Grey Slate has been a popular building material in the UK for hundreds of years now thanks to its waterproof and heavy duty properties. However, you might not know that slate has some drawbacks. In this article we'll look at why grey slate flooring might not be right for you and look at some beautiful alternatives.
Slate flooring has a rough surface:
The hardness of slate makes it very difficult to work with, meaning that genuine tiles often have very uneven surfaces and varying levels of thickness. Small, sharp edges can stick up across your floor, which causes havoc when you try to slide a chair or move a sofa. These sharp edges are also pretty uncomfortable to walk on, and you definitely don't want to stub your toe on them! Instead, we'd recommend this floor from Polyflor, it's a Luxury Vinyl Tile floor which faithfully recreates the beautiful textures of grey slate, but has a surface which is smooth, flat and comfortable to walk on. The grouting effect seen here is simply a design strip which is laid between the tiles.
Slate tiles are cold to walk on:
Just like any stone or ceramic flooring, slate tiles are very cold to walk on. In winter, particularly, it can be quite unpleasant walking onto a freezing flooring first thing in the morning. If you're after the grey slate tile look, but still like warm toes during breakfast, we'd recommend a grey tile effect laminate. Laminate tile floors, are made from High Density Fibreboard covered with a hyper-realistic image of grey stone. Because the tiles are wood-based, this flooring is very warm to the touch and smooth underfoot. But don't worry, they are also incredibly tough and resistant to water and scratches.
Quickstep Exquisa Slate Dark flooring
Slate tiles are noisy:
You can always tell if it's an authentic stone floor you're walking on by how loud your footsteps sound. Stone floors make walking very noisy, and reflect the tapping noise up into the room, whilst sending a thudding sound into the room below. If you're after a bit of peace and quiet, we'd recommend this grey slate floor tile, which is part of the Quickstep Livin range. Being an LVT floor, Quickstep Livyn is much quieter to walk on, and absorbs a lot of the sound from walking. What's more, this flooring is installed over an acoustic underlay, which can be chosen for its acoustic insulation properties, absorbing even more sound.
Slate flooring is difficult to install:
Installing slate tiles is a difficult and lengthy process which should be undertaken by a specialist. The process can be lengthy and sometimes almost as expensive as the floor itself. If you're after a grey floor you can install as a DIY job, then look no further than a laminate floor. These grey tiles simply lock together using Kronospan's patented 5G locking mechanism, which is quick, painless and secure. What's more, each board is designed to look like three slate tiles, which makes installing the floor three times quicker than it already was!
Slate floors are hard to keep clean
Whilst a grey tile floor is a fantastic addition to your interior design, genuine slate floors can get dirty and dull very quickly. Their deep, rough texture traps the dirt, and the uneven surface makes them hard to clean. What's more, slate floors need to be retreated on a regular basis to stop them attracting grime. If you're not the type to mop your floor every day (and who is?!) it's worth considering Karndean vinyl. LVT flooring like this one is fully waterproof, which makes it very easy to clean: simply slosh a mop around dry it off. The grouting effect seen in the picture is created with Karndean design strips, which are simply laid between the tiles and are just as resistant to dirt - no more grubby grouting! This grey slate floor also features a lifetime warranty, so you know it's tough enough for anything life throws at it.