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Unread 02-16-2020, 06:59 PM   #1
LisaS
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Unglazed Polished Porcelain vs. Glazed

We are doing a whole house remodel and putting a large format tile throughout. We want a polished look, and are debating between going with an unglazed polished porcelain vs. a glazed porcelain. Question is, which of our concerns is more likely to occur:

#1: Unglazed polished porcelain - STAINING. I know it is recommended that you seal the tile, due to the polishing opening up micro pores, but I want to know how effective sealing the tile really is?

#2: Glazed porcelain - SCRATCHING. I know the glazing is not going to be as durable as porcelain. Though, we do have some matte finish glazed tile samples from Daltile, and we scratched the heck of of them, and they were virtually indestructible. I don't have any glossy samples to scratch up and determine their durability.

This is a beach house that two kids, a dog, and a cat live in and track their wet, sandy messes throughout. I know DCOF rating is also a factor to weigh in.

Any advice/recommendations are appreciated!
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Unread 02-16-2020, 07:23 PM   #2
jadnashua
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I wouldn't want polished anywhere near an entry that could have people entering with wet feet or in a bathroom.

A good porcelain is similar hardness to sapphire, but glass is in the same league as quartz, and there's lots of quartz in a typical sand. Same hardness, so they will scratch each other. So, a glazed tile of any sorts, is likely to be scratched if there's a lot of sand around. A polished porcelain should last longer under those conditions. A through-body colored porcelain won't show as much of a problem if you drop something on it and it's chipped. A glazed tile will have that color broken off, exposing the base color of the tile which is not the same as the glaze. That can be an issue when you might need to cut a tile where that edge will show...the underlying color may show after grouting unless you're REALLY careful not to wash too much grout out during cleanup.

Sealing any tile or grout does not prevent stains...it slows absorption down, giving you a chance to clean the spill up first. Staining of the grout is likely to be more of an issue than the polished porcelain. That would be the same with a glazed or an unglazed tile of porcelain.
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Unread 02-16-2020, 07:29 PM   #3
cx
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Welcome, Lisa.

1. I don't know how well penetrating sealers protect polished porcelain. I do know that staining of the tiles when grouting is a serious problem and one that cannot be reversed when it occurs. I would personally avoid it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa
2. I know the glazing is not going to be as durable as porcelain.
I think you've probably got that backward if you select a tile with a decent glaze. You'll want a tile with a Visible Abrasion Classification of III or higher. That presumes your tiles meet the standards of ANSI A137.1.

The DCOF will usually be reported as well, but do keep in mind that all ceramic tile is slippery when wet.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 02-16-2020, 09:59 PM   #4
LisaS
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Thanks guys! I do absolutely hate grout, and I would never forgive myself if the grout stains my beautiful tile, so it sounds like we will go with a glazed porcelain.

We love the "fancy" look that a polished tile gives, but I will have to search high and low for a polished glazed porcelain with an acceptable DCOF rating, or consider using an anti-slip treatment in areas of concern. Or just go with a matte finish tile. Daltile has a line called Volume 1.0 that comes pretreated with their "StepWise Technology"... definitely on our list.

I know this is an age old question, and I've read quite a few of the threads, but any grout recommendations?? I hate all grout, lol. We've done a few remodels now, used pretty much every grout you can buy, and I can't say that I have a favorite. We will use a rectified tile so the joints can be as narrow as possible. I just need the grout to be uniform in color and stain resistant, as the color will be very light.

Thanks again!
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Unread 02-16-2020, 10:09 PM   #5
jadnashua
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An epoxy grout will likely be the most stain resistant.
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Unread 02-17-2020, 10:03 AM   #6
cx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa
I will have to search high and low for a polished glazed porcelain...
I can help narrow your search, Lisa. You will find polished porcelain and you will find glazed porcelain, but you will not find polished glazed porcelain.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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