When shopping for stone flooring, consider the absorption rating. The absorption rating refers to how porous the given stone material is. The more absorbent, the more vulnerable it is to cracking and staining damage. There are different absorption rates:
- Granite is nearly impervious to water, even when unsealed.
- Travertine, slate and limestone have normal absorbency.
Compared to honed or cleft surfaces, polished stone materials are less absorbent to water. You should grade some stone flooring retailers to evaluate the quality of the materials. Look for shape, thickness, and size. The grading system comes in three levels:
- Grade 1: The highest quality of materials
- Grade 2: May have some minor defects, such as scratches
- Grade 3: Consists of major flaws making them suitable only for accent pieces
Co-efficient of friction measures and compares how slippery the stone material is. It's an important consideration if you have kids, pets, or someone with physical limitations living in your home. Marble is slippery when wet. If you're concerned about this, consider slate. Slate provides a decent grip. You can also have an anti-slip surface coating applied.