What is the Difference Between Tile and Ceramic?
What is the Difference Between Tile and Ceramic?

What is the Difference Between Tile and Ceramic?

If you are not sufficiently familiar with the world of tiles and ceramics, you might not know the exact differences between these two products and could confuse them. Knowing the differences between these two allows you to choose the right product with full awareness. We are now going to discuss the difference between tile and ceramic. Stay with us until the end of this article to understand the differences between tiles and ceramics.

What is Tile? What are the Types of Tiles?

Tile is a wall covering made from clay, which is prepared by molding and then firing in a high-temperature kiln. In subsequent stages, the surface is coated with a glass-like material called glaze to enhance its strength and beauty. Tile glaze can be matte, polished, plain, or patterned. Tile was first made in Konya in the 13th century AH, and changes have been made to it over various periods. Types of tiles include: Wall Tile The kiln temperature for making wall tiles is lower compared to other tiles, resulting in higher water absorption and a shinier glaze. If the water absorption in wall tiles meets the standards, it is not considered a drawback. Wall tiles should not be used for exterior walls and building facades due to their high water absorption. Floor tiles can be used on walls, but not vice versa. Floor Tile These tiles are used to cover the floors of buildings. Floor tiles are more durable than wall tiles. Since floor tiles are subjected to high traffic and friction, they must be resistant to abrasion. Water permeability of floor tiles is also lower because they are fired at a higher temperature than wall tiles. Additionally, floor tiles are thicker than wall tiles. Porcelain Tile This type of tile is made from white clay and is also known as porcelain ceramic. Porcelain tiles require high pressure and temperature for firing, resulting in features such as low permeability and high resistance to breakage and abrasion. These tiles are highly resistant to abrasion, freezing, and chemicals, making them suitable for high-traffic areas. Most porcelain tiles have a white back, although sometimes it may not be white.

What is Ceramic?

Before discussing the differences between tile and ceramic, it is necessary to understand ceramic. Ceramic is essentially the same as tile, but its glaze layer is combined with other materials like inorganic and mineral substances. Ceramics are used to cover the floors of buildings and various structures, and they are fired at a higher temperature than tiles. This temperature change increases the strength of ceramic compared to tile, making ceramics more resistant. Finally, ceramics are produced in different sizes and various designs. Typically, ceramics are water-resistant and are used to cover kitchens, bathrooms, and toilets. There are different types of ceramics, including porcelain floor ceramics, glass ceramics, and slab wall ceramics.

Properties of Ceramics

Ceramics have a wide range of very hard materials in their structure, which determine their characteristics. Most ceramics exhibit the following properties:
  • High hardness
  • Usually brittle and fragile
  • High melting point
  • High chemical resistance
  • Low electrical and thermal conductivity
  • Poor formability
  • High elasticity
  • Optical transparency for different wavelengths
  • High compressive strength

What is the Thickness of Wall Ceramics?

One of the most important differences between ceramics and tiles is their thickness, which we will discuss here for porcelain ceramics. These ceramics are available in thicknesses of 6, 9, 10, 11.5, and 20 millimeters. Large-sized slab ceramics are widely used in facades. These ceramics are made in board and sheet forms and are available in significant sizes in the market. Many people doubt the quality and material of slab ceramics, but they have proven their quality and performance and are available in various colors, designs, and sizes. Slab ceramics are divided into several types, the most important of which are slab wall ceramics and porcelain ceramics. The thinner the slab ceramics, the lighter they are and easier to transport. Ceramics with a thickness of 6 millimeters, despite being thin, have excellent resistance. These ceramics have layers of impermeable glaze, and they can also be used in humid environments. Slab ceramics come in a wide variety that you can order based on your taste. Slab wall ceramics have various designs that can be applied to a part of the wall like a painting. Overall, one of the newest and most popular ceramics available is the 6-millimeter porcelain slab ceramic, which is available in our collection with the highest quality and the best price. You only need to visit the relevant sections of our website to place an order. These ceramics are very lightweight compared to other thicknesses and can be easily used. Some of the advantages of 6mm porcelain slab ceramics include:
  • Excellent resistance to weather conditions
  • No effect of heat or cold on it
  • Water resistance
  • Hard to scratch and damage
  • Easy to clean
  • Non-porous
  • Lighter weight and easier to transport

How is Ceramic Made?

Now that you are familiar with ceramics, it is necessary to understand how they are made since the main difference between tile and ceramic lies in this stage. The raw materials needed to make ceramics include clay, aluminum oxide, tungsten carbide, silicon carbide, and kaolinite. These raw materials are mixed with water to create a mixture that can be shaped and molded. Working with ceramic after it is made is difficult, so it must be shaped beforehand. The desired shape is dried and heated in a kiln. The heating process provides the energy to form new chemical bonds and minerals.

What is the Difference Between Tile and Ceramic?

As you have understood, ceramics and tiles are two important products for strengthening and beautifying buildings. Despite their similarities, they have many differences, which lead to different applications. Thus, you should know how to distinguish porcelain ceramics from other ceramics and tiles. The differences between tile and ceramic start with their components, but if you are looking for more detailed differences, consider the following points:

Appearance Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Ceramic is essentially the same as tile but has different glazing. The appearance difference does not end there; the different baking times for these two products create visual differences. Due to its higher firing temperature, ceramic has a darker color than tile and is resistant to sunlight.

Thickness Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Another visual difference between tile and ceramic is their thickness. The specific glazing process on ceramics makes them thicker than tiles, increasing their strength. Among the ceramics available in the market, porcelain ceramics are the most resistant.

Application Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Due to their different structures, tile and ceramic do not have the same applications. Tiles are lighter and less durable, making them suitable for wall decoration. In contrast, ceramics are used for flooring due to their resistance. Another factor contributing to their different installation locations is that ceramics are poor conductors of electricity and heat, making them suitable for energy and heat retention in buildings. Ceramics are compatible with various weather conditions and are easy to clean, making them ideal for places like hotels, hospitals, lobbies, bathrooms, kitchens, and building floors.

Structural Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Both tile and ceramic consist of a base and a glaze coating, but their raw materials differ. Ceramic glaze is made from inorganic materials and minerals such as clay, feldspar, and sand, which makes ceramics easier to clean than tiles.

Firing Temperature Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Another difference is the firing temperature, which affects their structure. Ceramics are fired at a higher temperature than tiles, leading to differences in texture and color.

Price Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Tile and ceramic, as fundamental building materials, have very different prices. Some tiles used in constructing towers and residential areas are very expensive, and the same applies to ceramics. Thus, tiles and ceramics are available at various price ranges in the market, allowing you to purchase according to your needs and budget.

Production Method Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

The production method of tiles and ceramics differs. Tile paste is compacted and fired at 1200-1300 degrees Celsius to become bisque. Then, it is re-fired at 1100-1260 degrees Celsius after glazing to stabilize. On the other hand, ceramic is single-fired, meaning the initial paste and glaze are fired together at 1650 degrees Celsius to become bisque.

Environmental Considerations (HSE) Between Tile and Ceramic

As the world becomes more aware, using materials that do not harm nature is crucial. Practical materials should be environmentally friendly and easily absorbable without causing issues. Eco-friendly materials include stone, gypsum, sand, and cement-based materials, along with clay tiles, marble mosaic tiles, non-glass ceramics, and mosaic tiles.

Variety Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Tiles have various designs and colors and are more diverse than ceramics. Although efforts are being made to increase ceramic diversity, tiles still offer more options, making tile selection more challenging than ceramics.

Fire Resistance Difference Between Tile and Ceramic

Ceramics, especially porcelain ceramics, are highly fire-resistant and classified as A1. Moreover, porcelain ceramics are resistant to sunlight and do not fade.


In this article, we explored the differences between tile and ceramic. As you can see, the main differences lie in their production stages. These structural differences lead to different applications for each, with tiles and ceramics being used in specific locations accordingly.