Slate tile is a prominent natural stone tile with an air of reputation and a track record for durability. Because of its durability, if you use it as floor tile or roof, the slate tile will most likely not have to be changed for 50 years or more. Effectively mounted, slate additionally makes dependable floor covering.

slate tile
Process of laying slate roof tiles on the roof of an hilly area building by the workers. Photo credit: @Yaman2407

Slate is a metamorphic rock with reasonably weak bonds between layers. When slate is used as a floor covering material, it should be set on a solid surface with mortar for installation to resist damages.

Natural slate can bring one-of-a-kind and powerful appeal to flooring installation, integrating the practical sturdiness of tough tile with the breathtaking significance of natural stone. There are both downsides and benefits to the use of this product, which vary depending on the setting where it is being installed. 

If the slate is best for a particular area’s use and needs, recognizing the disadvantages and pros can help you decide.

Pros of Slate Tile

Slate floor covering in all its forms has many benefits, yet it will carry out much better in some areas than in others.

pros and cons of slate tile
Closeup shot of Indian black color old roofing slate tile


One of the most robust standards all-natural stone flooring materials, slate has integral resilience that makes it immune to fractures, scratches, breaks, and chips. 

In some environments, it does have to be secured against spots regularly. Still, if properly maintained, slate can last for decades and look excellent without having to be eliminated or changed. 

When sealed frequently, it can be an exceptional floor covering material in the bathroom and kitchen. It may give several years of service, whereas other floor coverings may call for several substitutes. It is usually an excellent floor covering product for heavy-traffic areas.

Unique Look: 

There are countless intense shades as well as shade combinations offered when choosing slate flooring tiles. The natural charm of slate can show up in distinct ways in each rock. This indicates that every flooring will certainly have its very own one-of-a-kind appearance, an item of earth-born creativity.

There is a wide variety of solid shades and multicolored slate products available to match virtually any type of decorative setting you want to achieve. 

slate slabs
Slate Slabs Texture Wall Background. Pattern of black slate wall

Some kinds have wildly different colors, while others are much more suppressed; however, the appearance will always be distinct. Your choices raise thanks to the schedule of many cement shades that can enhance or contrast with the tiles themselves. 

This uniqueness can make slate an excellent option for apparent locations, such as entranceways or large kitchens. It is less advantageous in hardly ever seen bedrooms or spaces that are mainly covered with carpets.

Property Value: 

Slate is considered a relatively high-end floor covering product. Its first price can be pretty high, especially for high-grade products. For this reason, the slate may increase the worth of a whole house. This is particularly true when set up in locations such as the kitchen and bathroom or in entranceways where it is quickly evident to visitors.

slate tile on the patio
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Regatta Exports

Repair is possible: 

Sometimes, a floor tile might be harmed due to severe effects, natural damaging, weathering, or molting. Unlike other natural stones, slate tiles are reasonably effortless to get rid of as well as change. However, it will be easier to replace broken slates if you actually saved leftover tiles from the original installment. 

Because slate tends to vary in color and appearance, it can be tough to match brand-new tiles to the old ones if they weren’t produced from the same set of stone. Do not expect a brand-new slate bought years after the original installation to be an ideal suit for shade or pattern.

Adapts to radiant heat systems: 

Slate floor covering and various other types of all-natural stone are fantastic for radiating warmth. That suggests that it is the ideal medium for the glowing below-surface coil heating unit– both hydronic systems that flow warm water and electric floor covering systems. Such systems can be mounted below slate tiles. Thus, the heated floors will quickly increase the heat in your house. This feature makes slate an excellent choice for restrooms, gave it is well maintained to keep it water-proof.

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Disadvantages of Slate Tile

Slate tile’s benefits generally surpass its disadvantages, yet there are some things to consider before picking slate floor covering.

High cost: 

The introductory price to buy all-natural slate tiles can be relatively high, particularly when purchasing top-quality materials that are most likely to last for years. In addition to the high expense of the slate itself, which usually averages from $4 to $10 per square foot, the expert setup cost can add an extra $10 to $15 per square foot. 

The high price is a prime reason slate is usually booked for the home’s most noticeable areas.

Challenging installment: 

Although the installation of slate floor tile resembles that of ceramic tile, accurate installment is critical with slate because of its fragile nature. Slate tile, like natural rock, is tough to reduce without unique devices. Additionally, the subfloor and underlayment prep work must be done very thoroughly to avoid flexing, which can trigger the breaking of the grout joints or the floor tiles themselves. 

Consequently, it is typically best to have pros install slate floor tiles. Slate is a highly hefty product, as well as there are sometimes structural issues when installing it in upstairs rooms. In some instances, you may also need to strengthen the flooring structure to support the flooring.

Ongoing Maintenance: 

There is a specific amount of maintenance required to keep a slate tile floor looking appealing. During setup, the floor tiles should be secured both with a passing through sealer to shut tiny pores in the rock, then a barrier sealant to create a safe surface area. 

Depending on the place and how the flooring is used, these sealers might need to be reapplied regularly, every year or two.

The grout lines on slate tile are likewise at risk. Any activity on the floor can create the cement lines to split, and also, they can be at risk to spots, mold, and mold, specifically in wet places. 

Regular securing can aid to some extent. It is likewise possible to totally replace the grout and remove between floor tiles regularly over the flooring’s life.

Cleft Surfaces can be Uncomfortable: 

Slate tiles come in several different textures. While the refined slate tiles are perfectly smooth, some types of slate are finished with a rough, irregular, cleft structure. This type is most often used in damp environments where additional traction can help prevent slipping. 

In other places, though, slit slate can be uncomfortable underfoot. When choosing slate floor covering for a particular space, consider this.

Cold, Rigid Surface: 

Although it is an excellent flooring if you set up radiant heat, slate can be very freezing underfoot without such a heating system. The coolness might be preferable if you stay in a cozy environment yet is a lot less so in fabulous settings. This can be a particular problem in bedrooms, bathrooms, and various other areas where you typically stroll barefoot. This can be offset somewhat by the use of a rug.

Slate, like natural rock, is a rigid material. Also, it is ideal avoided in areas where young children or older grownups risk dropping. Porcelain, ceramic, or glass dishes might survive being gone down on vinyl or laminate floor covering. But they will probably be damaged if you fell them on the slate.

Lack of Consistency: 

The very same individuality that is one of the slate’s merits can likewise be a drawback. It can sometimes be hard to obtain the specific design look you desire due to variability in the products. Future repairs can be complicated if you don’t have a supply of added floor tiles accessible. It is always best to buy lots of added tiles on hand when installing slate flooring.

Final Thoughts

Slate flooring is an incredibly resilient, lovely, high-end flooring product that usually increases the value of your home, particularly in wet areas, entrances, and kitchens. But before choosing slate, you should likewise consider its high cost as well as maintenance needs.

What is Slate Tile?

If you are looking for a more technical explanation about slate, keep reading. 

Slate is an all-natural stone flooring product quarried from out of the earth, usually from mountains. Slate is a metamorphic rock, which (if you’ll remember your primary school geology) just suggests that it is developed over long periods out of other existing rock types. 

These sediments, as well as minerals, include quartz, mica, muscovite, calcite, and also most of the times biotite, chlorite, pyrite, and hematite, with rare circumstances of apatite, graphite, kaolinite (the main mineral in ceramic clay), magnetite, zircon, and also feldspar.

These are all after that pressed over extended periods by heat and stress until they bond right into a homogenous, finely grained rock, which we understand as slate. 

Slate is a durable, finely foliated, and weak rock, which can be found in various shades, depending on the location and minerals of the slate in question. It is commonly black, dark environment-friendly, and grey; however, it can also consist of red, purple, gold, and blue.

Slate is quarried in large pieces, then cleaved, alongside the foliation, right into usually consistent tiles. This stone is quarried all over the world along with domestically, yet is mainly manufactured in Asia. 

Slates are utilized not just for flooring but also for wall surface tiling, backsplashes, tipping rocks, roof covering, and a selection of other uses. Slate is possibly the most typical all-natural rock generally use.

Type of Slate Tiles

While the color, quality, thickness, and cracks in the slate structure can be influenced by the area it was quarried from, the primary classifications for slate tiles are based upon manufacturing. When slate tiles are in their most natural state, they don’t have a uniform shape. 

Ungauged slate floor tile can be set up with either side of the tile dealing with up, and the thickness of the floor tile tends to vary between 1/8 of an inch and 1/2 an inch. This can make installments more difficult. Sometimes extra work is needed to level the slate tiles by adding some grout or glue on the tile’s back. 

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