchen with tan porcelain tile floor and matching countertop and backsplash.
A stone look-a-like porcelain in a subtle pinwheel pattern matches the soft neutrals of this kitchen.

In a kitchen, the main concern is cleanliness and hygiene. All manner of food and drink could be spilled on your floor, and so the materials you choose should be easy to clean up.

 

Durability should also be a high priority: if someone drops a heavy soup pan on the floor, will it chip? If you entertain a lot, will the tile hold up well to heavy foot traffic?

 

Another consideration is slip resistance. A polished surface can be slippery when wet; choose a material with some traction.

We recommend:

  • Porcelain. Almost completely non-porous and extremely durable, porcelain is a terrific material for kitchen floors. You can clean it with any household cleaner, and the vast majority of porcelain tiles dont require sealers. 
  • Non-Porous Grout. The perfect thing to go between porcelain tiles, a non-porous urethane grout doesn't require a sealer and won't absorb spills, stains, or bacteria.

Use caution with:

  • Slate with a natural finish. Natural cleft slate has a heavily textured surface that makes sweeping up crumbs is difficult. Honed slate is lower maintenance.
  • Travertine that is left unfilled. All of the pits and pores of an unfilled travertine are just hiding spots for crumbs and spilled liquids. If using an unfilled travertine, fill in the holes with grout for a smoother final product.
  • Polished tiles. Whether granite, marble, or polished porcelain, a smooth surface can be very slippery when wet.
  • Calcium based natural stones, such as limestone, travertine, and marble. Acidic liquids, like lemon juice, wine, or vinegar, can erode the calcium in these stones. Clean up spills quickly or risk a damaged floor.
  • Ceramic tiles. Even floor-grade ceramics will be more prone to cracking than porcelain tiles, and kitchens are filled with heavy appliances, pots, and pans that could damage a ceramic floor.

 

Learn more about tiling Kitchen Floors.

Bathroom Floors

A bathroom vanity with beige tiles that match the wainscoting and mosaic tile floor.
Mosaics are great for slip resistance; by carrying the mosaic up the walls, the room is given a sense of cozy unity.

If your bathroom has a tub or shower in it, then slip-resistance should be a concern when selecting floor materials.

 

Consider installing an in-floor heat system to make your feet more comfortable while you get ready in the morning.

We recommend:

  • Porcelain. Almost completely non-porous and extremely durable, porcelain is easy to clean and maintain. Find a tile with good friction or texture for a slip-resistant floor. 
  • Floor-grade ceramic tiles. Durable enough for a bathroom floor, these ceramic tiles are usually less expensive than porcelain tiles. Again, look for tiles with a decent amount of friction on the surface.
  • Natural stone with a honed, tumbled, or rough finish. Limestone, travertine, and slate are popular options.
  • Mosaics made from floor-grade porcelain, ceramic, glass, or stone. The frequent grout joints create a very slip-resistant surface.

Use caution with:

  • Polished tiles in a bathroom with a tub or shower. Whether granite, marble, or polished porcelain, a smooth surface can be very slippery. We recommend applying InvisaTread to add a a layer of friction to the surface of slick tiles.


Learn more about tiling Bathroom Floors.

Entryways, Hallways, and Areas with Heavy Foot Traffic

Brown and beige travertine stone floors and wainscoting in a traditional entryway

The first time someone walks into your home, you want them to be impressed with your tile selection. But you don't want them to slip and fall on a slick surface or see evidence of wear and tear.

 

Tiled entryway floors (and, to some extent, hallway floors) should be slip-resistant, durable, and attractive.

We recommend:

  • Porcelain. Almost completely non-porous and extremely durable, porcelain is easy to clean and maintain. Find a tile with good friction or texture for a slip-resistant floor. 
  • Natural stone with a honed, tumbled, or rough finish. Limestone, travertine, and slate are popular options.

Use caution with:

  • Polished tiles. Whether granite, marble, or polished porcelain, a smooth surface can be very slippery when people walk in with wet feet. We recommend applying InvisaTread to add a a layer of friction to the surface of slick tiles, or making sure guests wipe their feet before walking on your elegant floor.

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