Save up to 75% off!

Summer Savings Event!

Read More

Dos and Don’ts of Slate Tile Floors [Maintenance Tips]

June 22, 2020

What is a slate tile floor?

Slate tile is a beautiful type of tile flooring made from thin slices of slate rock that are installed over top of a bed of mortar. This type of flooring is highly durable and prized for its appealing appearance and longevity.

Many people have this type of floor installed in their home and can count on it holding up for many decades of regular use.

This type of flooring is crafted from the metamorphic rock and can be found at many specialty home improvement stores. It’s a significant investment but many of the latest tile varieties are designed to last as long as you could need them to.

Slate tile floor benefits


Slate tile flooring is highly durable and relied upon in parts of homes or businesses that are going to get heavy traffic. As long as it is properly maintained you can depend on slate tiles to last for decades without needing replacement.

Of course, there will be some cracked pieces and chipping over time, which is why it’s important to store extra tiles for making replacements that look the same in the future.

Color and Style Options

Slate tile is a beautiful natural stone product that varies dramatically in color and style. For that reason, it’s a beautiful addition to any kitchen or bathroom and can really dress the spaces in your home up.

With so many different color variations it’s important to choose slate tiles that look the way you want them to because you might not like every batch of tiles.

Increased Home Value

As far as tile flooring options go, slate tile is a solid investment that can actually increase the value of your home. This tile works very well for radiant heat solutions as well because it naturally transmits heat up through its surfaces.

If you want to rely on in-floor radiant heating to warm your home, slate tiles work very well for that purpose.

DOs of Slate Tile Maintenance:

Since slate tile is a somewhat delicate material it’s important that you understand how to care for it properly. Follow these common practices that will help preserve your tile flooring and make sure that it looks nice for years to come.

Each of the items on this list are good for the latest tile varieties made from slate, and they’re easy practices to get into the habit of.

1. Use rugs or mats

It’s important to protect your tile flooring options with quality rugs or mats in any areas that are going to hold up furniture, that are going to see heavy foot traffic or that you just want to be more comfortable.

Slate tiles are very hard and they aren’t designed for comfort. By taking care to lay out carpet in specific areas around your home you’ll create comfortable locations to lounge on and you’ll protect the flooring as well.

You can find a variety of area rug options that will complement the latest tile varieties nicely. Just look through the different options available and make sure that you pick something that looks nice and offers solid performance as well.

2. Apply sealer once a year

Slate is a porous material and if it isn’t sealed properly it will soak up liquids and stains. That’s why it’s so important to apply sealers down to your floor regularly.

If you haven’t taken the time to get to know the latest tile varieties, you might be surprised to learn this negative issue that goes along with slate tile.

Applying the sealer is a serious maintenance task that takes some time and means that you will have to stay off the floors for a short period, but when done properly a good sealer will extend the life of your slate tiles and keep them looking like new for decades.

There are many tile flooring options that don’t require a regular sealer, so this is definitely something to think about before you commit to tile floors.

3. Clean spills immediately

Even when properly sealed, spills will seep down into slate tiles over time. It’s best to wipe away any spills as soon as possible. Spills can also damage the seal protecting your slate tiles, making them less durable over time and leaving you with more maintenance work to do.

When you’re trying to maintain your slate tile flooring options over time, make sure that you have a mop and rags handy so you can clean spills as they happen.

4. Mop with a pH neutral cleaning product

Another thing to consider is the type of cleaning product that you use to clean your floors off with. It’s important that the product has a neutral pH so that it does not damage the tiles themselves, or the protective layer of sealant over top of them.

Carefully choose cleaning solutions meant for natural tile surfaces or make your own cleaning solution using different ingredients that will not harm your floors. This is a simple step to take, but something that many new slate tile flooring owners don’t think about.

5. Carry furniture when moving across the room

While slate tile flooring is highly durable and designed to hold up to heavy use, it can be damaged if you don’t take the proper precautions. Be careful to carry furniture across floors with slate tiles to avoid chipping or scratching them.

These tiles are sensitive to heavy objects and a heavy piece of furniture is enough to crack the tiles and do serious damage to them.

By being careful to carry your furniture you will protect the tiles on your floors and help them last for years. Adding protective leg covers onto the bottom of your furniture is another good investment.

Don’ts of Slate Tile Maintenance:

If you own one of the latest tile varieties and have slate on your floors there are plenty of different things that you should avoid doing to your floors.

Be careful to avoid making these common mistakes and you’ll keep your floors looking nice for longer and avoid doing unnecessary damage to the floors throughout your home.

1. Do not use abrasive cleaners

Abrasive cleaning tools are more harmful than helpful when used on slate tile flooring. Rough sponges, steel wool and any other abrasive cleaning tools can scratch up floors and damage their perfect finishes.

Use smooth cleaning tools to wipe down surfaces instead and be careful to avoid using anything that can scratch the surface of your flooring. As long as you keep this in mind while you have slate tiles you should be able to get more life out of them.

2. Do not scoot furniture across the floor without a protector

Be careful to avoid moving furniture across slate tiles without some form of protective cap on the legs. Standard furniture legs often scratch up floors and they can do damage to slate floors in some instances.

If you must move furniture without any non-slip pads installed, make sure you get someone to help you lift and carry the items.

On top of special protective feet that you can get for your furniture, you can also get protective coverings to lay down on your floor itself.

Much like a carpet, these mats and special coverings will keep hard objects from scraping your floors and will leave you feeling at ease if a piece of furniture happens to slide around on your slate tiles a bit.

Choose a mat that is thick enough to provide complete protection, and wide enough to pad each of the legs of your furniture.

3. Do not use a vacuum cleaner that has a beater bar

It’s okay to vacuum your tile floors and doing so will help remove any dirt, dust and other items that could potentially scratch the floor surface over time.

Tile flooring is delicate, but it’s easy to clean with a vacuum as long as you do it right. Make sure that you don’t have the beater bar of your vacuum turned on when you clean the flooring in your home.

As long as the bar is turned off you won’t scratch up or wear down the surface of your flooring by vacuuming it. It’s possible to do real damage to your floor with the beater bar though because there can be rocks, metal and other hard objects lodged in the bar as it moves around cleaning your floors.

Contact Express Flooring to get started today!

Slat is one of the best tile flooring options that you can get today, but it’s expensive and quite heavy. It’s important to understand how to take care of this flooring if you’re going to invest in it. By adding this flooring to your home, you’ll enjoy an upscale look and decades of reliable performance.

If you’re interested in slate tile flooring, come in and see us to see the options that we have available. We offer a wide assortment of slate tiles and can help you find just the right finish for use in your kitchen, your bathroom or any other area in your home that you want to dress up with these rugged tiles.