To select the materials that will cover the floor and walls of your home, it is important that you think about the use of each area and if it is exposed to meteorological factors,
Types of stones for cladding
There are several types of natural stone that you can use as wall and floor coverings, both indoors and outdoors. Some of the most popular are:
- Limestone: They are very resistant stones, permeable and easy to cut. Regarding its aesthetics, it presents veins or small grooves that give each piece a very characteristic texture. You can also find it in different shades.
- Slate: By nature it is opaque and is placed mainly on walls, both interior and exterior. It has a great resistance to humidity and does not change color with exposure to the sun. It is ideal for areas where considerable temperature changes are experienced.
- Granite: It is a stone with great hardness and resistance. It is composed of quartz, feldspar and mica. It is more expensive than other types of natural stone, but its aesthetics and characteristics make it an excellent alternative for walls, floors, and even kitchen countertops.
- Sandstone: It is very versatile. Although its main use is for exterior wall cladding, it can be used indoors and even polished to obtain shiny pieces and a very original aesthetic.
On the other hand, there is a wide variety of synthetic and semi-synthetic stones on the market that imitate natural ones very well . Some are even superior in some respects. You can consult with your mason what is the best option.
These are mainly found in 2 presentations:
- Loose pieces with different shapes and dimensions. They are a bit more complicated to install, they require more maintenance in most cases.
- larger panels. They are easier to install.
Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of both natural and artificial stone cladding will help you make the best choice between the two types.
Advantages and disadvantages of stone cladding
Walls, floors, columns and other construction elements covered with stone are very popular. These can be natural or synthetic, but their finishes are always beautiful, resistant and highly durable.
Next, we will tell you what are the advantages and not so positive points of these types of cladding depending on the type of stone you choose.
Natural stone cladding
- hardness and durability
Natural stone is a material that is highly resistant to wear , knocks, scratches, changes in temperature, humidity and other factors. This means that it does not deteriorate easily and lasts much longer with little maintenance and without the need to replace it.
For this reason, natural stone is ideal for exterior walls or if you want to renovate your bathroom and give it an elegant and rustic style at the same time.
- sustainable material
Natural stones are totally organic, so they do not cause any damage to the environment. Also, they are reusable. That is, in case you want to replace the stone with another material, the extracted ones can be used in another project.
The same happens if the property has reached its useful life and must be demolished. Natural stones can be mined for new uses.
One of the most applauded characteristics of natural stone cladding is that it has a good level of insulation. Both thermal and acoustic.
Placing natural stone cladding on the facade of your house or inside will help you maintain a comfortable temperature regardless of the time of year. So you will save on air conditioning systems.
On the other hand. They prevent sound waves from entering or leaving the house because the stone has a great mass.
One of the few drawbacks or disadvantages of using natural stone as a wall or floor covering is its price.
The cost of natural stones in most cases is much higher than that of synthetic or other materials. But considering that they are durable, resistant and also with a beautiful aesthetic. it’s worth the expense.
Another factor that makes natural stone cladding more expensive is labor. Since trained personnel are required for its installation.
Artificial stone cladding
- Aesthetics similar to that of natural stones
Artificial or synthetic stones have finishes that closely resemble that of natural stones. Even in some cases it is difficult to differentiate them with the naked eye.
You can also find a wide variety of colors and textures. This allows you to be more creative and place elements covered with stone to decorate the hall , the kitchen or other spaces.
- They are very versatile
Synthetic stones can be placed on different surfaces without so many complications.
To avoid related construction work, remove old coatings. Many people prefer to place on top materials that are easy to install and have good characteristics. For example, artificial stones.
On the other hand, artificial stones are lighter than natural ones . This means that placing them in elevated areas does not represent a great load job.
You can place this type of stone not only on the facade of your home, but also on interior walls, columns, in swimming pools, gardens and many other elements.
Synthetic or artificial stones are cheaper than natural ones. Therefore, placing or replacing the linings of your home with this type of material will not be so expensive. And you can enjoy elegant and rustic stone finishes.
- They are almost impossible to repair
Artificial stones, when broken, are very difficult to repair. In some cases even impossible. So if this happens it should be removed and replaced with a new part.
- They deteriorate more easily
Although synthetic stones have good resistance, it is easier for them to be damaged or deteriorate. Especially if there are very hot items around it.
Having a small percentage of resin in its composition can burn. This means that if there is a heat source very close to the stone or they come into contact with it, it will be damaged. For this reason, this type of material is not recommended for making kitchen countertops, since, for example, when placing a hot pot on it, it will burn.
What should you know before laying stone cladding?
- Make sure you measure the surface where you will place the stone cladding. Whether they are loose stones or sheets. This will allow you to purchase the exact amount of material and avoid overspending and delays.
- Some types of stones should only be placed by experts. Since with poor handling they can break or be poorly fixed to the surface. The loose pieces, in general, are more complicated to place than the sheets.
- Although synthetic stones have good properties, they do not match the characteristics of natural ones.
- Whether they are artificial or natural stones, their maintenance is very simple . Furthermore, it is not performed as consistently as is the case with other materials.
Tips to keep stone cladding longer
One of the advantages of stone coatings is that they require little maintenance. This one is quite simple and you can do it on your own.
use special products
If the stones develop mold or are very dirty, both on their surface and in their cracks and joints. We recommend using specialized products to clean stones. These are easy to get.
Ideally, the cleaning product does not have corrosive components. Since these can damage or negatively affect the surface of the stone. To use them, you just have to follow the instructions of each manufacturer.
Home methods are also effective
One of the best ways to clean natural stone floors and walls is with steam or pressurized water. This method, in addition to being effective, does not deteriorate them.
You can help by vigorously rubbing with a brush to remove dirt or mold that has adhered to the surface of the stones.
For stone tiles that are a little smoother and more polished, we recommend using water with vinegar. This helps them keep their shine.
If you are going to use soap to clean the stones, it is important that it is neutral. And remove it very well after applying it. Otherwise the surface could become stained or lose its natural shine.
Sealing of joints from time to time
In the case of cladding with small pieces of stone. It is important that every 2 or 3 years you seal the joints. This prevents moisture from penetrating the wall or floor and damaging it. In addition, it allows maintaining the aesthetics of the structural element.
Stones are an excellent option to cover walls, floors and other elements of your home. They are resistant, durable and have a unique and elegant aesthetic. There are different types to suit your budget and the needs of your home.
Choose the best material to cover the walls and floors of your home, taking into account the advantages and disadvantages of stone cladding.