The Importance of Slip Resistance in Porcelain Tiles

Design versatility and low maintenance are making make porcelain tiles an increasingly popular hardscaping material these days.

However, some homeowners are still reluctant to choose these tiles due to a perception that they are slippery. But this is an antiquated notion; the latest innovations in porcelain tile manufacture make them one of the safest outdoor flooring options available. Whether you have young children running around or planning to install near a pool or other water feature, porcelain tiles will impress you with their slip resistance. 

What Makes Porcelain Tiles Slip-Resistant?

Conventional tiles with smooth finishes are indeed prone to slipperiness. Upscale and aesthetically pleasing outdoor porcelain tiles offer a variety of slip-resistant properties that will have you upgrading your outdoor living space without fear of slips or falls. 

Porcelain is far less porous than natural stone, meaning it absorbs less moisture than other hardscaping surface materials. The anti-slip and moisture resistant properties of porcelain tiles ensure a maximum level of safety in the areas prone to wet conditions. Their low moisture absorption ensures no mildew, mould or lichen, common culprits in slippery outdoor surfaces. 

The surface texture of porcelain tiles is designed to be slip-resistant, even when wet. The beauty and nearly unlimited design options that we enjoy about porcelain tile usually come from a colour, pattern or design that has been printed on the tile. Even porcelain tiles that mimic wood or natural stone look have been printed. This printing adds moderate texture to the tile surface and increases its slip resistance. The surface texture largely determines the slipperiness of porcelain. Some porcelain tiles also have an anti-slip coating for additional peace of mind. 

How to Find Anti-Slip Porcelain Tiles for Outdoor Flooring?

While no tile or other outdoor flooring can be entirely “slip-proof,” there are industry standards and tests that determine the slip resistance of tiles. 

The DCOF (Dynamic Coefficient of Friction value) is the industry standard, setting the minimum standard for interior floor tile at ≥ .42 DCOF. 

For exterior applications, whether walkways or around the pool, the minimum standard is set at ≥ .60 DCOF.

Reviewing the DCOF rating of porcelain tiles is advised to ensure you’re choosing a product that is safe for outdoor use. 

Known for their exceptional slip resistance, outdoor porcelain tiles from Kronos Ceramiche have been rated at ≥ .60 DCOF, proving exceptionally safe for outdoor living spaces. Del Conca porcelain pavers are also rated at ≥ .60 DCOF

Landmark Ceramics, the maker of Frontier20 porcelain pavers, has created the Anti-slip Surface Project, an initiative that provides four different levels of safety for commercial and residential applications for both indoor and outdoor installations. Landmark’s porcelain pavers are offered with DCOF ratings that include ≥ 0.42 (Standard Finish) for indoor, ≥ 0.55 (Safe Step Finish) for residential & commercial, ≥0.65 (Safe Step Plus Finish) for residential & commercial, and ≥ 0.70 (Grip Finish) for outdoor residential and commercial spaces, as well as for indoor installation wherever the highest anti-slip performances are required.

Other Benefits of Porcelain Tiles

In addition to their exceptional slip-resistance, porcelain tiles offer a variety of benefits you’re sure to appreciate when designing a deck, patio or other hardscapes. 

  • Porcelain tiles offer impressive strength and durability, withstanding the ravages of Canadian winters, and engineered to last decades. 
  • Porcelain tiles are a long-term investment that requires no eventual replacement. Often porcelain tiles are produced with recycled materials too. They require no adhesives and their dry installation also significantly reduces the creation of dust and pollutants in the environment.
  • You can’t beat porcelain tiles for their low maintenance. Instead of sanding, staining and sealing your deck every couple of years, simply give it a good powerwash in the spring to return your porcelain deck to its freshly-installed good looks. 

If you need help choosing the right porcelain tile for your deck, patio or other hardscapes, Stone Deck Innovations has the products and know-how to help you get the most out of your outdoor living space. Contact us now!