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What is Porcelain Paving?

Eelinn Vanquaethem Aug 15, 2019
Design Flooring Garden Landscaping Paving Recycle

Paving has long been a popular choice for garden patios. There’s your regular ceramic tile, maybe a manufactured concrete or a classic brick. The wide range of colours and textures paving has to offer makes your dream garden a little more accessible. The tile we, at EnviroBuild, would recommend would have to be the highly practical porcelain paving tiles.  

Wood style Italian luxury porcelain paving in birch

How are porcelain paving tiles made?

Finely-ground sand and feldspar are added to a refined white clay in a kiln and baked at high temperatures under great pressures of up to 500kg per cm2 minimizing cavities and voids, ensuring the porcelain tiles are dense and tough. EnviroBuild’s luxury Italian porcelain is also made with 40 per cent recycled materials and produced using energy from renewable sources.

As porcelain is less porous due to its density, it is not only resistant to water absorption, but also liquids and chemicals. Fungus growth is also mitigated, and the tiles are stain and mildew resistant. As a result, there is no need to apply a sealant, making it very low maintenance.

The density also makes porcelain extraordinarily hard-wearing and scratch-resistant. This is essential for a garden patio as heavy footfall and the scraping of garden furniture won’t damage your perfectly designed outdoor space.

On top of this, porcelain is made to have a consistently accurate size, allowing the paving to be laid with thin joints giving your garden a great modern finish.

Limestone stone effect porcelain paving used on a terrace

Why porcelain?

Unlike ceramic tiles, porcelain is less prone to frost damage and cracking in cold weather as it is less porous. The density, as mentioned, also means that porcelain tiles absorb less than 0.5 per cent of water.

When looking at the PEI rating, a system in which tiles are graded from 0-5 depending on the hardness of the tile with 5 being the hardest, porcelain rates a lot better than ceramic tiles. The latter often only have a rating of 3 and 4, while porcelain tiles tend to have one between 3 and 5.

All these benefits guarantee that porcelain has a cheaper lifecycle cost and longer longevity than most other paving tiles making it cheaper in the long run.

Even in the short run, porcelain can often be more affordable than slate, limestone or sandstone paving tiles when installation costs are included. Natural stone often requires thicker adhesive glue and the natural irregularities and thickness make it more difficult to cut. Porcelain is much faster to install as you can use a thinner adhesive. They are also lighter and due to them being thinner than a standard-sized 70mm paving slab, they are also easier to cut.

Silver stone effect porcelain paving used for an outdoor kitchen

What are the benefits of EnviroBuild’s Italian luxury porcelain paving tiles?

EnviroBuild’s luxury porcelain has been produced by NovaBell, founded by one of the founding fathers of the Italian Ceramics Industry Silvio Bellei, allowing us to provide you with the perfect authentic style for your garden. The company has been certified with the Environmental Product Declaration, Leed Compliant, Ecolablel and Breeam. Their commitment to the environment is reflected in their porcelain tiles as each tile is made with at least 40 per cent recycled material and produced using energy from renewable sources.

The Italian porcelain paving tiles use one of the most environment-friendly raw materials and rejected fired material and other by-products are reclaimed. On top of this, 100 per cent of their electricity comes from renewable sources and they also use recycled water when producing porcelain paving tiles. This makes NovaBell the ideal supplier for EnviroBuild and our environmental pledge.

The luxury Italian porcelain paving tiles also fuse the practicality of porcelain with authentic and sophisticated stone, wood and concrete finishes. The high-quality lithographic printing makes sure our contemporary concrete, traditionally polished wood and classic stone designs look authentic, as we are able to provide you with more than a hundred unique tiles. This technology has also allowed us to create a greater texture making the porcelain tiles more slip-resistant and safe for you and your family.

Silver stone effect Italian luxury porcelain paving used in a dining space

Where to begin? 

Now that you know all about porcelain paving and its benefits, you may consider it a great option for your garden patio. It can, however, still be a bit daunting with the multitude of options out there. Why not start with ordering one of our free sample packs to help you choose a colour that would best suit your style? 
You can also call us on +44 (0) 208 088 4888 or send an email to info@envirobuild.com to get quotes, guidance and technical support regarding your plans. If you don’t want to install your tiles yourself, we are also happy to recommend an installer to help.