Bob Vila Radio: Choosing Tile

By Sarah Monzon & Bob Vila | Updated Dec 18, 2013 5:28 PM

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Choosing your tile is not as easy as walking into a showroom and picking a color or pattern. You have to consider how it will be used.

Choosing Tile



Listen to BOB VILA ON CHOOSING TILE, or read the text below:

For wet areas like bathrooms and kitchens you need a vitreous or impervious tile, not a porous one. Floors need tiles with more flexural strength than those that go on walls. Tile for countertops needs to resist impact and acids. And glazed or polished tiles are easier to clean for walls, but they’re not suitable for wet floors because they can be slippery.

Price is not always a good indicator of tile quality. Ask your dealer if the tile you’re considering complies with the American National Standards Institute (or ANSI) and if it’s reliable for the type of project you’re doing.

To determine how much you need, multiply the area’s width and length and then add five percent for waste. Round up to have extras for any repairs down the line.

Even if you hire a pro, tile is a good investment. Some realtors estimate that every dollar you spend on tile installation adds $1.50 to your home’s value.

Bob Vila Radio is a newly launched daily radio spot carried on more than 60 stations around the country (and growing). You can get your daily dose here, by listening to—or reading—Bob’s 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day.

For more on flooring options, consider:

How to Install Tile
Subway Tiles: The New Classics
How to Grout Tile