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View Poll Results: Best option for checkered tiling?
VCT + Epoxy over it 15 34.88%
Ceramic tiles 3 6.98%
Porcelain tiles 25 58.14%
Voters: 43. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:14 AM   #1
iatros
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Default VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

Hello everyone,

So I thought I had it all figured out. I bought my VCT for my checkered floor, and was going to put a coat of epoxy on it to seal it and eliminate the maintenance and slickness of the VCT.

Now I was reading about people putting in porcelain and ceramic tiles in their garage!

I'm even more confused. Could someone more knowledegable than I just briefly go over pros and cons of each? Specifically VCT+Epoxy vs Porc vs Ceramic tiles?


Thanks for your patience and help

Last edited by iatros; 03-29-2011 at 10:21 AM.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:56 PM   #2
PecosBill
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

Well, I'll throw my two cents in. Just remember, as a professional ceramic tile and commercial flooring contractor, my thinking might be a little different than the average DIYer.

Standard ceramic tile: Forget it, not nearly durable enough for garage duty. Glazes chip, non glazed absorb. Ceramics easily break.

Porcelain tile: Even though it is a type of ceramic, being very dense, it is durable when bedded correctly. Through body porcelains don't show chips as bad as glazed. When rectified, can be very flat, especially when combined with a 1/8" grout joint.

VCT: Cheap. Easy Maintenance. Very easy repair. Cheap.

My last 30 years have been spent in this business, with the majority of it specializing in ceramic tile. So, what would my preference be? For a show garage, a porcelain garage would be beautiful. For a working garage, VCT would be more practical.

Right now I am working on drawing up what will be my dream shop. It will be on a piece of property my wife and I have, not far from here. Even though I'm a flooring contractor, most of it will probably be densified concrete. Since a portion of this shop will be dedicated to bikes, and nothing is quite as fun as hitting a slick surface with wet tires, I am actually thinking of doing one bay in Walk Off Mat. I've never seen it done in a garage, and I think it might work.

We are in the middle of remodeling the house we live in now, and I well probably end up pouring a colored self-leveling topping in this garage, and then an epoxy coating.

Any garage I owned personally, would have to be pretty large, and pretty much set up as display only, before I'd install porcelain tile. But saying that, I have installed some pretty beautiful tile garage floors.
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Old 03-29-2011, 12:05 AM   #3
koister2001
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

PecosBill, thanks for sharing your experience on this forum. Do you mind sharing some pictures of your garage tile jobs? I am planning to put porcelain tiles on my 3 1/2 car garage soon. Thanks,
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Old 03-29-2011, 12:40 AM   #4
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

I was thinking of doing porcelain tile in my garage. But VCT fit my budget, and was faster to install. I found all of my VCT on craigslist and have less than 300 bucks in the whole 864 sq.ft. In a few years when it gets ratty, I might sand it and topcoat it with Wolverine epoxy.
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Old 03-29-2011, 08:32 AM   #5
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

Quote:
Originally Posted by koister2001 View Post
PecosBill, thanks for sharing your experience on this forum. Do you mind sharing some pictures of your garage tile jobs? I am planning to put porcelain tiles on my 3 1/2 car garage soon. Thanks,
I don't really have any garage pics to post, but most of them were down your way, back in the day. It was more common when I was down your way, (originally from Santa Cruz), than it is up here in Oregon.
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:29 AM   #6
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PecosBill View Post
Well, I'll throw my two cents in. Just remember, as a professional ceramic tile and commercial flooring contractor, my thinking might be a little different than the average DIYer.
I was hoping you would be one of the people to respond


Quote:
Standard ceramic tile: Forget it, not nearly durable enough for garage duty. Glazes chip, non glazed absorb. Ceramics easily break.
Excellent info. Definitely staying far away from ceramics based on that!


Quote:

Porcelain tile: Even though it is a type of ceramic, being very dense, it is durable when bedded correctly. Through body porcelains don't show chips as bad as glazed. When rectified, can be very flat, especially when combined with a 1/8" grout joint.
In my reading I know now to get at LEAST class 4, if not 5 for this application and also to be cognizant of the coefficient of friction to help minimize slipping. These tiles aren't that expensive, and you can do more intricate designs with the checkerboard I was looking at.

Quote:

VCT: Cheap. Easy Maintenance. Very easy repair. Cheap.
Agreed! That's why I was going this way. And with the epoxy on top, it was going to eliminate the maintenance and slippery-ness issues!!

Buuuuuut... then I started reading about porcelains and for some reason in my initial research, I had written them off completely due to cost. But if I compare VCT+Epoxy cost vs Doitmyself Porcelain install...

The price is the same, if not cheaper for the porcelain!


I guess that's where I need help. This 2-car garage will be 80% for storing, 15% for repair work, and 5% for entertainment

The place was built in 2005 in Tampa Bay and the floor has a couple of hairline cracks that I've already patched up. The prev owner had put some form of silicone caulk in what looks like expansion joints (I think??), and there doesn't seem to be any major damage or oil spills on the floor.


Before I started my VCT/Epoxy process, I just wanted to avoid any buyers remorse


Quote:

My last 30 years have been spent in this business, with the majority of it specializing in ceramic tile. So, what would my preference be? For a show garage, a porcelain garage would be beautiful. For a working garage, VCT would be more practical.

Right now I am working on drawing up what will be my dream shop. It will be on a piece of property my wife and I have, not far from here. Even though I'm a flooring contractor, most of it will probably be densified concrete. Since a portion of this shop will be dedicated to bikes, and nothing is quite as fun as hitting a slick surface with wet tires, I am actually thinking of doing one bay in Walk Off Mat. I've never seen it done in a garage, and I think it might work.

We are in the middle of remodeling the house we live in now, and I well probably end up pouring a colored self-leveling topping in this garage, and then an epoxy coating.

Any garage I owned personally, would have to be pretty large, and pretty much set up as display only, before I'd install porcelain tile. But saying that, I have installed some pretty beautiful tile garage floors.
Your ideas sound beautiful. Can't wait to see pics!!! Good luck, and again, thank you for your input.
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Old 03-29-2011, 11:01 AM   #7
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

After a lot of research before starting my garage, I ended up with porcelain. One major reason is that the tile can be bought cheap. Second reason that while laying tile, I could fix my pitch issues. Third, porcelain tile is extremely durable. Some might have seen my post in the flooring section. It will, and has taken some serious abuse without showing any damage. I also like the fact that i don't have to do anything to protect it, like putting wood under my jack, or jack stands. Roll jack in place, lift car, do what you got to do. I don't want to think "PROTECT THE FLOOR" every time I need to place something on it. Just my $.02.
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Old 03-29-2011, 12:24 PM   #8
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

I am also trying to figure out what to do with my floor. I have personally seen and walked in garages with epoxy, racedeck and just last week I got to see a porcelain tile garage floor, and it just blew me away! Don't get me wrong, they are all nice to have, and any of them would be a million times better than the peeling paint floor I have now, but something about the porcelain tile made me feel more like I was in a living space than a garage. They all have pros and cons, you have to figure out what works best for you.
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Old 03-30-2011, 11:09 PM   #9
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

Well... I want to go with porcelain... now I have the fun task of returning the VCT tile to Home Depot... unfortunately the black vct was "special order"

Anyone have any experience returning these before?
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Old 03-31-2011, 12:04 PM   #10
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

I think they will still take it back. It only special order because they don't stock it. Just guessing though, never had the experience myself.
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:13 PM   #11
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

They took it back. Didn't charge the 15%

Next up, porcelain tiles here I come!
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Old 05-17-2011, 10:16 PM   #12
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

I would not in a hundred years try to contradict PecosBill. He is a pro and I am something less than an amateur when it comes to tile.

If I had to do it over again, I would do porcelain tile. On sale at Lowes, it's something like a buck a square foot.

But I went to Home Depot, and put in inexpensive ceramic tile. It has a 4 rating for hardness and a .6 rating for coefficient of fiction. After several years of hard use, it's held up very well. Considering the .59/sf cost, I'm happy. But again: however good ceramic has been, porcelain tile would have held up even better.


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Old 05-18-2011, 09:41 AM   #13
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Default Re: VCT + Epoxy vs Porcelain tile?

I dropped my giant-ass, old school 18V dewalt, from 7'-ish feet yesterday. 1/2" drill bit in the chuck. I see it fall, look down, and it landed with the bit into the floor. I saw sparks when it hit the tile. I though for sure my tile if effed. Nope. Can't find where it landed. I though I found the spot but it rubbed off. Bit looks fine too, drill still works. Yea good day.
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