Patio Materials: Stone vs. Stone Tile
Stone tile as a patio material tends to be very popular. The color range of this product is huge and there is something to suit every house. It is quite easy to lay and set in place and looks very good when done correctly. It is considerably less back breaking than laying a flagstone patio. Stone tiles are a tile but with a stone look to them as they are made from slate, granite, marble or sandstone and fashioned into an evenly regulated tile shape.
When you look at the stone available, sometimes called flagstone, there are some beautiful varieties. It is extremely heavy and nearly 2 inches thick. It’s not difficult to use but you need a very strong back as well as gloves to protect your hands. The main difference between the two, besides the weight, is the fact that the stone is not evenly shaped, so you will be required to think of it as a jigsaw puzzle. You need to fit the pieces of the puzzle together to give you the best overall effect.
Many times the various pieces of stone will need cutting to fit into the required space. When cutting, you will need to use goggles to avoid the bits of flying stone. You will be using an angle grinder to cut it and if it’s your first experience of using this type of grinder, be sure to use caution.
The available coloring in the stone covers a wide range and you can achieve a very natural looking effect as no two pieces will be identical.
Placing them is a time consuming job and it is something that will take several days to do. When you have sorted the shapes out to the best fit you can, then set them in concrete, making sure that you have the spacing between them evenly matched.
Stone tiles, which are very popular, are far easier to lay than stones. They have been cut and dressed to an even shape and size and only require laying with even spacing between them. Because there are so many kinds of stone that have been cut and made available, the variety of colors available is endless.
One thing you have to make sure of when using them outside is that they are dressed for outdoor use. Should you use an internal tile in an outside location it could become very slippery in wet weather. Instruction on proper use of tiles will be available from the supplier who will have a list of appropriate uses of the product.
Stone tiles can also be glazed or unglazed. Some unglazed ones might require sealing. You need to make sure you use the correct sealant on these stone tiles as they must be able to breathe. A synthetic product sealant is not beneficial to the stone. A natural sealant will make the stone last longer and glow more effectively. The drawback with natural sealants is that they require regular repeat applications because they do not last as long as the synthetic sealants.
Stone tiles can be a thing of beauty in your garden and on your patio but they need to be well treated to retain lasting beauty.