External porcelain tiles are recommended for all outdoor areas, including the poolside. Check more information:
For those looking for resistance and security outside the home, using porcelain tiles outdoors is an excellent option. This type of coating is the best alternative for gardens with a swimming pool, balconies, in front of commercial establishments, on sidewalks, etc.
However, when the time comes to design external areas, it is common for some doubts to arise. So, you must make a good choice and learn to take all the necessary care. We answer the main questions about external porcelain tiles and present some tips to inspire your project and harmonize environments. Shall we, then?
Table of Contents
What is external Porcelain?
Porcelain tile is one of the best coatings for outdoor areas. In addition to being more sustainable and having bacteriostatic characteristics, i.e., not accumulating micro-organisms and not allowing them to reproduce, porcelain tile is good because it allows different combinations. The result is beautiful decorations in outdoor environments.
However, not all types of this coating can be used outside the home. Porcelain tiles for external areas need to have some important characteristics to guarantee resistance, safety, and functionality – we will talk more about them later.
Generally, coatings that help prevent slipping and/or have a rougher texture are classified as external porcelain tiles. They are easily identified by the acronym EXT and have this texture because, in their manufacture, a grain is added to the enamel, which guarantees the non-slip effect.
The idea is that the shoes of people walking around cause friction on the ground, preventing falls.
In which Situations to Use External Porcelain Tiles?
Outdoor porcelain tiles can be used in almost any outdoor setting. Pool areas, laundries, garages, ballrooms, balconies, backyards, gourmet kitchens with barbecues, leisure spaces, places close to garden decks, etc.
In practice, in any place where there is no total coverage, or there are large openings, it is recommended to use special porcelain tiles for external environments.
Heads up! Just avoid applying external porcelain tiles on walls and facades, as the high coefficient of friction creates a surface that is more difficult to clean. In addition, the non-slip texture of external porcelain tiles is not necessary since walls and facades are not stepped on.
What are the Main Advantages of this Porcelain Finish?
The use of external porcelain tiles brings several benefits to your works and constructions. See below which are the main ones:
1. It offers several decoration possibilities
There are many possibilities for decoration with external porcelain tiles. Some alternatives reproduce burnt cement, and others interpret wood or marble, etc. Therefore, it is possible to use creativity to develop beautiful projects.
External porcelain tiles can be chosen according to the decorative style of the environment or the personal taste of the resident or owner of the space.
2. It has High Resistance
External porcelain tiles are highly weather resistant. This is very important, considering that it is on the outside, exposed to the sun, rain, winds, and other storms. It does not smudge or fade even under constant and strong sun action.
Since the objective is to install the coating on the floor, it is also important to choose an external porcelain tile that is adequate to support the number of people, vehicles, and equipment that will circulate through the site.
3. Provides Very Low Water Absorption
Another advantage of porcelain tiles for external areas is the fact that they practically do not absorb water. This makes the material more mechanically resistant and also easier to clean.
Due to the low water absorption, this type of porcelain tile is ideal for outdoor areas with a pool. In this case, it can be used both to cover the bathroom space itself and its surroundings, according to the pool size.
4. It has a Surface that Helps Prevent Accidents
As we explained, the external porcelain tile helps to prevent slipping. This means that people can walk through spaces without so much fear of falling. There are porcelain tiles with abrasive faces that help to increase friction with footwear.
This is very important, especially in homes where there are elderly people and children among the residents. The choice of porcelain tiles must be made even more carefully in situations of this type.
5. It has Bacteriostatic Characteristics
External porcelain tiles also have bacteriostatic properties. This means that they do not kill micro-organisms, but they do not allow them to spread around the site.
Because of this feature, fungi, molds, mites, bacteria, and viruses do not proliferate. Thus, porcelain tiles reduce the chances that people living in a certain environment will have diseases.
6. It is Sustainable
Porcelain tile is not a natural material and, therefore, did not result from undue exploitation of the environment.
Choice of Porcelain Tiles for External Areas: Aspects to be Evaluated
Important features such as functionality and safety determine the ideal type of porcelain tile for outdoor environments. In addition, details related to the aesthetics of the piece must also be considered so that the project is harmonious and pleasing to the eye. See the main aspects to evaluate during the choice:
Is it Slippery?
Material selection should be based primarily on the coefficient of friction, which needs to be greater than 0.4 to ensure stability and reduce the risk of slipping, even on wet surfaces.
In certain outdoor porcelain tiles, the surface finishes called EXT and NAT follow this prerequisite — with slightly abrasive faces — unlike lines with a polished or satin finish, which guarantee a place in interior decoration, but are not appropriate for open environments.
Type of Grout
Another fundamental characteristic is the reduction of the porcelain grout that connects the pieces since the placement can be much closer than on other floors. The correct application ensures that the grout space is smaller and accumulates less slime, facilitating cleaning.
Rectified porcelain tiles stand out for having straight and precise edges that reduce the distance between pieces. This not only reduces the amount of grout but also provides more uniformity at the time of installation. Due to the perfect alignment, it is a suitable finish to create more homogeneous surfaces without marked divisions.
People who dream of a single, seamless floor will definitely like this solution. When applied using identical pieces, that is, with the same color or print and with adequate workmanship, rectified porcelain tiles appear to have no seams.
Size and Shape
Just like the coatings indicated for indoor use, porcelain tiles for outdoor areas can also be found in different sizes and formats, so it is worth paying attention to which one is best suited for the environment.
The ample measurements of the pieces add a differential to the project and generate visual amplitude, which is an advantage when facing the challenge of revamping lean spaces. Another positive point is that large porcelain tiles require less grout.
Colors, Prints, and Textures
Other important aspects when choosing the best porcelain tiles to decorate the outdoor area are the colors and textures that best match the decoration style you want to apply to the project.
Considering the aesthetic characteristics, you can choose either neutral tones — providing sophistication, easy harmonization, and naturalness — or porcelain tiles with the appearance and texture of stones — bringing exclusivity and an extra refinement, in addition to referring to the elements present in nature.
Another style widely used in outdoor areas is wood tones, often seen on decks, for example. Portobello supplies several lines of porcelain tiles that reproduce wood, with pieces that generate perfect replicas of this highly valued raw material.
In addition to covering floors, wooden porcelain tiles can also cover facades and generate vertical panels on walls and external walls. The cost-effectiveness is guaranteed, and the project owner will still have a sustainable material composing his residence, with high resistance and beauty.
What are the Most Suitable Mortars and Grouts for External Porcelain Tiles?
In addition to choosing the appropriate porcelain tile for the outdoor environment, when designing outdoor spaces, it is necessary to pay attention to the ideal mortar for the outdoor porcelain tile. Preference should be given to a product suitable for this type of coating to avoid headaches in the future.
How to Lay External Porcelain Tiles?
The laying of porcelain tiles outdoors is done in the same way as indoors. In general, the only special care that must be taken is in relation to the weather on the day of application.
It is not recommended to carry out the process on a date when there is a forecast for rain, for example. This is because moisture can interfere with the texture and drying of the mortar and grout, causing damage to the work.
The step-by-step procedure for installing external porcelain tiles is as follows:
- Check the square and pagination of the floor
- Apply the mortar
- Apply the porcelain tile on the site
- Finish with the grout
It is important to be careful to double-glue pieces measuring 30×30 cm or more. That is, the sticky mass must be placed on the back of the board and on the laying base.
Special Care with Porcelain Tiles in the External Area
To carry out the heaviest cleaning in the post-construction period, some products ideal for porcelain tiles can be used, such as neutral detergent and creamy soap.
As for everyday cleaning, only detergent diluted in water is enough to clean the external porcelain tile. To prepare this cleaning solution, just dilute a tablespoon of neutral detergent in five liters of water. After applying it to the external porcelain tiles, just rub the surface with a brush or broom with soft bristles.
In external areas, another very common way to clean porcelain tiles on a daily basis is with fan-shaped jet pressure washers. For heavy cleaning, you can use products like CIF, Veja Chlorine Active, or Creamy Saponaceous. Any one of them must be diluted in water and used in its neutral version. The application involves using a damp cloth in this solution and removing excesses with a dry cloth.
The porcelain tile cleaning process, in any area, is relatively easy and very practical. The first step is taken right after installation when it is necessary to clean with a sponge and soap to remove the mist formed on the coating in order to prevent stains.
Porcelain Tile for the Outdoor Area: Cladding and Decorating!
When it comes to architecture and decoration, the possibilities are endless. Therefore, use it to transform the external area into a welcoming environment, which allows the user to relax and receive friends and family.
There are several different colors and textures of porcelain tiles for the outdoor area that help create beautiful open spaces full of sophistication and rich in eye-catching details.
Below, we present some ideas for porcelain tiles for the outdoor area to inspire the creation of your next project, following the best trends in architecture and decoration.
Porcelain that Interprets Wood
Porcelain tiles that represent wood are a good option for those who want a space that mixes elements of nature with other styles of decoration. With it, you can create a rustic decoration, combining tones of wood with other elements of nature, such as a rustic gourmet area, or even create an industrial style space, which combines wood with metal elements, in black colors, for example.
For the pool area, it is possible to reproduce the famous decks next to the beach with other elements that refer to the beach, such as coconut trees, a vertical garden, and natural-style furniture.
Porcelain that Represents Natural Stones
Natural stones imprint great beauty on any project, bringing more sophistication and unparalleled beauty to any project. However, its direct extraction from nature can cause environmental problems and is not at all sustainable.
An economical and sustainable option is to invest in porcelain tiles that interpret natural stones with beautiful details and unique colors. In one project, they can be used in different ways, such as on countertops in outdoor areas, on the floor, on walls near swimming pools, at entrances to establishments, etc.
Porcelain that Interprets Burnt Cement
Burnt cement is widely used in the industrial style of decoration and in the rustic one as well. By choosing burnt cement porcelain tiles, you can deliver the same beauty to the project, with greater strength and quality than burnt cement, which requires a series of requirements to look good in outdoor areas in the long term.
Another disadvantage is that cement burned in humid environments makes the floor very slippery, which is not recommended for external areas. In addition, if it is not applied correctly, it can suffer from cracks and compromise the aesthetics of the environment.
Tips to Complement the Decoration of the Outdoor Area
In addition to porcelain tiles for outdoor areas, bet on comfortable furniture and invest in decoration items that reflect the style of the residents. The choice of models should prioritize comfort, practicality, and harmonization with the entire residence — or construction, in the case of companies and commercial establishments.
We selected some aspects that should be evaluated, in addition to tips for harmonizing the environment. Check out:
Choose the Most Suitable Materials
In general terms, wooden, synthetic fiber, and aluminum furniture stands out in the modern decor and gives the environment a natural and relaxing feel. However, care must be taken when choosing furniture made from these materials.
Wood, for example, even from species such as maçaranduba, pine, or oak, must undergo treatment before being installed. The most popular are glazing or acrylic layering. Check with the store if the wood is already treated and invest in good quality materials to get the most out of the furniture.
Like wood, aluminum requires care and maintenance, even though it is more resistant to weather phenomena. The tip is to avoid prolonged exposure to chlorine (used in swimming pools) and choose lighter colors in order not to wear out the paint.
Synthetic fiber ensures a more rustic look and is on the rise in decoration. The finish, which is reminiscent of straw, can bring a refined and cool look to the environment. The material is also more resistant when compared to natural fibers and ensures ease in the cleaning process.
Think about Setting Up the Space
In addition to porcelain tiles for outdoor areas, bet on comfortable and functional furniture, such as ottomans and loungers, but do not overdo the quantity. A very crowded environment is exactly the opposite of what is sought in open and more relaxed areas.
An interesting idea is the choice of a good table. Center models, for example, can have several features, such as resting glasses, plates, books, decorative items, and other objects. The same goes for sideboards or buffets, which allow you to support trays with bottles and delicacies at parties/events.
Use of Vegetation
Nature is another aspect that you should preserve and emphasize, as well as sustainability and the environment. Grow plants, flowers, and fruits of the most varied species, and if there is space left, take the opportunity to set up beds for the cultivation of fresh spices.
Prefer sun and wind-resistant and low-maintenance species such as lavender, orchids, ferns, and asparagus. You can also place some colorful vases around the place, as well as lamps or candles to create a harmonious atmosphere.
Fabrics that Add Texture
Regarding fabrics used in upholstery and cushions, invest in waterproof materials. The most modern models are not hard, dull, and uncomfortable like the ones of yesteryear. The current market offers weaves with varied textures, prints, and shades, all durable and easy to clean.
Do not be afraid to bet on colors and different styles to compose the environment and make it personalized. The closer it is to the customer’s taste and style, the greater the satisfaction during use. Take the opportunity to see our content with decoration tips betting on colors and pillow prints, with infinite possibilities of mixtures.
For building ideas about how to build homes in Park View City, please visit our website.