Tile That Looks Like Wood: Where to Find It & Cost
Today we discuss tiles that look like wood; where to find these tiles? How much do they cost? You will find all these information in our guide.
Tiles are a crucial part of any building. They determine the aesthetic value of any residential or commercial building which in turn influences the value of the property. You, therefore, want the best tiling. However, despite their durability, it is not often you come across tiles with top aesthetics.
Hardwood floors of the other hand have a better aesthetic effect than tiling which is why homeowners prefer them. However, they are often too expensive to put in for most homeowners and aren’t as durable as tiles. Wood like tiles resolves this conflict by combining the beauty of timber with the durability of porcelain tiles and for at an affordable price. The price, however, is subject to the brand and design.
Wood like tiles have been around, but it is not until recent years that they have found favor with décor trendsetters owing mainly in part to improved technologies. These advancements make the wood effect seem more realistic.
Before you decide whether wood-like tiles are the best for you, there is a lot you need to learn about them. We advise you read the entire guide to help you make an informed decision.
Tile Flooring That Looks Like Wood Cost
Many factors will determine the amount you pay for wood tile installation and may vary drastically depending on where you live.
First, there is the size of the house or area to be covered by the tiles. Larger rooms will require more materials and will consume more time. The result is that you will pay higher. However, the cost per square foot is lower for large projects. The reason for this is the economies of scale associated with bulk. Manufacturers will give you discounts when you purchase in bulk. Transportation will be cheaper for more materials, and the contractors often provide discounts for substantial work.
The quality of the tiles will determine the amount too. However, quality refers to more than the design but also includes what lies underneath. The design will influence the cost depending on the finish you are looking for. The price will vary between hand scraped textures, glossy finishes, and entirely distressed. Each has a different manufacturing process and thus a different rate. Additionally, the strength and durability of the materials will also influence the price. Tiles with higher abrasion resistance will cost more as they can stand more traffic and pressure without wear and tear. Finally, the materials used to manufacture the tiles will influence the cost too.
The installation process will also influence the total cost. DIY is often cheaper, but we advise you hire a professional as the process is more difficult than it looks. It is also quite time-consuming, and a 500 sqft room will take two days. Be ready to pay for the person-hours at a $20 to $30 cost per hour.
The brand you purchase will influence the final amount you pay. Different brands manufacture wood tiles for different markets.
Daltile is the company for affordable flooring solutions. It started operations in 1947 and is a leading stone and ceramic tiles manufacturer. Most of their pieces retail for $6 and under for every square foot. They currently have ten lines of wood tiles with color and aesthetic variations for each. You also have a full berth of sizes and designs.
Vitromex is another well-known tile manufacturer, and their tiles are available at most retailers countrywide. If you are looking for an oak wood tile, then we recommend Vitromex. Though they only have eight lines of wood tiles, they have mastered the art of manufacturing oak wood tiles. You will have the intricate texture and grain patterns that rivals rustic oak. As for the price, expect to pay between $6 and $10 per square foot.
These currently have eight lines of wood look planks. You are spoilt for choice as each line has a different aesthetic and color scheme. We especially like the Botanica, Sygma, and Salvage collection as they are more realistic. To top it, they have a wide selection of flooring accessories to accompany the individual tiles. As for the cost, they are quite affordable with most pieces being under $10 per square foot.
Florim USA is a market leader and is perhaps the most advanced porcelain manufacturer. It’s also a leader in environmentally friendly processes. Therefore, consider purchasing Florim tiles if you are looking for eco-friendly options. Despite being from sustainable sources, the tiles are of supreme quality. Their six collections feature classic finishes and feel as well as distressed and rustic looking tiles. Their higher price tag is justified owing to the superior attention to details and high-resolution graphics.
If you are looking for top-end ceramic tiles, then it doesn’t get better than Provenza. The Italian manufacturer has introduced two lines of wood like tiles to selected retailers. If you have a lot of wiggle room, you can purchase the most fantastic option which will set you back about $25 a square foot. However, don’t be alarmed as there are affordable options in each line.
Percolanosa is a leader in the manufacture of ceramic tiles, and their tiles are on the higher end of the price spectrum. The design and quality of tiles is something you have never seen before. Also, they are ever expanding their collections meaning their pieces are becoming more and more affordable. You can get free samples from their over 400 showrooms across the USA as well as discounts from their designers.
Another Italian brand, the Marca Corona is distributed worldwide and has five collections. Of the 5, the Externo series is our favorite. It features an intelligent design imitating the ridged s-wooden decking used around a pool or on a patio.
|Daltile||$6 or less|
|Vitromex||$6 - $10|
|MS International||$10 or less|
|Florim USA||$5 - $12|
Dry Cleanup: Pet hairs, dust, and dirt
Pets add to our lives including their fur. Though you can vacuum the hair, most of these modern vacuum cleaners spread the strands across the room. A rubber broom is better equipped for cleaning pet hairs. The short rubber bristles attract the hair effortlessly, making the entire process a breeze. Dirt and dust, on the other hand, are inevitable and more so in rooms that have access to the outdoors. You can start by adding a welcome mat to reduce the amount of dirt carried into your home. Otherwise, running a vacuum cleaner with a “hard floor” setting will help you with the dirt. You might have to vacuum in a cross-hatch pattern to remove dust and grit in your grout lines. However, this depends on the width and depth of the tracks.
You should mop your floor at least once a week. Vacuuming is often not enough to get rid of all dirt. Mopping will get rid of the dust left. First, ensure you have vacuumed any dirt before introducing the mop otherwise you will end up creating a film of mud. We advise you use a pH cleaner with some warm water. Ensure you wring out as much of the solution from the mop. Finally, dry the floor using a dry mop. When selecting a cleaner, avoid those that contain ammonia, wax, and abrasives so as not to discolor or damage your tiles.
Accidents happen and more often in houses with kids. These spills are a breeze to clean, and your tiles will still be as beautiful. The secret is not to let the spill sit for long. Clean the mess immediately with a clean towel and proceed to clean the residue with a pH balanced cleaner. Finally, dry the floor with a dry cloth to restore its luster. Drying also reduces the danger a wet floor poses.
Areas that have high traffic will often need a deep cleaning. These are rooms such as the bathroom, the kitchen, and places that have access to the outdoors. Though deep cleaning sounds like a complicated process, it is a breeze. Regularly sweeping, vacuuming, and mopping the areas will keep your tiles in top condition. Nevertheless, there are times when you will have to do more; say after a party or a special event.
Start with spot cleaning areas show spots or dirt. It helps as you get rid of excess dirt. Follow it up with mopping the floor with a pH balanced cleaner. Rinse the mop when it gets dirty and freshen the water when it becomes cloudy. Afterward, go over the whole room with a clean mop, and warm water and then dry.
Wood Tiles Pros
Other than the two mentioned above (durability and affordability), there are tons of benefits of installing a wood tile floor. Some benefits are debatable namely it working better with radiant floor heating, or that it is cheaper to clean and maintain. Nevertheless, some ideas aren’t questionable.
Selection – One top benefit of wood tiles is the wide berth of designs and ideas available. If there is any wood style you like, it’s probably replicated in tile. You can have anything from pieces with hand scraped textures, to ones that look distressed. Also, you can have any color tone in the wood grain.
The selection, however, goes above and beyond since you can effortlessly mix and match tiles of different design and sizes. You can do this to create interest or to delineate an area. Finally, some leading interior designers have taken to using wood tiles on the floor and an accent wall creating a dramatic look which you can consider if you want to make a bold statement.
Moisture resistant – The ability of tiles to resist moisture is one other reason why you should install them. Unlike wood which warps if exposed to water for long periods of time, these tiles are porcelain and water does not affect. They are thus ideal for bathrooms and kitchens.
Easy maintenance – Not cheaper but easier. Any homeowner knows the issues associated with wood floors. It chips, nicks and scratches easily. Wood tile, on the other hand, has none of these problems thanks to its durability. It is also easier to clean than hardwood. First, you don’t have to be extra careful, and a mop or a spray cleaner often does the job. If you are dealing with tough stains, we advise you use a non-abrasive cleaning brush so as not to damage the tiles.
Light and custom colors – Wood rarely comes in whites, whitewashes, or gray. Wood tiles, however, are available in a wide range of these colors.
Therefore, you can opt for tiles if you are looking for a wood grain or texture but in color not associated with wood. Finally, you can customize the color tone with the wood style to fully customize your floor. You can opt for full glossy, traditional, hand scraped, etc.
Sustainable – Wood tiles are ideal for individuals who are environmentally conscious. Despite using some raw materials, they are manufactured from recycled waste.
Broad tiles at no extra cost and no height issues – Unlike wood, you can get extensive tiles at no added price. Full wood will be more expensive because it is more difficult to come by suitable raw materials. On the other hand, a manufacturer can produce tiles of any width at no extra cost. As for the height, tiles require no underlayment and have a low profile, unlike wood. The low profile means it will not be an issue where you have a door or where two-floor types meet. However, wood will require an underlayment and can be over 3/4” thick which can be a problem.
Wood Tiles Cons
Not the real deal – Wood tiles aren’t the genuine article. Despite the looks being dead on and having better durability than wood, it still lacks the aroma and feel of real wood. Also, it could be a trend, and trends come and go.
Repairs – Though they are durable, they aren’t impervious. A tile will crack should something hard or heavy fall on it. Also, seeing as they cannot be finished, simple damages such as scratches cannot be sanded out, and you will have to replace the entire tile. Now, getting the replica can be effortless or nearly impossible.
Grout – This may not influence your final flooring decision, but you will have to scrub the grout lines should you install tiles. Now, this can be a problem if you are putting in tiles over a large area.
Cold and hard – Though this can be a benefit during summer, it is a con and more so during winter. Wood is softer and is better. Nevertheless, radiant floor heating can help solve the problem. Check your climate before making a final decision.
Slippery when wet – Though they are ideal for kitchens and bathrooms, they can be dangerous when wet. The possibility of one slipping and injuring themselves is quite high.
Installation – Tile installation is more difficult to DIY than wood. Though wood isn’t easier, tile installation is a more difficult skill to learn. It also takes longer to install so expect to be on your knees for extended periods of time. Finally, there is more margin for error.
Fragile – Though wood tiles are more durable than wood, they tend to break easily during transportation. Seeing as they are manufactured in long planks to resemble wood, they tend to break.
Factors to Consider Before Hiring a Tile Contractor
Installing wood tiles is an exciting part of any renovation. You get a new look and feel of your home. However, it can turn into a nightmare if you hire a con or an inexperienced contractor. It, therefore, goes without saying that getting a proficient individual/company is as crucial as the installation.
Know what you want – Before you speak to any contractor or ask for referrals, it’s best you know what you are looking for. You will get more accurate estimates if you can be specific about what you want. That is, the area you need to be covered, the design of the tiles, etc.
References – Asking around for recommendations is an excellent place to start. Ask family and friends to refer you tiling contractors or home improvement companies they have worked with in the past. It could be better if you found colleagues who have installed new tiling within the last six months. Ask about their experiences with the company to get a feel of what they are about.
Checking online through review sites can steer you in the right direction. Websites such as the Better Business Bureau and Angie’s List can be of great help. Google reviews too. Pay attention to the negative reviews as they can point out some pitfalls. Finally, don’t trust the reputation alone but the number of completed jobs too. It’s best you work with a company that has completed 1000+ tasks but with a few (10 to 20) negative reviews, than one with a spotless record but very few completed jobs. The former has stood the test of time.
Phone and face to face interviews – Once you have shortlisted several wood tile contractors, you need to conduct interviews. First, call them and ask them about their availability, whether they take projects of your size, whether they can provide a list of financial references from financial institutions, etc. These questions will help you know the reliability and credibility of the contractor. After phone interviews, you need to meet a company’s representative to get a feel of the institution. The individual should be professional and respond to your questions satisfactorily. Avoid company’s whose representative cannot.
Get estimates – For any home improvement or construction job, always get more than three estimates. Installing wood tiles is no exception. When accepting quotes, ensure it is from companies you trust. Though the bids might vary, the difference shouldn’t be that significant. Be wary of quotes that are often out of range with the others. Usually, when a bid is too low, it is a ruse to get one foot into your house. The contractors end up changing the price during installation. Otherwise, expect different price tags as different companies have varying overheads and operational expenses. Finally, only accept in-person quotes. A salesperson has to assess your house and needs for them to give an appropriate bid.
Licensed and certified – Licenses identify an installer as being legalized to operate in your locale. It also shows that the individual is dedicated to his craft. When conducting your research on the best wood tile contractors around you, always ask if they are licensed. However, don’t take their word for it but ask for the number and check with the consumer protection agency. Certification, on the other hand, shows that the contractor is a knowledgeable professional and has been verified by meeting several industry standards. Some certifications you can look out for are Certified Tile Installer and the Advanced Tile Installer Certification.
Sign a contract – Finally, ensure you sign a detailed contract that covers all areas. These include the timeline, guarantees, payment schedule, etc. If you don’t have it documented, it’s your word against theirs. If the contractor’s agreement isn’t sufficient, write a new contract or provide addendums. Finally, any change in the project should generate a change in the deal.
How to Avoid Wood Tile Scams
Be careful when dealing with licensed contractors
We know that this is an antithesis of everything discussed above, but you need to be careful when dealing with licensed contractors. Often the individual you speak to when getting the estimate is different from the installer. The chances are that the first is qualified but the later isn’t, and most homeowners don’t bother to check the credentials of the second. Should this happen, ask for the credentials of the installer. You could be putting your entire project in the hands of an amateur.
Be wary of one time offers and discounts
We all love a good cut. Also, who would not like an exclusive offer, and the chance to save money? However, we advise against being wooed by these ludicrous offers as they are often scams. The today only, or one-time offers are often a ruse for you to sign a contract you do not understand. The outcome is that either the price is higher than others would have charged, or that the amount will change during the project. Don’t be pressured into signing a contract by these fantastic offers as they are scams. Take your time and go through various bids before you make your final decision.
Contractors have found a way to defraud homeowners by purchasing low-quality materials or keeping the items left over after the project. Seeing as homeowners cannot tell the difference between pieces. They cannot tell between quality wood tiles and low-quality tiles. Contractors, therefore, get away with purchasing low-quality materials despite having paid top-dollar for it. To avoid this, you need to educate yourself on the different tiles available, and how to identify them. Also, check the materials that are delivered to your site. Keep the receipts to return any items left for a refund. Finally, avoid any contractors who say they have wood tiles left from a previous job.
Fraudulent dealers are often after your money. Guarding it will ensure that you aren’t duped. First, never agree to pay a deposit of 15% of the total project cost. Yes, the contractor will need some money to purchase materials, but any credible contractor can get items on credit from suppliers. Be wary of any individual who asks for a ridiculously high deposit. Second, never pay the entire amount as a lump sum, and never at the beginning of the project. The wood tile contractor should be comfortable working with a payment schedule.
Make the final payment after you have inspected and are satisfied with the results. Finally, avoid making cash payments, and be wary of clients that insist. Always make payments through the bank and to a company and not an individual. Any professional contractor will not only understand but ask as well. There is a certain comfort in knowing that there is a company with a verifiable on the other end of the payment and that the amount can be tracked.
10 Questions to Ask Your Tile Contractor
What technical training have you received?
Remember, installing wood tiles requires a skilled individual, and the first step towards getting a gorgeous floor is hiring an experienced contractor. Start by asking about their experience working with wood tiles. Years of experience might not be enough. They tiling industry is changing, and contractors should keep up with the changes. Ask if s/he attends conventions, educational opportunities, and training classes.
Do you provide floor care instructions?
Though wood tiles are hardy, they need top maintenance for longevity. You need to know whether the contractor will provide the instructions for maintaining your floor in top condition. If they are not in a position to provide you with expert advice, they should give the manufacturer’s instructions or guide you to proper sources. Also, will s/he help with the maintenance? Can I have you on call for repairs? Get the answers to these questions before signing any contract.
How is your schedule?
The best contractors are ever busy. If you did hire a proficient contractor, then don’t expect them to start working on your project right away. They probably have a backlog of projects that they need to work on before they can get to you. Asking this question will also help you know about their availability. However, fall and winter are an exception here. These are a contractor’s low season, so most will be available.
Do you work with sub-contractors?
So, you are certain that you are working with a qualified individual, but what about the sub-contractors s/he might hire. Are they qualified? Are they insured? Do they have workers compensation? Make sure to ask and guarantee all the above.
What can you guarantee?
This is a question that most homeowners don’t like. It sounds rude, but it can help you understand the individual you are working with. Only work with people who are willing to guarantee their work. It shows professionalism, and they trust in themselves.
How long have you been installing wood tiles?
The idea here is to gauge the experience the contractor has. You want a company/institution with several years working with wood tiles. Also, it helps you know the institution you are working with. Work with an organization that has been around for several years, not because their work is better but because there is a lower likelihood of you being conned.
How long will the tiles last?
Tiles are durable. But don’t let any contractor fool you that they will last forever. Most wood tiles will last for around 40 years after which you will have to change. Any proficient contractor will know this.
Ask about repairs
One of the top problems with wood tiles is that repairs can be complicated. New designs are being introduced while old ones are phased out. Therefore, the likelihood that you will get the same tile design in the future is low. Ask how the company could tackle such a problem. Often, you will have to change the floor plan to accommodate a new design plan.
What customer protection measures have you put in place?
Though tiles are durable, they often break during transportation. Ask the contractor about the measures s/he has put in place to protect you. Do his suppliers accept returns?
Will you clean up after the project?
Often cleaning up is never included in the project. You, therefore, need to establish who will be responsible and whether it will be for a fee if you require the contractor to do it.
Tiles that look like wood are the trend now. They look and feel good but bear in mind that they can be a trend and these come and go. Also, there are tons of designs available that you will get one that fits you. Finally, different companies manufacture for different markets so there is a likelihood that you will have something that fits your budget.