Glass tiles have a brilliant shine and depth that is lacking in other types of tile. Whether they are mosaics or oversized large-format tiles, they make a statement wherever they are placed. This often leads some homeowners to wonder if they can use these statement tiles on the floor. After all, what better way to make a statement than with a pop of color and shine beneath your feet?
Not all glass tiles are created equally, which is the first thing to consider when determining their use. Some will scratch very easily, so while they may hold up to the pressure of being underfoot, they will quickly lose their shine. Others are not meant to withstand pressure; a high heel put down firmly may crack the tile and ruin the floor.
That said, there are several types of glass tiles that can be used safely in a floor setting. Iridescent mosaics make an excellent floor tile in bathrooms and other low-traffic areas, for example. Some types of hand poured glass can also be used on floors, provided that care is taken with tiles that have sharp, cut edges.
Color-backed tiles, meaning that the color is painted onto the back of the tile, tend to do the worst in a floor setting. These tiles are usually rated for wall use only, and if you do place them on the floor it should be as an accent or border only.
Some newer glass tiles are being combined with resins into large format tiles perfect for use on the floor. These tiles do not look like traditional glass tiles, however, and more resemble quartz or glass countertops. These are usually a green building material, however, and therefore are a good choice for homeowners wanting an eco-friendly floor tile that has some sparkle and interest to it.
If you’re wondering if the glass tile you’ve picked out could be used on the floor, be sure to ask us at Century Tile. We are happy to help with questions about tile, if it is floor rated, and if so where the most appropriate placement for the tile. Feel free to ask!