What are floor tile ratings and why are they important?

Tile is a great floor option for bathrooms, kitchens and high-traffic areas. It is perfect for high moisture areas or areas that attract dirt because it is easy to clean and care for. Tile comes in various sizes, colors and textures.


Tile is rated by a series of tests that evaluate its hardness and its ability to handle wear and the percentage of water it can absorb. Some tiles are harder than others (MOH Scale), so The Porcelain Enamel Institute released a series of hardness ratings. Here are the ratings listed below:

Class I - No foot traffic. These tiles are for wall-only applications.

Class II - Light traffic. Interior residential and commercial wall applications. These are for areas where little abrasion occurs, such as bathrooms.

Class III - Light to moderate traffic. Use these in residential settings with normal foot traffic. They are also ideal for countertops and walls.

Class IV - Moderate to heavy traffic. These tiles are acceptable for all home use in addition to medium commercial or light institutional use.

Class V - Heavy to extra heavy traffic. Approved tile for all residential applications, heavy commercial work and institutional foot traffic.

Depending on where you plan to use tile, these ratings can help you determine the right type of tile you need.

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