Selecting the right paving system from a host of traditional paving solutions can be a challenging process. Especially, when you have to deal with issues such as slip resistance, durability, susceptibility to staining, safety, effects of pool chemicals, resistance to mould, installation problems and maintenance, among many more.

There are many paving solutions for both indoor and outdoor settings. While some may score well on appearance, they may not do so well on technical performance metrics. Those that hit the mark on performance could, conversely, turn out a tad disappointing visually.

Should selecting a paving solution become an exercise in compromise just because there isn’t one solution that delivers both technical performance and pure style?

Not if you get porcelain stoneware, an innovative solution for both indoor flooring and outdoor paving that overcomes the issues and challenges presented by popular choices such as traditional stone, terracotta and concrete paving. Porcelain stoneware offers a safe and practical design solution that combines high technical and visual performance in one package.

Made from a fusion of raw materials such as sand, quartz, feldspars, kaolin, clay and natural colourants, porcelain stoneware is fired at temperatures above 1230 degrees Celsius, producing a paver with exceptional hardness, practically no absorption capabilities, and unmatched mechanical characteristics.

The 7 benefits of porcelain stoneware:

1. Resists chemicals, stains, loads and thermal shock

Porcelain stoneware is resistant to traditional paving’s biggest challenges such as chemicals (acids, chemical agents, salt and verdigris); stains (oil, mould, moss and dark smudges); loads, with every slab able to withstand over 1000kg; and thermal shock. Being frost-free, its properties remain unchanged between -50 degrees C and +60 degrees C. Since stains cannot saturate through the surface, it retains its looks and colour.

2. Easy to clean and maintain

Unlike natural stone, concrete and terracotta paving solutions, porcelain stoneware paving requires no special or seasonal treatment to protect it from staining. It’s simply and easily cleaned using a pressure washer. 

3. Simple and versatile to lay

Most traditional pavers must be laid on a bed of sand or with adhesives by a professional tiler. However, porcelain stoneware can be easily installed by a variety of tradespeople. It can also be laid on grass, sand or gravel, with an adhesive, or by using a pedestal system or the innovative e-base system.

The e-base system is a raised flooring system that’s fast to fit and equipped with a load bearing structure in polypropylene. When laid with porcelain stoneware, the polypropylene structure meets maximum safety standards, even in the event of breakage. There's no need for any reinforcement system on the back of the porcelain slabs; height adjustable supports are used to overcome differences in the level of the screed, guaranteeing a completely flat and stable walking surface. 

4. Easy to remove

Traditional paving solutions, once installed, are for life. But porcelain stoneware offers a flexible design solution because it’s completely removable, serviceable and reusable. It weighs just 17kg per 600mm x 600mm slab.

5. Variety of finishes and trims

Porcelain stoneware paving is highly versatile, allowing you to achieve a wide range of looks from traditional stone and wood to metal or concrete. Porcelain stoneware’s special trims also deliver uncompromising style and comfort. For instance, the UNICO double sided special trim is processed on both sides - one side with rounded edge, and the other with a square edge – and can be used as a step as well as for pool coping.

6. Completely versatile end uses

Porcelain stoneware is durable, resistant to traditional paving irritants and safe for end users. You can select it for indoor or outdoor use in residential and commercial projects on terraces, paths, stairways, gardens, driveways, benches, patios, swimming pools, stepping stones, indoor living rooms or bathroom flooring and street furnishing, to name a few.

7. Significantly safer

Traditional paving solutions are habitual offenders when it comes to creating slippery surfaces; this has meant that many sought after solutions such as glazed tiles or polished stone are not suitable for use around pools and other wet areas. The structured surface of porcelain stoneware creates slip resistant flooring and paving, making it so much safer and suitable for both wet and dry areas.

Consider porcelain stoneware from Robertson's Building Products Pty Ltd for indoor flooring as well as outdoor paving when designing your next residential or commercial project.