Most of the floor tiles available in the market are glazed however you can also get unglazed tiles. But before discussing the differences between these two types of tiles let us know what actually glazed and unglazed mean.
Meaning of Glazed tiles
Usually people consider a glossy or shiny finish as glazed however in the industry of tiles, glazed is not a matter to describe a finish but a material that is coated on the tiles. It can be liquid glass or enamel that is coated on tiles to make them known as glazed. Glazed tiles can have glossy or matt finish to provide a different look to the space. Many tiles are available in both finishes but that does not mean that the tiles with matt finish are unglazed.
Meaning of Unglazed tiles
Tiles made of clay are put into a kiln for firing but if they have to be glazed then the coating has to be applied before putting them into the kiln. The process of firing the tiles infuses the glaze into the top layer of the clay of the tile. But, if no coating is applied on the tile before firing it, then it will be called an unglazed tile. In this way, the basic difference between the glazed tiles and unglazed tiles is the coating on them.
Unglazed tiles, whether they are made from porcelain or ceramic, get their color either from the minerals found in the clay they are made of or by adding pigments in it. When, these tiles are pressed to form patterned designs then the pattern runs down to the entire body of the tile, instead of remaining on the top surface only. In this way unglazed tiles look more natural and earthy.
Other differences between glazed and unglazed tiles
- Glazed tiles are coated with a layer of enamel or liquid glass before going through the process of firing them at high temperature however unglazed tiles on the other hand need not have any additional coating and they are ready to use after being fired in a kiln.
- Glazed tiles are mainly used in residential buildings because of their fine and slippery finish however unglazed tiles are normally used outdoors, commercial areas as well as wet areas because of their slip-resistant and natural finish
- Glazed tiles rarely get stained due to their non-porous and scratch resistant finish with the help of the layer of the liquid glass on them but unglazed tiles can easily get stained even after their scratch resistant finish because of their natural finish that can absorb liquids easily.
- Glazed tiles are thinner and less dense than unglazed tiles.
- Glazed tiles are available in a large selection of patterns and prints including digital prints by using inkjet printing technology however the designs of unglazed tiles look very natural, rustic and earthy.
- Full body of porcelain glazed tiles can never be made of porcelain, it also includes various other materials to make it stronger and reliable but the full body of unglazed tiles are fully made of porcelain to give them an all together homogeneous looks.
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