As you scan the various possibilities for your kitchen floor, and your eyes rest on natural stone with a dull surface with conflicting color shades, you are looking at travertine stone. Travertine flooring appeals to many modern homes because of its unique appearance that stands out from other natural stones.
Travertine is commonly found in Turkey, Italy, Mexico and Peru. This stone forms from geothermal springs. In its natural form, often algae, macrophytes, and other organisms can be found living on the service, which is what also causes the holes or “porosity” of the rock (don’t worry, if you are not a fan of the Appearance like a “hole”, installers often fill these with grout. You’ll find travertine in “filled” and “unfilled” forms).
Advantages of travertine floor
- Travertine is a sedimentary rock by nature and has been formed by years of deposition. Therefore travertine floor is extremely tough, and can last for generations even under rugged and damp conditions such as those in kitchens.
- Travertine flooring comes in various floor colors including beige, walnut, gold, cream and ivory, and it can give your kitchen a classy look. These natural colors are the result of the addition of various minerals during its formation. The red travertine is due to the iron content and can give an exclusive look to your kitchen floor.
- Because of the inconsistencies in color and texture, every travertine floor looks different. Travertine is nature’s work of art, and it will add value to your home.
Disadvantages of travertine floor
- The travertine floor, although comfortable during the summers, can become uncomfortably cold during the winters. Underfloor heating systems can keep the floor at a soothing temperature during the winter.
- The travertine floor, being hard, does not absorb the impact of walking during the long hours of cooking and tends to become uncomfortable. A few floor mats placed in certain areas such as around sinks and countertops can give a more comfortable work experience.
Cost of travertine floor
It will cost you anything from $2 to $3 or more to buy travertine floor tiles. Installation charges add to the total cost. Each tile contractor sets a different price depending on where the stone was imported from. Bigger and thicker tiles obviously cost more. The richer the color variations, the higher the cost. Remember that your cost also depends on the total floor area of your kitchen.
A good grade travertine floor is always worth the investmentsince apart from serving you for many years it will give your kitchen a richer feel.
Tips for buying travertine floor tiles
1. Since travertine can break during installation and later, it is recommended to buy a few extra boxes of tiles. Tiles that are purchased separately later may look out of place and will definitely be more expensive to purchase.
2. Travertine can be filled or unfilled. Some prefer it unfilled as it looks rustic and distinct. However, a filled travertine floor, even if on the expensive side, will require less maintenance than an unfilled one.
3. You will also have to decide if you want your travertine floor to be polished or polished; brushed or tumbled. Polished or polished travertine gives off a modern look, while brushed or chiselled gives a more rugged look. While polished travertine is easier to clean, keep in mind that polished floors can be very slippery.
4. Choose travertine floor tiles in keeping with the type of tiles used on your countertops and backsplashes. Your travertine floor tiles should also blend in with the rest of your kitchen decor. If you can’t find the same type of tiles, you can buy tiles with similar shades that complement each other and bring a uniform look.
5. If your kitchen is small, you can give it a spacious look by installing lighter and larger travertine floor tiles. This would also mean less grouting and more hygiene.
Installation of travertine floor
In addition to proper surface preparation, the travertine floor also requires careful sealing, so doing it all by yourself can lead to a lot of breakage and a shabby finish. For travertine to look its best, it needs to be installed by a professional installer.
Along with proper tile installation, an experienced and licensed contractor also takes care of the aesthetics. They know how to make the necessary marks and run the travertine floor tiles along walls and corners. They also know how to use tiles from different boxes, rather than just one box, to prevent the color peaking in a particular spot. After aligning and smoothing the tiles with minimal gaps between them, a professional installer fills in the grout and applies a sealant to the entire surface of the travertine.
Travertine floor maintenance
In order to keep your travertine floor in good condition, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions provided on the box.
Over time, the sealant and grout can erode, leaving your travertine floor vulnerable to seepage and discoloration. So you have to re-grout and seal each time to protect your travertine tiles.
Citrus juice and corrosive cleaning agents should be avoided as they can eat into the sealing and grout lines.
Never scrub your travertine tile floor. Gentle sweeping or vacuuming followed by damp mopping is all that is needed to keep it clean.
How to get the best price on travertine flooring
Amazon and BuildDirect seem to be some of the best places to buy travertine flooring from (sponsored links). Besides the best prices, their customer-friendly policies make shopping from them a pleasure.