Porcelain paving is the cool, modern cousin of other types of paving, attracting plenty of attention from homeowners who want their outdoor space to possess the same level of chic.
Porcelain paving slabs are also surprisingly durable, so if you’re thinking China cups then forget it - porcelain can give coveted granite a run for its money in terms of its strength!
The porcelain from which our paving products are created is a type of ceramic manufactured finer grain clay. And what makes it so hard-wearing is that it has been fired at temperatures much, much higher than other kinds of ceramic. This process also makes it far less porous.
It is also possible to buy porcelain paving in different finishes thanks to advances in HD printing technology, so if you want your outdoor porcelain tiles to have a granite effect or to look like wood, for example, then that is entirely possible.
The process involves printing an inkjet image of highly compressed clay tiles, then firing it at very high temperatures.
The clay and other minerals vitrify – that is, become molten – and this is what really toughens them up, making them ultra-strong.
This also means that porcelain paving slabs can be thinner than ones made from stone or concrete, which enhances their sleek appearance.
FAQs about porcelain paving
Is porcelain paving any good?
The short answer is: ‘Yes’. Porcelain paving slabs represent value for money on many levels, including:
Their strength makes them hard-wearing. They won’t fade then they will perform well in extremes of temperature.
Porcelain paving slabs can be printed with different finishes.
They are stain-resistant and easy to clean.
If it’s a high-end look you’re after, porcelain paving slabs will give it in spades.
Is porcelain good for outdoor paving?
Yes. Porcelain garden tiles are created exactly for that purpose. They are thicker than the porcelain tiles you’d use in your kitchen or bathroom, for example, and provided they are laid properly and are high quality, they will continue to look good for decades.
Is porcelain paving slippery when wet?
If you are wondering whether porcelain paving slabs are suitable to surround a swimming pool, or you’ll be able to avoid slipping on them if it rains on your patio, you can be assured that they are no slippier than those made from flamed granite or concrete, and in some cases have more grip.
Do porcelain slabs need a concrete base?
If you want to go down the traditional route then the answer is yes. But laying porcelain paving requires more cement than other pavers (a stronger bond needs to be created between paving slab and earth).
There is also an alternative called a pedestal support which provides innovative dry installation that will provide your pavers with a level surface without concrete.
Do porcelain paving slabs break easily?
No. They are extremely strong and durable.
How long should porcelain slabs last?
If installed correctly, porcelain paving slabs will continue to look good for up to 50 years.
Can you clean porcelain with a pressure washer?
Yes, you can. These tiles are very strong, so they can easily cope with the force of water from a pressure washer.
What is the best base to lay porcelain slabs?
Concrete or plastic pedestal support.
Do outdoor porcelain slabs need sealing?
Vitrified or glazed outdoor porcelain tiles are non-porous which means they do not need sealing. However, if you want to change their colour or add shine, a micro top-coat sealer can be used.
Do porcelain slabs need grouting?
Yes. You need to use an exterior paving grout for outdoor porcelain tiles.
Do porcelain slabs get hot in the sun?
Porcelain paving that has been coated with a UV-resistant layer should not get hot in the sun, making it perfect for areas where animals and small children play.
How thick should porcelain tiles be outdoors?
For outdoor use, porcelain paving slabs should only ever be 20mm.
How do you keep porcelain shiny?
Using a porcelain tile sealer will bring back the shine to your porcelain paving.
Are porcelain patios worth it?
When you take into account their durability, their water-resistance and handsome looks, porcelain paving slabs are the perfect choice for any patio. They’ll require little maintenance, be stain-resistant which is useful if you’re having an outdoor BBQ or party, and can withstand everything the great British climate throws at them.
Want to buy porcelain paving?
Upgrade your patio space today with our selection of high-performance porcelain paving.
Forward Builders’ Supplies is a recognised supplier of high-quality paving slabs and stocks a wide range of porcelain paving.
With different colour and texture options available, you are sure to find the perfect solution for your garden or home.
If you have any questions, or would like to place an order, then don’t hesitate to contact us.