Tile Style: Porcelain Wood Tile vs. Real Wood

September 11, 2016

Porcelain Wood Tile, with its natural colors and realistic grain and knots, looks so much like real hardwood that it’s hard to tell them apart. But you’ll soon notice the difference when it comes to maintaining wood look tile, which needs only a quick vacuum or mop now and then to stay looking great for years.

Wood tile, at $4-12 per square foot, is also more economical than real wood flooring, which can top $15 per square foot. If you want a natural and uniform look, without random knots and rings, then wood tile is a better choice because it is more consistent. 

But those aren’t the only two reasons why you might want to consider porcelain over real wood. In fact, here are five more reasons to give wood tile another look:

Wood Tile is Tough

 Featured: Copper

Natural hardwood floors are high-maintenance divas requiring special care. Pets’ nails must be trimmed so they don’t scratch the wood. Indoor humidity must be maintained between 35-55% or the wood warps or dries out. Water must be wiped up immediately or there’s a risk it will soak in or discolor boards. Unlike natural wood, porcelain wood tile, such as Copper, is tough and stands up to water, fluctuating temperatures, and varied humidity levels inside and outside your home. On top of that, tile doesn’t dent or split like wood can, which means that your wood tile will require little to no repair over its lifetime.

Tile Laughs at Water

Featured: Natural

In contrast to hardwood floors, porcelain wood tile is impervious to water, making it a good choice for bathrooms and kitchens. For example, Forest Natural has the look of vintage, random-width hardwood flooring, but it won’t buckle from forgotten shower drips or unnoticed kitchen spills.

Tile Loves Kids and Pets

Featured: Aspenwood Café

While hardwood floors age with time and use, porcelain wood tile maintains its color and texture throughout the years, making it a good choice for high-traffic areas like entryways and family rooms where kids and pets play. Aspenwood Café features rich browns and natural-looking veins, grains and knots that won’t fade or scratch, and are easy to clean when family members—including four-legged ones—have little accidents.    

Tile is Sustainable and Lasting

Featured: Beige

No trees go into covering your floors with wood tile, making it a “green” alternative to real hardwood flooring. Options like the rustic-looking Beige pictured here also resist fading and warping, and don’t require refinishing every 5-10 years as hardwood flooring does. Your tastes will likely change far before your wood tile floors actually wear out.

Tile Looks Natural

 Featured: Cashew

Wood tile, with its large variety of natural tones, fools the eye. Cashew, in particular, features rich browns and beiges combined to imitate the natural knots and grains of hardwood. This material is also great on countertops and accent walls. And unless you actually drop to your knees and touch it, you’ll never notice your kitchen or mudroom is covered with tile rather than wood—except when it comes to its easy maintenance!

Porcelain wood tile gives you all the beauty and warmth of hardwood floors, but without the high maintenance, warping, fading, and scratching. Water is never the enemy, making wood tile a perfect choice for kitchen and bath floors. And since no trees fall to make porcelain tile, wood tile flooring is a far more sustainable option than hardwood.