Looking for slate flooring pros and cons? Slate is a natural stone with a longstanding tradition as an ideal construction material. The stone is primarily made up of quartz, feldspar, and other chlorite group minerals.
Due to its fine aesthetic and extreme durability, it has been used in real estate for different purposes over the centuries, including flooring, walling, and roofing.
Slate floorings are quite popular nowadays and are widely regarded among the best flooring options in the real estate market today. However, like every other flooring material, Slate has its merits and drawbacks.
If you are considering using Slate as the flooring material in your home or are wondering whether it would be a perfect choice for your home, it would be best to learn about the various slate flooring pros and cons so you can make an informed decision.
The Pros of Slate Flooring
1. Extremely Durable
One of the slate flooring pros that often pique the interest of many real estate owners is its durability. Slate offers superior durability compared to many other available flooring options out there.
The stone's formation process, which involves a combination of heat and pressure within the Earth's crust, makes it extremely hard.
Although Slate's hardness varies depending on its composition and formation, it remains one of the hardest natural stone flooring materials.
The Mohs hardness scale, which measures a mineral's resistance to scratching or abrasion, ranks Slate between 2.5 to 4 – meaning it is almost as hard as marble or limestone.
This hardness makes it a fantastic flooring choice because it stands a better chance of resisting wear and tear than other flooring options.
Slate flooring can be used in different places in a home, including bathrooms and kitchens. If properly maintained, it can last for centuries without any damage.
2. Fire and Water-Resistant
Not many flooring materials in the market today come with the bonus of being both fire and water-resistant.
Slate's ability to naturally resist fire and water is also one of the slate flooring pros that makes it an excellent choice for most homes because it offers additional safety and security.
These unique abilities also contribute to its durability, as it can withstand both fire and water hazards.
Slate has a water absorption index of less than 0.4%, making it waterproof and ideal for outdoor and indoor areas prone to regular contact with water, such as bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and patios.
Its low water absorption surface also makes it safe to walk on when wet without the risk of accidentally slipping and falling.
3. Increases the Value of a Property
Flooring contributes to the overall value of your home since almost every potential home buyer loves a floor that is long-lasting and easy to maintain.
Whether you intend to sell your home soon or anytime in the future, it would interest you to know that slate flooring can drive up the value of a property. Homeowners who install stone floorings can net up to 70% returns on their investment.
Slate flooring is among the few good flooring choices you can make today to increase the value of your property. Because there are many slate flooring pros, it is one of the most popular flooring choices for home buyers.
As a result, it can be among the factors that would help you find buyers for your home faster.
5. Beautiful Aesthetics
Slate is aesthetically pleasing to behold. There are diverse patterns, colors, and surface textures of slate flooring, giving you the flexibility to choose whichever appeals to you the most.
Since it is cut from a natural stone, no one Slate is the same. Slate can be found in various parts of the world, including Europe, Asia, and America.
Their appearance tends to vary depending on where the stone is sourced from and the mineral composition. Its color includes vibrant hues of green, blue, purple, black, etc.
Typically, Slate flooring comes in a natural cleft finish that maintains some of the stone's roughness. There are polished slate floorings for people who prefer something sleek and smooth.
5. Versatile Use Case
Slate is a versatile flooring material with numerous use cases. The stone can be used as an ideal flooring choice in various locations within a home, such as the living room, bathroom, kitchen, etc.
You can use it in prominent or high traffic areas within and outside the home, including the garage, poolside, etc.
Since slate floorings are available in diverse designs and hues, it is easy to find one that matches or compliments the interior design of any location you want to use it.
Also, its hardness and extreme durability allow it to withstand most abuse that floors suffer in any location, such as furniture scrapings, scratches from pets, water spillages, etc.
The Cons of Slate Flooring
Slate is not an ideal flooring option for homeowners who do not want to dig deep into their pockets.
One of the slate flooring cons homeowners who want to use the natural stone as the flooring choice in their home need to be aware of is the high cost of purchasing it, especially if they opt for the top-quality ones that guarantee longer durability.
Another thing that makes slate flooring costly compared to other options is that only professionals can handle its installation process because special tools are needed to cut the stone.
As a result, homeowners would need to set aside money to hire professionals after purchasing the material. All of these put together make slate flooring costly.
2. Difficult to Install
It is difficult to install slate floorings because of their weight and hardness. Due to the technicality of the installation, homeowners need to hire experienced flooring contractors to handle the job.
First of all, special tools are needed to cut the slate tiles when installing them in small areas. The subfloor that would carry the slate tiles must be well prepared to avoid problems, such as the slate cracking under its weight.
The subfloor must also be perfectly flat for the slate tiles to be installed properly. If it isn't flat enough, the flooring contractor would need to create a leveled subfloor before proceeding with the installation.
One other slate flooring cons to bear in mind is that it can be painful to stand on or walk on after a long time due to its hardness. Also, accidentally falling on the floor would cause more pain and injury than softer flooring options.
4. Difficult to Replace
Replacing slate tiles if damages occur in the future is difficult because each slate tiles are unique. It may be impossible to find another slate that matches the existing one.
Homeowners may be forced to settle for a slate with different colors and patterns or replace the entire flooring to achieve uniformity.
Slate flooring can break or crack under certain conditions despite its hardness. Although it has a better chance of withstanding wear and tear than many other flooring options, a strong impact from a heavy object can break or crack a slate floor.
Since replacing a cracked slate is difficult and almost impossible to find an exact match with the existing one, homeowners who install slate flooring need to be extra cautious when moving sharp or heavy objects.
After weighing all these slate flooring pros and cons, it is sufficient to conclude that it is one of the best flooring choices for many homes due to its durability and numerous use cases.
Although the cost of purchasing and installing it may seem discouraging, homeowners would find that it is a worthwhile investment as it would outlast most cheap flooring materials in the long run and raise their property's resale value.