Wood-look tile is quickly becoming a popular alternative to hardwood flooring due to its ability to withstand moisture. It's made from porcelain or ceramic tiles that have a wood-grain image printed onto them during the manufacturing process. While it looks similar to real hardwood, it isn't a perfect replica. If you want the look and feel of wood flooring in your home, real hardwood is still the best option. To learn about the advantages of choosing real hardwood over wood-look tile for your floors, read on.
Hardwood Flooring Is Easier to Repair
While wood-look tile is harder than wood and more difficult to damage, the damage tends to be more catastrophic when it does occur. Tile is much more brittle than wood, so it's more likely to chip if you drop a heavy object onto it.
A chipped tile needs to be removed and replaced to repair the damage. With wood-look tile, you risk being unable to find an exact replacement for the damaged tile. Since wood-look tiles are created using digital images that are printed onto the tiles, it may be impossible to find a replacement if the model of your tile is no longer in production. If you can't find a perfect match for the damaged tile, you'll need to replace your whole tile floor.
With hardwood flooring, you can remove and replace a badly damaged board with one from the same species. If you use the same stain and finish on it as you use for the rest of your floor, it will blend in perfectly.
In addition, you also have the option of resurfacing a hardwood floor if the whole floor is scratched. Resurfacing hardwood involves sanding it down slightly to reveal new wood underneath the damaged area. You don't have this option with wood-look tile. Hardwood flooring may be vulnerable to scratches than wood-look tile, but they're easier to fix in hardwood.
Wood-Look Tile Flooring Has Visible Grout Lines
Like all tile flooring, wood-look tile floors have grout lines between the tiles. While the grout lines are very small in wood-look flooring, they can often still be seen, and they become more visible if dirt and dust build up on the grout and discolor it.
The grout lines on a wood-look tile floor expose it as being tile rather than real hardwood, and they also take away from the appearance of the floor. When you choose to install real hardwood flooring, you never have to worry about visible grout lines.
Hardwood Flooring Is a More Comfortable Surface for Your Feet
Hardwood flooring is softer than wood-look tile, making it more comfortable to walk on with bare feet. It also doesn't get as cold during the winter. Tile flooring can make quite a bit of noise when you walk on it, as well, whereas hardwood muffles the sound. Overall, there's a significant difference in how it feels to walk on a wood-look tile floor versus a hardwood floor, with hardwood being the more comfortable choice.
While wood-look tile is an overall great choice for flooring, it still can't fully replace real hardwood. Hardwood flooring can be resurfaced and is easier to repair, and it also feels better underneath your feet. If you want wood floors in your home, choosing real hardwood flooring still gives you the most natural look and feel.
Speak to a flooring service for more info.