Slate tile is a naturally diverse flooring option. It has a
wealth of advantages over other
materials. Slate’s first and foremost advantage lies in its durability.
Slate, as a rock, has a naturally smooth texture thanks to tightly bonded silt
and clay particles once stressed under high heat and pressure. This relatively
fine texture makes it difficult for most liquids to penetrate and stain the
tiles. Still more incredible is the popular texture called “natural cleft.”
This texture is actually rough enough to create a natural anti-slip surface,
but at the same time is smooth and compact enough to prevent most stains.
That being said, using sealants on slate is not unheard of.
Many homeowners enjoy a wet look achieved with a penetrating sealer that makes
tiles even more resistant to stains. At the same time, the slate is porous
enough to prevent any sort of glossy residue or build up, so the unique appeal
and texture of the stone is not compromised.
Slate is also available in an array of naturally occurring color
options. Minerals and impurities within the slate itself create a color
spectrum ranging from black to rust, grey, maroon, and assorted mixtures. Tiles
may also be purchased in a variety of thicknesses, with 1/4-inch being the most
As for shapes, slate again shows off its diversity. Tiles
are available in uniform tiles or in irregular sheets that can be cut into
specific shapes (irregular or not). Slate tiles must be cut with a hacksaw or a
wet diamond blade.
Slate is also affordable and comfortable to walk on, absorbs
rather than reflect heat, and is easy to maintain.
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