Tile vs. Wood Flooring: Which Is the Better Choice?

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Wood flooring and tile flooring are both popular options when it comes to home renovations. But for those in Ohio, especially in the cities of Cincinnati and Columbus, deciding between porcelain tiles vs wood flooring is a major decision that needs to be made.

At Stone Center, we understand how important this choice is and want to help you make the best decision possible so that's what we will be discussing.

Feature Hardwood Wood-Look Tile
Maintenance Modest to intensive upkeep. Refinishing is necessary occasionally, and specialized cleaning items may be called for. With minimal effort, tile is easy to keep clean and will remain unfazed by scratches and stains.
Approved locations Hardwood is perfect for dry, indoor areas; however, due to its sensitivity to moisture, it is not recommended for bathrooms or basements. Suitable for any indoor or outdoor spaces, even those high-humidity spots like bathrooms and basements.
Average cost Higher cost per square foot. Can range from $5 to $20 per square foot depending on the type of wood with installation price accounted for. Lower cost per square foot. Can range from $2 to $8 per square foot depending on the quality and design including installation price.
Installation Requires professional installation for best results. DIY installation is possible but can be challenging. DIY installation is possible and recommended for those with basic home improvement skills. Professional installation may be required for complex installations or large areas.
Moisture resistance Sensitive to moisture and can warp or buckle when exposed to water. Highly resistant to moisture and can withstand exposure to water without damage.
Pet-friendly Susceptible to scratches and damage from pet claws. Resistant to scratches and damage from pet claws.
Eco-friendliness Can be eco-friendly if harvested from sustainable sources. More eco-friendly than hardwood due to the frequent use of recyclable materials and reduced deforestation.
Sound absorption Good sound absorption properties. Poor sound absorption properties.

Types of Tile Flooring

Tile flooring comes in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. Popular types are glazed ceramic tile, porcelain tile, quarry tile, and Indiana limestone pavers.

Ceramic and porcelain tiles are both extremely durable and able to withstand heavy foot traffic. When it comes to porcelain floor tile vs wood flooring, each has its own pros and cons.

Some common types of tile include:

  • Glazed ceramic tiles
  • Porcelain tiles
  • Quarry tiles
  • Indiana limestone pavers
  • Mosaic tiles
  • Natural stone tiles
  • Marble tiles

When making the comparison between tile vs wood floors, it's important to take into account their different characteristics and which will best suit your lifestyle and budget.

Tile Type Description
Granite A coarse-grained, igneous rock made of quartz, feldspar, and mica that is often used for countertops and other applications.
Porcelain A type of ceramic tile made from clay or a mixture of clay and other materials with a waterproof glaze. It has diverse uses for both residential and commercial spaces.
Ceramic A durable material crafted from fired or baked clay, it is often found as wall tiles, flooring, and countertops in kitchens and bathrooms.
Slate An extremely dense metamorphic rock that forms when layers of mud are exposed to extreme heat or pressure. It can be found in floor tiles, roofing tiles, and other applications.
Fired Stone Refers to an artificial stone created by fusing clay pellets together under high temperatures to produce a single block of stone with a variety of decorative finishes.
Resin A synthetic material composed primarily of epoxy resins combined with hardening agents such as glass fibers that can be used to create countertops in homes or businesses.
Travertine/Limestone Natural stones formed over millions of years beneath the surfaces of rivers, lakes, hot springs, limestone caves, and wetlands.
Marble A metamorphic rock consisting mainly of calcite or dolomite crystals formed by intense heat and pressure within the Earth’s crust.

Types of Hardwood Flooring

It's amazing how many different types of hardwood flooring are available for homeowners. Each type of flooring has its own unique beauty and characteristics, allowing you to create a space that is warm, inviting, and tailored to your preferences.

From classic solid hardwood to bamboo flooring and cork flooring to reclaimed wood - there is a type of hardwood out there that fits any budget, style, or lifestyle. No matter if you're looking for something traditional or modern, you can find the perfect hardwood option to complete your home.

Here are some of the most popular types of hardwood flooring:

  • Solid Hardwood
  • Engineered Hardwood
  • Laminate
  • Bamboo Flooring
  • Cork Flooring
  • Reclaimed Wood

This variety makes the conversation of engineered wood floor vs porcelain tile extra interesting.

Tile vs. Wood Flooring Style

When deciding between wood floors vs porcelain tile, it is essential to consider what look you would like to achieve. Wood flooring brings a classic and timeless feel to any room, encouraging an inviting and warm atmosphere.

If you prefer a traditional decor style, then opting for wooden flooring is an excellent option. However, more modern accents can be combined with wood floors to create an eclectic look. Porcelain tiles provide a clean and contemporary style but may lack the cozy feeling that wood offers.

On the other hand, porcelain tile comes in a variety of designs, from classic to contemporary. This can help create a modern and stylish atmosphere, and unique colors and patterns can give any room an interesting twist. When selecting between wood floors or porcelain tile, it is important to think about how it will blend with the rest of your home.

Hardwood Floor vs Wood Tile Cost

A comparison of tile vs wood flooring cost is an important factor when it comes to home renovation. Engineered wood flooring offers advantages such as ease of installation and affordability, while porcelain tile offers greater durability and style options.

To help make your decision easier, let's review the average cost per square foot for tile vs. wood floors, installation expenses for each, and the impact on home value.

What Is the Average Cost per Square Foot for Tile vs. Wood Floors?

Starting with engineered wood flooring vs tile cost, the average cost per square foot for porcelain tile is around $2-$8, while engineered wood flooring costs approximately $3-$14. It will depend on the size of your space and the type of tiles or wood you choose.

What Is the Installation Tile Floor vs Wood Floor Cost?

Moving on to wood floor vs tile floor cost, installing tiles can be more labor-intensive than installing engineered wood flooring due to extra prep work such as leveling and measuring that must be done prior to laying down tiles, thereby increasing the price. On average, it costs around $3-$10 per square foot for tile installation.

Tile vs. Wood: Which Adds More Value to a Home?

Both porcelain tile and engineered wood flooring can add value to a home depending on the region in which it is located, design trends in that area, quality of material used, etc. However, buyers generally prefer homes with hardwood floors so having them installed may result in a higher return on investment if you decide to sell in the future.

Wood vs Tile Floor Durability

wood vs tile floor

When it comes to flooring, people often debate between wood floor vs wood look tile or porcelain wood tile vs wood flooring. Durability is one of the most important factors to consider when making this decision. In this section, we'll answer three questions related to the durability of wood floors vs tile floors.

How Does Water Affect Tile Vs Wood Floor?

Porcelain tile is renowned for its water-resistant properties, making it an ideal choice for humid areas like bathrooms and kitchens. Wood floors however are more vulnerable to moisture damage and therefore require specialized attention to prevent warping or cracking. If your home has high rates of humidity, prompt spill clean up or careful use of cleaning products is essential if you opt for wooden flooring.

How Does Water Affect Wood Flooring vs Tile?

As mentioned earlier, unlike wood floors, tile flooring is highly resilient to moisture and will remain undamaged by common spills. This makes it a great option for bathrooms and kitchens, where water can cause warping or swelling in wood floors, leading to cracks or gaps between the boards. Wood tile flooring vs hardwood should be considered carefully if moisture is likely to be an issue in the area.

What Is Tile Floor vs Wood Floor Longevity over Time?

Tile floors have a significant advantage over wood floors when it comes to longevity; when installed and taken care of properly, they can last up to 50 years or more. Hardwood floors also have impressive durability but require more upkeep, such as sanding and refinishing, in order to stay looking their best.

In summary, while wood tile vs hardwood floor may look similar, they have different durability characteristics. Tile floors, particularly porcelain wood tile, are highly resistant to water damage and have a longer lifespan.

Tiles vs Wood Flooring Repair & Maintenance

When it comes to wood floor vs porcelain tile, repair and maintenance are important considerations. While both may require regular upkeep, there are a few differences between the two that should be kept in mind.

Wood Flooring Repair and Maintenance

  • Regular cleaning and polishing are needed to maintain its luster.
  • Scratches, dents, and wear and tear can be costly to repair
  • Water and moisture damage can lead to warping or rotting
  • Refinishing may be required every 5-10 years, which can come with a hefty price tag.

Porcelain Tile Repair and Maintenance

  • Regular cleaning and resealing are necessary to prevent staining and discoloration.
  • Compared to wood flooring, it is more durable and resistant to scratches, dents, and wear and tear.
  • It is highly resistant to water damage and moisture, making it ideal for areas prone to spills and humidity.
  • If a tile becomes damaged, it can be replaced without affecting the rest of the floor.

Wood flooring vs porcelain tile flooring both have their own repair and maintenance requirements; however, tile generally offers greater durability and easier maintenance.

Floor Tiles vs. Wooden Floor Sound Absorption

When comparing porcelain tiles vs wood flooring, another factor to consider is sound absorption. Here are some key differences between the two options:

Porcelain Tiles

  • Hard and dense, making them poor at absorbing sound.
  • Reflects sound waves, leading to a more reverberant and noisy environment.
  • Often requires underlayment to help absorb sound.

Wooden Floors

  • More porous and softer, making them better at absorbing sound.
  • Can help reduce noise levels and create a more peaceful and comfortable environment.
  • Depending on the thickness of the wood and the type of underlayment used, can offer varying degrees of sound absorption.

Wood Floor vs Tile: Which Is Best for Your Home?

Here are some more considerations to keep in mind on the topic of tile vs wood flooring in kitchens and other parts of the home.

Which Is Best for Homes with Pets?

  • For pet owners, tile flooring should be the go-to choice due to its greater durability against scratches and stains.
  • If wood is desired for aesthetic purposes, then certain types such as bamboo or Brazilian cherry can provide additional protection with their scratch-resistant qualities.

Which Is Best for Homes with Kids?

  • Tile flooring is an ideal choice for places that experience a lot of foot traffic, as well its slick surface makes it effortless to clean up any messes or spills.
  • While wood floors can give a comfortable and inviting atmosphere, they may not be suitable for areas with high foot traffic.

Which Is Best for Bathrooms and Kitchens?

  • For moisture-prone areas, tile flooring should be the clear preference due to its waterproof and stain-resistant qualities.
  • For bathrooms with high levels of humidity, porcelain tile is the best choice due to its enhanced water resistance.
  • Wood flooring may be a good option for kitchens, as long as it’s sealed properly and regularly maintained to prevent moisture damage.
Consideration Tile Flooring Wood Flooring
Homes with Pets Greater durability against scratches and stains Certain types such as bamboo or Brazilian cherry provide scratch-resistance
Homes with Kids Ideal for high foot traffic and easy to clean up messes Not suitable for areas with high foot traffic
Bathrooms and Kitchens Waterproof and stain-resistant, ideal for moisture-prone areas Good option for kitchens if sealed and regularly maintained, susceptible to moisture damage

What Is a Wood-Look Tile?

As an alternative to real wood, wood-look tile is a type of porcelain that replicates the aesthetic beauty of timber but also offers all the advantages and convenience associated with traditional tiles.

When deciding between a hardwood floor vs tile that looks like wood, it's important to consider your unique needs and preferences.

Hardwood floors vs wood look tile each have their pros and cons. Therefore, let's talk more about wood floor vs porcelain wood look tile.

Advantages of Wood-Look Tile

  • For areas prone to moisture, like bathrooms and kitchens, vinyl flooring is a great option that oozes with style.
  • Its waterproof surface makes it impervious to scratches, dents, or stains.
  • Its consistent pattern free from imperfections found in natural wood allows for an easy clean-up requiring minimum maintenance.
  • Furthermore, you can find vinyl flooring in nearly any size, color, or design - bound to fit your particular aesthetic preference.

The Drawbacks of Wood Tile Flooring

  • Not as comforting to the touch as genuine wood flooring.
  • Can be more slippery when moist than hardwood floors. 
  • Cleaning around grout lines can be a tedious task.
  • Installation may require extra tools and effort compared to traditional tile-laying methods   
  • Costlier than natural timber or other ceramic tiles.


In conclusion, the choice between tile and wood flooring ultimately comes down to personal preferences and the specific needs of your home. Both options have their unique advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to weigh the pros and cons carefully.

No matter what you choose, it is essential to work with a reputable and reliable flooring provider.

For those in the area, the best natural stone store in Columbus is Stone Center. Stone Center is also available in Cincinnati. Thanks for reading.


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Jon Smiley

Jon, the owner of Stone Center, is a knowledgeable expert in natural stone products, specializing in various types of stone for landscaping and architectural projects. Passionate about promoting the beauty and versatility of natural stone, Jon aims to use these blogs to inspire readers with creative ideas to upgrade their homes.

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