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how to ship porcelain tiles

Shipping Porcelain Tiles

Discover the world of porcelain tiles, their types, benefits, and shipping considerations. Learn about glazed, unglazed, polished, and more porcelain tiles. Find out how to ship porcelain tiles and reduce costs.

Porcelain Tiles

Believe it or not, there are many options for choosing the perfect tiles for your home improvement or business projects. Porcelain is one of the many different tiles available on the market, but its unique look, durability, and resistance to the elements set it apart. Porcelain tiles fall within the category of ceramic tiles and are made from fine, dense clay. These tiles are fired at higher temperatures than their traditional ceramic counterparts. 

The production process results in durable, dense, less porous tiles and even resistant to water, stains, and wear. These unique properties make ceramic tiles an excellent choice for flooring, walls, countertops, and other surfaces. Porcelain tiles are known for their versatility, aesthetic appeal, and durability, and today can be found in various colors, finishes, styles, textures, and sizes. 

These tiles have a lengthy history dating back to ancient civilizations, with the creation process evolving over the centuries. Porcelain originated in ancient China, with skilled artisans crafting the translucent look in the ceramics. The secret to porcelain production was guarded, increasing its value on the Silk Road. 

Once these tiles reached Europe during the medieval and Renaissance periods, they became a sought-after luxury. Unable to accurately replicate the porcelain tiles brought over from Asia, Europeans eventually developed soft-paste porcelain. It took until the 18th century to imitate the hard-paste porcelain similar to the Chinese techniques. 

By the 19th and 20th centuries, there were significant developments in ceramic production techniques. This period saw a rise in advanced firing technologies and glazing techniques and marked the introduction of machinery within production. These advancements led to the successful mass production of high-quality porcelain tiles.

 In today’s world, we can reliably count on the availability of high-quality tiles perfect for interior and exterior, as well as in both business and residential settings. Within the category of porcelain tiles, there are several options to choose from. Below we discuss the various types of porcelain available today. 





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Types of Porcelain Tiles

Luckily, in the modern day, we have plenty of porcelain tile types to choose from; listed are eight popular types of porcelain tile types, their properties, and their usage. 

Glazed Porcelain: Glazed porcelain tiles are commonly used for but are not limited to, wall and floor applications. As the name implies, glazed tiles have a layer of glaze across the top that is available in various colors, patterns, and textures. 

Unglazed Porcelain: This type has a more natural and matte appearance and does not have the surface glaze feature that the glazed porcelain tiles have and are, therefore, more slip resistant than the glazed tiles. Unglazed porcelain tiles are standard in commercial spaces and high-traffic outdoor applications. 

Polished Porcelain: Polished porcelain tiles showcase a glossy and reflective appearance achieved through polishing and buffing during production. The result is a sleek and sophisticated appearance, but the downside is that the same polished look can make scratches and wear more evident on the surface. 

Full-Body Porcelain: Full-Body porcelain tiles are exactly as they sound. This tile’s color and design span the entire surface’s thickness. As a result, full-body tiles are very durable, and wearing, chipping, or damage is less likely to be noticeable. 

Double-Loaded Porcelain: Double-loaded porcelain tiles are dense and durable, with consistent colors and patterns throughout their thickness. “Double-loaded” refers to the amount of material pressed into the body of a tile. A double-loaded tile results when two layers are pressed into the tile, resulting in a more robust tile. As with the other tile types listed above, the double-loaded porcelain tiles are very durable, great for high-traffic areas, and have high versatility in design. Another great feature of this type of tile is easy to clean and maintain. 

Rectified Porcelain Tiles: These tiles undergo a rectification process, meaning they are cut after firing to ensure straight and exact edges. This process results in uniform tiles with accurate dimensions and sharp edges. These tiles are commonly available in larger sizes, and despite this, they can be installed in areas with very thin grout lines, resulting in a sleek and modern aesthetic. They can be used for floors, walls, and indoor or outdoor surfaces; they are very versatile. Installation requires a high skill level, so consulting with a professional beforehand is often wise. 

Textured Porcelain Tiles: Textured tiles mimic natural surface textures like stone, wood, and fabric. They also provide slip resistance and have an interesting appearance. 

Large Format Porcelain Tiles: There is a significant size difference between large format tiles and traditional sized tiles. Larger tiles offer a sleek and modern look with fewer grout lines. These tiles are an excellent option for creating a more open-looking space. 


Porcelain Tile Benefits 

Durability: Generally, porcelain tiles are highly durable and resistant to scratches, wear, chipping, and other damages. By design, they can withstand high foot traffic and heavy usage, making them great for indoor and outdoor spaces. 

Water Resistance: Luckily, these tiles have low absorption rates, keeping them resistant to water damage. This makes porcelain tile an excellent choice for bathrooms, kitchens, outdoor spaces, and high-moisture areas. 

Stain Resistance: Another benefit of such dense materials is that the density allows for resistance to spills and stains. Consequently, porcelain tiles are easy to clean and maintain. They are a smart choice for areas prone to staining and spills. 

Heat and Fire Resistance: Porcelain tiles are great for stovetop areas, fireplaces, and other heated areas.

Fade Resistance: Porcelain tiles can maintain their appearance and color throughout time despite UV rays or sunlight exposure. 

Versatility: As mentioned above, porcelain tiles are in various colors, textures, sizes, and patterns. They can complement a variety of styles, aesthetics, and designs. Among the many other applications listed, they can be used for kitchens, backsplashes, showers, and pools.  

Low Maintenance: Regular sweeping and the occasional mopping is sufficient to keep porcelain tiles in excellent condition. These tiles are resistant to many potential threats, meaning they have a long lifespan which offers excellent value for the cost. 

Allergen Resistance: These tiles do not host allergens, dust mites, or dander, unlike other flooring materials. They are an excellent solution for people with allergies. They also do not emit (VOCs) volatile organic compounds, which goes even to improve the air quality. 

Environmental Benefits: Porcelain tiles are made from naturally derived materials, and some are even created using recycled materials. Their lengthy lifespan reduces the need for frequent replacements, which helps sustainability efforts. 

Freeze Resistant: Frost-resistant porcelain tiles are great for outdoor use in cold climates. The material can withstand freezing temperatures without cracking. 

Increased property value: Well-installed, high-quality porcelain tiles can enhance the property, thereby increasing the property value.

Cost to Ship

The overall cost to ship porcelain tiles varies greatly depending on the following factors: quantity, weight, dimensions, shipping distance, shipping method, carrier rates, and additional services. 

Quantity/Weight: Cost typically increases with higher quantities and heavier weight. It is essential to be accurate when relaying these details for booking your shipment. Providing exact numbers helps prevent fines. 

Dimensions: Large and odd-shaped tiles may require more space on the truck which will also increase the costs. 

Shipping Distance: Longer distances between the point of origin and the destination may also result in higher costs. The distance between the point of origin and the destination dictates the price. 

Shipping Method: Choosing (LTL) less-than-truckload or (FTL) full truckload shipping impacts shipping costs. LTL is ideal for smaller quantities, and FTL is better for larger loads. 

Freight Class: Freight class is based on density, value, and fragility. The higher the freight class, the more expensive the freight. 

Carrier Rates: Do not count on carrier rates being the same across the board; expect the opposite. Different carriers have different pricing structures and rates. It is wise to obtain quotes from multiple carriers to compare pricing.  

Additional Services: Any additional services, such as a liftgate delivery, inside delivery, residential delivery, and expedited shipping, add to the overall cost. 

Insurance: Purchasing freight insurance is ideal and can increase shipping costs significantly depending on your chosen plan. 

Season and Demand: Seasonal fluctuations and overall market demand directly influence shipping costs. Awareness of potential seasonal fluctuations in the home improvement and construction industry can indirectly impact pricing.

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LTL shipping involves combining multiple small shipments from different customers onto one truck, allowing each customer to share the shipment cost. Trust the experts at FreightCenter to give you the best prices and the most comprehensive options for all your LTL freight shipping needs.

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Truckload shipping, also known as full truckload (FTL), is a transportation option for freight that requires the entire trucks trailer space. Unlike LTL shipping, FTL shipping is reserved for larger commodities that exceed LTL weight and size limits, typically weighing more than 20,000 pounds or having dimensions that exceed 12 feet in length, 8 feet in width, and 8 feet in height. We deliver optimized solutions for full or partial truckloads and competitive dry van, flatbed, and refrigerated freight pricing. We can cover your full truckload shipping needs.

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