The hearth is one of the most useful places on a fireplace. A fireplace hearth is on the floor just outside the fireplace and protects your home from heat and flying sparks. Many fireplace hearths are fitted with tiles to create a decorative and practical surface. Several different types of tiles can be used to create a tile hearth.
Classic Stone Tiles
For a classic and elegant style hearth consider marble or granite tiles. Both marble and granite tiles come in a variety of sizes and colors to fit with your home's decor. Marble tiles have a look many homeowners love, however they also stain easily. When installing granite or marble tiles you will need to cut them to size with a diamond blade wet tile saw. The diamond blade is important because the stone tiles are harder than typical ceramic tile.
Ceramic tiles are inexpensive and come in a large selection of colors, finishes, and styles. Ceramic tiles are also manufactured in styles that mimic natural stone for less cost. When choosing ceramic tiles for your fireplace hearth, make sure to get tiles that have a foot-traffic rating of at least a three. This will help your tiles to hold up much longer to the constant heat and use of the fireplace. The installation of a ceramic tile hearth is simple because the tiles are easy to cut and adhere in place.
Earthy Stone Tiles
Some homeowners love the look of natural stone, but don't want to spend the money to purchase marble or granite tiles. Other homeowners simply like tiles that are earthy and natural looking. Slate is a beautiful stone that come in a variety of earthy colors from dark blues to rust. Terra cotta is another choice for a fireplace hearth. Terra cotta tiles are generally tan or rust in color. Similarly, travertine is usually tan and is used in many bathrooms and kitchen for tile floors. Travertine also holds up well in a fireplace hearth.
Like ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles are manufactured and not cut from larger stone pieces. Porcelain typically costs more to purchase than ceramic tiles, but the tiles are much harder than ceramic tiles. Porcelain tiles can be purchased in several different colors to fit the style of your home. Because porcelain tiles are harder than ceramic, you will need to use a diamond blade tile saw to cut the tiles to size during installation.
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