LCEMapp
LCEMapp
  • Hometalker
  • San Antonio, TX
Asked on Mar 2, 2013

Travertine in wet areas

KMS WoodworksWoodbridge Environmental Tiptophouse.com

Answered

I have tumbled travertine in the kitchen as a backsplash and it is beautiful. Can I use this for our wet area floors? The description of the tile I would like says it is partially filled. What does that mean and what kind of seal can be applied to protect it? I would like to carry it in to the new walk in shower using the smaller tiles in the same pattern. Is this a good idea?
3 answers
  • KMS Woodworks
    on Mar 2, 2013

    Travertine is a type of marble and is a classic but it tends to stain more than some other stones. Being a type of marble it often has voids where part of the material has been dissolved away during its internment in the ground. Some of these voids add character while others can be big enough to pose structural issues and lead to fractures and breakage. Some stone manufacturers will fill these voids with a type of epoxy resin to stabilize the tile, they also fill many of the "holes" that would also pose cleaning issues. The "degree" of the fill varies greatly from one manufacturer to another and in my opinion can be nice looking to darn right ugly. Higher quality stone will have less voids, and the fill will be clean and nearly invisible. I would like to see a good selection of the actually product before committing to buy. one or two on a sample card are often not representative.

  • We have used Travertine tile in many showers and bathrooms. Grouting is going to fill the tiny voids in the surface of the tile, so be sure to pick a grout that blends into the tile and not an accent or you will see all the specks show up. When wet the grout will show up, but once dry it disappears. It is very important that you do not use this for the shower floor. It is porous and because of the imperfections it can get quite dirty and difficult to clean. But for walls it is a great product. It can also be used for main bath floor however. You need to install properly over Kirdi mat or any water proof membrane surface and be sure to seal the surface of the tile well. If you to minimize the amount of grout that fills the voids on the tile. Seal the tile prior to grouting. So when cleaning the new soft grout off you will remove most of what has been trapped in the surface. The photos below was a bath in progress we worked on a few years ago. It was a walk in shower for handicap person so no threshold for the shower. These are work in progress photos of the bath which was completely done with Travertine tile. The photos are hiding the floor with cardboard. But a mosaic tile floor was installed all Travertine as well which can be seen by one last photo on the view from the door that was once the bedroom closet door opening.

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  • KMS Woodworks
    on Mar 3, 2013

    Here are a few more trav pics. I to do not recommend it for a shower floor, for that you can get a ceramic mosaic that looks pretty close.

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