kitchen flooring material.
From: Thomas Lofft (
Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2018 09:19:02 -0700 (PDT)
On 3/11/2018 2:22 PM, Ruth J Hirsch wrote:
> Hi,
> We are looking at kitchen flooring material.
> Complicated decision.
> Someone has suggested ceramic.  Has anyone actually had experience with this?
> Concerns include:  breakage of items dropped and how does the grout wear?
> Appreciate your input.

Ceramic comes in multiple colors and finishes, flat or glazed, lots of sizes 
and pattern, all very unforgiving to stemware.

The risk of tile breakage is subject to a very heavy and hard item (Like a 
large mixing machine) being dropped on it,  and subject to the flexibility of 
the substructure, including the joists and floor bridging as well as the 
strength of the subfloor itself.

E.g., a floor framed with 24" joist spacing instead of 16" or 12" joist spacing 
will have greater deflection and render the tile grout to heavier flexing and 
cracking, not good. Unquestionably, the floor joists must have cross bridging.

Your architect or structural engineer or a very good builder can advise about 

A careful tile installer should make sure the joists and subfloor are stiff 
enough to not allow flexural damage to a ceramic floor.

If a ceramic tile gets cracked, chipped or badly broken, the grout may be 
routed out and tiles replaced, if you save some surplus of the original color 
lot. Finding any other match at a later date may be close to impossible.

To avoid grout discoloration, it is essential to use grout sealer. In 
commercial kitchens with occasional grease spillage, there may be grout 
discoloration from grease or coffee stains. Sealer can be worn off with 
frequent mopping, scrubbing and cleaning. If that's part of your daily 
maintenance routine, then a follow-up requisite is to reseal the grout joints 
every month.

But ceramic floors are very forgiving to water spills and won't warp or wear 
through the surface from daily foot traffic, or even roller carts, but I would 
advise having rubber wheels, not steel wheels on your carts.

Cheers, best of cohousing to you,

Tom Lofft

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