what is the difference between porcelain and ceramic in Charlottesville, VA

Ceramic or Porcelain Tile: Understanding the Porcelain and Ceramic Difference for Your Next Project

What is the difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles?

Ceramic and porcelain tiles are both popular choices for flooring and wall coverings in homes and businesses. While they share some similarities, they also have some key differences that make them unique. 

In this blog, we will explore the difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles and help you determine which one is the best choice for your next project.

What is Ceramic Tile?

Ceramic tiles are made from natural clay that is mixed with water, molded into the desired shape, and then fired in a kiln at high temperatures. The glaze, which is the top layer of the tile, is then applied and fired again. Ceramic tiles come in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and colors, making them a versatile choice for a variety of applications.

What is Porcelain Tile?

Porcelain tiles are similar to ceramic tiles in that they are made from natural clay that is molded and fired at high temperatures. However, porcelain tiles are made from a specific type of clay that is denser and more refined than the clay used for ceramic tiles. This makes porcelain tiles stronger and more durable than ceramic tiles, with a lower water absorption rate.

Porcelain tiles vs ceramic tiles: testing durability, absorption, maintenance, cost & installation

Now that we have a basic understanding of what ceramic and porcelain tiles are, let's dive deeper into the main areas of difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles. 


In the ultimate test of porcelain tiles vs ceramic tiles, we will start by looking at durability. Porcelain tiles are denser and harder than ceramic tiles, making them more durable and resistant to wear and tear. This makes them a great choice for high-traffic areas or outdoor applications. Ceramic tiles are still durable but are more prone to chipping and cracking than porcelain tiles.

Water Absorption

Porcelain tiles have a lower water absorption rate than ceramic tiles, making them less prone to water damage and staining. This makes porcelain tiles a better choice for areas with high moisture levels, such as bathrooms and kitchens.


Both ceramic and porcelain tiles are relatively easy to maintain and clean. However, due to their lower water absorption rate, porcelain tiles are easier to clean and require less maintenance than ceramic tiles.


Porcelain tiles are generally more expensive than ceramic tiles due to their higher durability and lower water absorption rate. Ceramic tiles are more affordable and are a great choice for those on a budget.


Both ceramic and porcelain tiles are installed in the same way, using a thinset mortar and grout. However, due to their higher density and hardness, porcelain tiles may be more difficult to cut and install than ceramic tiles.

What’s your choice? Ceramic or porcelain tiles? 

After investigating the primary difference between ceramic and porcelain tiles, you may have come up with a conclusion as to which one you should choose for your next project. As you can see, it really depends on your specific needs and budget. If you are looking for a durable and low-maintenance option for high-traffic areas, such as a commercial building or outdoor patio, porcelain tiles may be the best choice. However, if you are on a budget and are looking for an affordable option for a residential bathroom or kitchen, ceramic tiles may be the way to go.

Whether you’ve made up your mind or are having trouble deciding, Town Flooring is here to help. We offer quality tile in Charlottesville, VA as well as remodeling services. We service Charlottesville, VA, Earlysville, VA, Ruckersville, VA, Gordonsville, VA, Louisa, VA, Orange, VA, Ivy, VA, and Fluvanna, VA all from our tile store in Charlottesville, VA. Contact us or visit our store today.