• What’s the difference between ceramic and porcelain tile?

    Contrary to popular belief, there is actually very little difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles. At one point, the materials to produce ceramic became scarce so porcelain products became the new norm.

    Both ceramic and porcelain tiles are great for residential high traffic areas because they are less likely to scratch and wear down over time. However, for busy commercial spaces or restaurants we always recommend a durable, full bodied porcelain tile. Due to the amount of traffic in these spaces, ceramic tile and glazed porcelain tile are not recommended as they will wear over time.

    Both are available in a variety of high-gloss, matte, and abrasive slip-resistant finishes. If you are choosing a tile for your floors, keep in mind that bright, reflective surfaces can be slippery and easily scratched.

  • How long will my tile last?

    Installation is key when it comes to long-lasting tile. Proper preparation will ensure your tile lasts as long as it’s supposed to, which should be the lifetime of your home.

    Proper care and maintenance are also key parts of extending the life of your tile.

  • How do I clean my tile?

    Simply dry sweeping your floors is a good way to remove dust and dirt. If you need to clean with water, use a soft, clean cloth and avoid abrasive or harsh chemical cleaners. It also recommended that you choose a PH-Neutral cleaner without any oils, which could leave a harmful residue. We can recommend cleaning products specific to your tile in-home or in-store.

    At our location, we have an environmentally friendly neutral floor cleaner called Green Clean that you can use on ceramic tile, porcelain tile, grout, and natural stone such as marble, granite, limestone, travertine, slate, sandstone.

    How often should I clean my tiles?

    Kitchen tiles should be cleaned every 2 to 3 days, as dirt and grime can build up quickly. A simple wipe down every other day can prevent this. Bathroom and floor tiles should be cleaned once a week.

    We recommend using rugs or mats in high traffic areas to limit the amount of dirt that can build up. Shake out your mats every week and wash your floors with a gentle mop and cleaner.

  • How do I clean grout?

    Grout is used to seal the spaces between your tile, and can collect dirt, dust and everything else in between. In order to maintain your tiles, it is also important to clean your grout just as frequently.

    Using a mild cleaner and a clean cloth, wet down the tile and grout and let it soak for a few minutes. This will release any stuck-on particles and make the surface easier to clean. If you have grout stains, you can use a few drops of fresh lemon juice or a bleach pen to remove them. Just keep in mind that you can only use a bleach pen on white grout.

  • I’m renovating - where do I start?

    Is your kitchen or bathroom ready for a updated look? Maybe your kids have moved out and it’s your turn to use the basement. Whatever your renovation needs are – we can help.

    When it comes to renovating your home, you need to decide what room needs to be renovated, what style/look you want to achieve, what parts you like/hate about the current room, and also what you hope to improve.

    From there, we walk you through the process, step-by-step. Typically, we start with the accent points of the room and work outwards. We can help you with just your tile selection and installation or each aspect of the renovation, it’s completely up to you!

  • I’m building a new home - where do I start?

    Building a new home comes with a lot of questions about colour choices and different products. We can help you navigate the sometimes confusing process of building your dream home.

    We take a holistic approach to choosing products, so that each rooms flows into the next seamlessly. We also help you narrow down your choices so that your rooms are never too busy, tacky, or mismatched.

    To get started, simply contact us for a free consultation either in-home or in-store so that we can discuss your needs.

  • Can I take tile samples home with me?

    Yes, and we recommend that you do. Tile colours can look different in different light. Take some samples home and compare them in the room you have in mind, and throughout different times of day, to ensure you love the product before you purchase.

  • How should I prepare for my initial tile consultation?

    The best way to prepare for your initial consultation, whether you come to our store or we come to your home, is to collect all of your ideas, inspirations, and even props to show us.

    Whether you have great accent pillows that you’d like to incorporate into the room, or kitchen cabinetry that you absolutely love, bring it in to show us! It will help us choose the right samples to suit your unique taste and style.

  • How do I pick the right granite countertop for my kitchen?

    Similarly to tile, granite can look different in different lighting. We recommend taking a sample home to make sure you absolutely love the colour before you make a final decision.

    If you know that you want a granite countertop, we also recommend choosing that item first, and building out around it. This way, your other product choices don’t overwhelm your great countertop. We can help you pick out other tile products for your backsplash, cabinetry, paint, and fixtures to complement your countertop.

  • Can I install tile on a retaining wall?

    Yes, but you must keep in mind what your retaining wall is made of. Depending on what is underneath the tile, it could influence what type of setting material you choose. Using the wrong setting material could lead to your tile not adhering properly.

    Also, for exterior tile projects, you need to make sure your tile is frost-resistant. We can help you pick the best tile for your project – simply call us today! 587.410.3495

  • Can I put tile on my patio?

    Similarly to tiling a retaining wall, it is important to choose the right tile and right setting material.

    The time of year is important for proper installation as well. Unless you live in California, only install exterior tiles between the months of June, July and August when it is unlikely that temperatures will drop drastically.

  • Can floor tiles be installed on the wall?

    Yes, virtually any floor tile product can go on the wall.

    A good rule of thumb is that any tile can go on the wall, but floor tile choices are much more specific. However, glass tile (typically used for back splashes) can be installed on the floor, but only in very low traffic areas.

  • Can I install tile over tile?

    Yes, but only if the tile beneath has been installed properly and has nothing currently wrong with it.

  • How do I know if my current tile is installed properly?

    A good DIY test for your tile is to drop a golf ball along different areas of your floor. Any hollow-sounding points would be an indication of poor installation.

  • Can I change my backsplash before updating my countertop?

    This is a very common question because homeowners either want to keep their current countertop and update the backsplash, or purchase the backsplash now and the more expensive countertop later.

    However, your new countertop must be installed first, or else your new backsplash could be compromised.

    So, if you need to do one or the other, install the countertop before the backsplash.

  • What is the best product for my backsplash?

    You can use ceramic, porcelain or glass tile to create a unique backsplash. We do, however, make product recommendations based on the look of your kitchen. Your tile, no matter the type, needs to complement the rest of your kitchen. We factor in your current cabinetry, countertops, paint, etc before we help you design a custom backsplash. The size of the tile is also a factor in ensuring your backsplash is installed properly and lasts a long time.

  • What unique features can I do with tile?

    We have tons of ideas to help you create a unique presentation with tile. For instance, we can create decorative inserts with tile in your bathroom, kitchen, or built-in shelves for your walls.

  • What do I need to know about tile ratings?

    Tile rating or the PEI classification (Porcelain Enamel Institute rating) of 0 through 5 is used to determine the strength of specific tile. This is not a rating of quality, but of which tile should be used for where. Use this guide to determine which tile would best suit your needs.

    Class 0: No foot traffic

    Wall tile only and should not be used on floors.

    Class 1: Very light traffic

    Very low foot traffic, bare foot only (master ensuite, spa, bathroom).

    Class 2: Light traffic

    Slipper or soft-soled shoes (second level main bathroom areas, bedrooms).

    Class 3: Light to moderate traffic

    Any residential area with the possible exception of some entries and kitchens if extremely heavy or abrasive traffic is anticipated.

    Class 4: Moderate to heavy traffic

    High foot traffic areas where abrasive or outside dirt could be tracked (residential entry, kitchen, balcony, and countertop).

    Class 5: Heavy traffic

    Ceramic tile suggested for residential, commercial and institutional floor subjected to heavy traffic.

  • What tile lasts the longest?

    Again, if your tile has been prepped and installed properly it should last a lifetime, whether it is a porcelain or ceramic product.

    Also, when you take into consideration the tile’s rating, where it has been installed, and how well you take care of it, there is not one tile that lasts longer than the other.

  • How do I care for my Natural Stone?

    Natural Stone products require slightly more care than the other types of tile.

    • Be preventative – Use non-slip mat or rugs to prevent dirt, sand and grit from building up. Remember to shake them out at least once a week.
    • Use a clean, non-treated dust mop on your floors regularly.
    • You can also damp mop your natural stone floor, but avoid any acids, like vinegar or lemon juice as well as commercial cleaners that contain harmful chemicals.
  • What tile should I choose for my restaurant floors?

    Beware of high heels and stilettos. This is the most common reason for damage to restaurant floor tiles. So, when it comes to choosing a good restaurant tile, you want to pick a product highly resistant to wear and tear.

    We can help! Talk to us about a product that won’t chip under the pressure of a stiletto.

  • Why should I buy my tile here versus a commercial store?

    Unlike commercial stores, we can come to your home and take accurate measurements ourselves. No longer do you have to second guess yourself and your measurements or end up with a product that doesn’t work for your space.

    We also take your entire home’s aesthetic into consideration, so that any home renovation you do blends together seamlessly.

    We can help you with just one step of the process, or every step. 100% customer satisfaction is our guarantee.

  • Why is it important to order all of your tile at once?

    One downside of all tiles, whether they be ceramic, porcelain, glass, or natural stone is that the colour and size of each style can vary from batch-to-batch. So for instance, if you are planning to tile your bathroom, hallway, and living room to match – it is imperative that you order the tile for that particular time all at once. This will ensure a cohesive look.

    Even for quick repairs it is handy to have an extra box of tile to match – just in case you ship one!

    Tile lines are also often discontinued, and you may not be able to order your exact tile again.

  • Is there a difference between Quartz and Quartzite products?

    Yes. Quartzite is a naturally occurring metamorphic rock that is created when sandstone in subjected to extreme heat. After the slabs of stone are mined, the tops are cut and polished to create exquisite countertops or cladding.

    Quartz is actually a man-made product that combines synthetic materials to create a unique countertop product.