“This luminous, creamy stone evokes earth, sand, and sea. The real deal can be surprisingly affordable, but is a tougher porcelain look-alike a better bet?” (thisoldhouse.com)
Subtle organic beauty marks StonePeak’s unglazed porcelain limestone. Featuring thru-body color variations and dimensionality of real limestone, while delivering precisely squared corners and greater durability than natural stone. And, like real limestone, no two StonePeak limestone tiles are alike.
How It’s Made
Although limestone can be quarried in the United States, many companies are still importing their slabs from overseas. Large limestone deposits can be found in the regions of the Caribbean Sea, Indian Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, Persian Gulf, around the Pacific Ocean islands, and within the Indonesian archipelago. Although these places contain many different types of Limestone, they all have one thing in common, and that is not being produced in the United States.
Shipping heavy, massive slabs is expensive, and many times this will be added on to the end price. Not only does this affect the added cost, but it also adds to the carbon footprint of the stone, which isn’t great from the start. The stone must be quarried and cut at the location, which permanently alters the landscape and changes the ecosystem. StonePeak tile is made locally from clay, sand, and feldspar, with a great amount of the materials (up to 98%) coming from recycled content.
Limestone is by definition a rock that contains at least 50% calcium carbonate in the form of calcite by weight. While this might seem irrelevant to the common consumer, calcite only ranks a 3 on the Mohs scale of hardness. With the scale ranging from 1-10, 3’s can be scratched rather easily, sometimes by objects as dense as a penny.
As mentioned earlier, porcelain tiles are made out of a mixture of clay, sand, and feldspar, which is a naturally occurring mineral in granite. The sand strengthens the mixture, while the feldspar melts, fusing together all the materials making the tile denser than a standard ceramic tile, thus stronger and more stain resistant. Porcelain usually ranks about an 8 on the Mohs scale, and is generally 30% stronger than granite. For an in-depth look at how our porcelain is made, click here.
How it’s cared for
Although natural stone does not offgas, it still can contain volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) as it is an extremely porous material, and it requires a penetrating sealant before and after the grouting process. On top of this, to keep future stains to a minimum this process must be repeated every one to two years.
To keep these slabs clean, you must use warm water with a natural stone cleaner. Deeper, more harsh stains can require a poultice.
Porcelain ceramics require no sealing whatsoever, as technical porcelain is fired to absorb less than 0.01% of liquids. To clean, simply wipe down with warm water or a neutral PH cleanser. Water resistant = stain resistant.
Here are other StonePeak porcelain tiles engineered to emulate stone
- Cesare Magnus (Travertine)
- Fossil (Fossilized Stone)
- Raja (Exotic Slate)
Read about how we are able to make these designs possible.
Before now, the only real benefit for choosing stone tile was the size of the quarried slab. That all changes with the introduction of our patented technology exclusive to our group. With the ability to produce porcelain tile in modular sizes up to 10 feet x 5 feet, with the look of stone, this truly is a win-win.
Plane, including amazing flexibility for its size, is crack resistant, mold resistant, heat and frost proof, with no artificial binders and no VOC emission.
Available in three beautiful colors, Plane is ideal for interiors, exteriors, countertops, veneers, and much more.
Thank you to Deborah Baldwin from thisoldhouse.com for providing material for this article.