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Wood tile: a hardwood substitute

Updated on September 16, 2014

The hardwood downside

Hardwood flooring is beautiful and elegant but putting it in your bathroom is like flushing money down the toilet. No, seriously, it really is. Hardwood was never meant for humid temperatures, in fact that’s how wood rots. Moist wood is the perfect breeding ground for decomposing fungi that LOVE to eat your wood. Sounds pretty gruesome right?

So what do you do?

Well, you could (A) not install hardwood in your bathroom or (B) you could substitute wood tile instead.

Samples of wood look tile

Wood tile -the bathroom hardwood substitute

Wood tile is just what you’re thinking, it’s ceramic or porcelain tile that’s fully colored, weathered and textured to look like real hardwood planks. If you don’t believe it check out this video clip of some wood tile samples in New Zealand.

-Don't worry you can totally find wood tile in the United States-


Have you used wood tile in the past? How would you rate it?

4 out of 5 stars from 4 ratings of Wood Tile

Ceramic vs. Porcelaine Tile

You can find wood tile in both ceramic and porcelain. One of the big differences between the two is that ceramic absorbs water and porcelain doesn’t. According to Bryan Blair, with Valley Tile, even ceramic does absorb water, it's still a good option for the average household bathroom. The absorbed water won’t destroy your wood tile like it destroys hardwood. You will have to clean your ceramic wood tile more than porcelain because of its coarse, dirt attracting surface. Also, because ceramic is softer than porcelain, it's best installed indoors.

Works great with pets

The benefits of wood tile don’t stop at the bathroom, they’re also a great option If you have pets. Hardwood is easily scratched and destroyed by dog or cat claws, accidents, and spillable water dishes. Wood tile is resistant to all of these. If your pet does have an accident when you’re away from home, you can clean it up easy with a sanitized rag. If your tile is porcelain, there's no need to worry about it staining or absorbing the mess either.

Easy to install

Installing hardwood flooring is a much longer process than wood tile. You have to nail each plank in place, which can take a long time if you don’t have the right tools. Wood tile is easily installed by simply placing your tile, adding grout and cleaning up. You want to pick a grout color that’s going to blend in with the tile so as to create a realistic hardwood effect. The nice thing about wood tile is that it comes in a wide range of plank sizes at more affordable prices than hardwood. Watch this clip for a more detailed explanation of wood tile installation.

How soon will you install wood look tile?

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Cleaning wood tile

Cleaning wood tile is simple and easier than cleaning hardwood. If you get in the habit of sweeping regularly and going over sticky spots with a damp rag, you’ll do great.

-Never use highly abrasive tools, like steel wool to clean your tile. This will destroy it.


Something different

Wood tile is not only a great hardwood substitute but it’s also just plain something different. As a new product on the market, wood tile can be both a rare and unique addition to your home. Install it in your bathroom or throughout your home. It’s an affordable wood substitute that will stand the test of pets, water, and time.

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    • Ilaria Marchi profile image

      Ilaria Marchi 

      5 years ago

      I love porcelain stoneware wood tiles! I have them in my kitchen (these: ) , I had a leak but no problems and they don't require particular maintenance.



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