Tile flooring is a favorite choice for homeowners to create a beautiful new look in their homes. The two main choices often come down to travertine vs porcelain tile because these tiles protect your home from dirt, water, and stains. 

Many people think that tile floorings are simple enough–as long as it looks good on display! But what if you’re not sure how to pick out which kind of stone tiles would be best suited for your needs both aesthetically and functionally?

There are factors to consider when choosing between these two types of tiles for your home. Including cost, durability, maintenance, and appearance. Read on to discover more about these tiles so you can confidently choose the right one for your needs!

Travertine Tile Overview

Travertine is a kind of limestone that occurs naturally from hot mineral springs. It is often obtained from Mexico, Turkey, and Italy quarries. After being extracted, the Travertine is cut into slabs before being cut into final tiles and treated, depending on the tile’s unique finishes.

Thus, travertine tile is a type of natural stone flooring. Natural holes in travertine tile give it a distinct appearance and feel that is attractive. Its various finishes include honed, brushed, and polished, each of which impacts the final appearance. 

Porcelain Tile Overview

Porcelain is a form of ceramic that is made from finer-grained clay. The tiles are then baked at very high temperatures in a kiln to remove the water and make them hard and thick. It’s generally denser than ceramic, contributing to its imperviousness and durability. 

High-definition digital printing technology is used to create porcelain tiles that appear like other types of stone. It is shaped by the producer based on the design. Porcelain tile is frequently glazed to give it a distinct color, pattern, or design. Still, other techniques incorporate color and design into the tiles. 

Travertine vs. Porcelain Tile: Cost Comparison

Porcelain tile generally costs $2 to $10 per square foot in supplies. Expect to pay between $2 and $3 per square foot on the low end. On the top end, you may anticipate paying between $7 and $10 per square foot.

Since Travertine is a natural stone and must be quarried, it costs more than porcelain tiles. Travertine tile costs about $15 per square foot on average. Travertine may also be found for as little as $5 per square foot, whereas other choices might cost up to $30 per square foot.

Although Travertine is more expensive than porcelain, it is cheaper than other stone tile choices. Travertine tile is more affordable than marble and granite, allowing you to get the premium look of real stone at a lesser cost.

Porcelain tile is somewhat less expensive than Travertine, making it a better choice for budget-conscious households. 

Remember that this is simply the material cost; it does not include adhesives, installation fees, or other supplies.

Installation Cost

Both travertine and porcelain tiles are not suitable for self-installation. To assure high-quality and long-lasting tile flooring, seek the assistance of a professional installer. It’s best to hire a skilled installer, especially for Travertine, or work with a contractor.

On average, it will cost between $4 and $20 per square foot for porcelain tile installation in your house. At the same time, it is between $10 and $30 per square foot to have travertine tile professionally installed. The average is about $15 per square foot.

When you include the tile flooring, these prices might easily reach $30 or more per square foot installed. If you want a less expensive installation, choose porcelain tile, which may easily cost half the price of travertine installation.

Travertine vs. Porcelain Tile: Durability Comparison

Travertine tile is also highly durable; however, one disadvantage is that it is permeable. It absorbs water due to its porous nature, which can produce stains. When exposed to air and moisture, the holes in the travertine structure may undergo increased wear and tear.

If you want to put Travertine in a high-moisture area, such as a bathroom, you must first seal the flooring to prevent water absorption.

While porcelain tile and ceramic tile are similar, It does not crack and break easily. Since it is made from denser clay, it is more resistant to harm. It is also sealed to be watertight, allowing it to be put in bathrooms. Thus, you won’t have to worry about your floor staining or becoming weak or damaged if it comes into contact with water.

Porcelain tile is also more scratch-resistant than other forms of flooring. However, it is not fully scratch-resistant; thus, avoid actions that might cause scratching, such as pushing furniture over the tile. 

Travertine vs. Porcelain Tile: Appearance Comparison

Travertine tile flooring has a distinct natural appearance, with its colors and patterns vary from tile to tile. It comes in various hues, most of which are neutrals. Popular travertine tile colors are white, gold, tan, cream, silver, ivory, and walnut. It may also have a rusty red color with black veining throughout the tiles.

They are also available in various finishes, including polished, honed, brushed, and naturally tumbled, determining whether the texture is rough or shiny. There are also many edge designs to choose from. It is available in various sizes, ranging from 4 inches by 4 inches to 24 inches by 24 inches.

Porcelain provides a bit more variation in terms of aesthetic possibilities. You may make it seem like other materials, such as real stone, Travertine, or different types of hardwood flooring. Also, you may choose full-body porcelain that is colored all the way through. In contrast, glazed porcelain is colored only on the surface, leaving the body white.

Porcelain tile is also available in various colors, from brilliant white to dark ebony, allowing you to be more creative with your design. This flooring comes in multiple sizes, ranging from huge square tiles to long rectangular tiles that seem like boards.

Travertine vs. Porcelain Tile: Maintenance Comparison

Cleaning porcelain and travertine tile daily is comparable. Sweeping or dust mopping the floors regularly maintains them clean. For extensive cleaning without causing harm, both tile flooring offers several alternatives.

How to Maintain Travertine Tile?

It is not difficult to keep your travertine tiles clean regularly. Follow the instructions to keep them well-maintained. 

  • Use a broom or vacuum cleaner intended for hard floors to pick up dirt, dust, pet hair, and debris on hard floors. 
  • Use a light soap and water solution or get natural stone flooring cleaning products. 
  • Never totally wet the floor. You don’t want to saturate your floor since it’s porous. If you need to clean your travertine tile deep, avoid soaking it with water since moisture can produce stains. 
  • Avoid using harsh chemical cleaners such as acidic or alkaline cleaners. If Travertine is used on the exterior, it should be washed at least once a year.
  • Frequent sealing is required to keep moisture out since travertine tile is porous. The frequency with which you must apply sealer is primarily determined by the amount of foot activity in the region. 
  • Use caulk or epoxy to seal and fix any cracks or fractures.

How to Maintain Porcelain Tile?

Porcelain tile is one of the simplest forms of flooring to maintain. Unglazed porcelain is more slip-resistant, but glazed porcelain is simpler to clean.

  • A moist mop is all that is needed to clean porcelain tiles. 
  • Use vinegar and water or a porcelain tile cleaning product for deep cleaning. Apply it with a tile mop or a soft-bristled brush, and rinse.
  • Replace any damaged porcelain tile because, typically, you cannot repair them anymore. 

Travertine vs. Porcelain Tile: Final Showdown

You may have an idea of which sort of tile flooring is better. However, learn more about their other characteristics to understand better what is ideal for you.

  • Water-resistance: Both tile flooring is water-resistant, although extended exposure to moisture causes travertine tiles discoloration.
  • Lifespan: Porcelain tile is one of the most long-lasting forms of flooring. When properly maintained, high-quality porcelain tile has an average lifespan of 75 to 100 years. On the other hand, Travertine may last for well over a century.
  • Applications: Because porcelain is water-resistant, you may use it in baths and kitchens. At the same time, Travertine is more resistant to high-temperature changes than other forms of stone. Thus, it is often utilized in living rooms, internal or external wall cladding, and foyers, among other places. 
  • Environmental Sustainability: Travertine is somewhat eco-friendly; in the long run, it is a renewable resource. Also, porcelain tile is very eco-friendly because it is constructed of natural materials and has a very long lifespan.

Both porcelain tile and Travertine are high-quality, attractive floors that would look great in any home. If you’re having trouble deciding, think about what you’re looking for on flooring to help limit down your options.

If you’ve got a greater budget and want one-of-a-kind natural stone flooring that can last a century or more, consider Travertine.

If you prefer something other than a natural stone appearance, porcelain offers additional options. It is a wonderful alternative for individuals looking for an appealing bare flooring solution that is easy to clean and maintain, cheap, and highly durable.

Editorial Contributors
Matt Greenfield

Matt Greenfield

Matt Greenfield is an experienced writer specializing in home improvement topics. He has a passion for educating and empowering homeowners to make informed decisions about their properties. Matt's writing focuses on a range of topics, including windows, flooring, HVAC, and construction materials. With a background in construction and home renovation, Matt is well-versed in the latest trends and techniques in the industry. His articles offer practical advice and expert insights that help readers tackle their home improvement projects with confidence. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a seasoned professional, Matt's writing is sure to provide valuable guidance and inspiration.

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