WHAT ARE CERAMICS?
The term ‘ceramic’ does not have a single definition but many. To us, however, the best adjective to describe ceramics is clean. And cleanliness means healthy living. For this reason and many more, ceramics are important as well as indispensable objects in our lives.
A ceramic, as the most basic definition suggests, is “clay fired at very high temperatures.” The history of ceramics is as old as the history of civilization. We know that the first ceramics were produced in Asia Minor in 6,000 BC. Pottery unearthed in the Çatalhöyük excavations has remained intact for 8,000 years.
For archeologists, some of the most important sources of information on the history of man are ceramic remains. It is possible to extract information about the life styles and cultures of ancient civilizations from the inscriptions, illustrations and symbols found on ceramics, which remain intact for thousands of centuries.
Today, ceramic tiles are an important decorative element installed on the interior and exterior of buildings as well as on floors. They are made of ground clay, kaolinite, quartz and feldspar obtained from the nature and mixed at certain ratios. These materials are then kneaded, pressed, and fired at temperatures over 1,100°C. Usually a protective layer called a glaze is applied to the surface of ceramics.
Ceramics are healthy because they are made of materials obtained from nature. Ceramics are ecological products.
- CERAMICS ARE HEALTHY
- They do not collect dirt, stain or rust.
- They do not raise dust or cause humidity.
- Their smooth and polished surface does not harbor microbes or pests.
- The bad and harmful odors in the environment (such as smoke and cooking odors) do not cling on ceramics.
- Thanks to their natural make-up, they do not release noxious chemicals to the environment.
- They do not have a negative impact on infant and child health.
- They do not pose a conducive environment to asthma, bronchitis and allergic conditions.
- They preserve the natural ambient humidity and do not cause dryness of skin.
- They are easy to clean with simple detergents, and have a long life span.
- CERAMICS ARE DURABLE
- Even the most aggressive detergents cannot abrade ceramics.
- They are resistant against accidental acid and base spills.
- They do not rot or decompose.
- Their lifespan is equal to that of buildings, if installed properly (i.e. 40 years).
- Sunrays not cause their colors to fade, or discoloration.
- They do not crack in cold or expand in heat; they are difficult to scratch and abrade.
- Long term contact with chemicals does not affect ceramics.
- They are abrasion-resistant.
- Ceramics are heavy-duty.
- CERAMICS ARE ECONOMICAL
- Ceramics are the longest-lasting tiling and flooring materials.
- They do not require special maintenance and they last a lifetime.
- They are non-flammable and fireproof, and they prevent fires from spreading.
- They do not require a complete replacement, just the replacement of a broken tile.
- They come in decorative options, thus offer savings from decoration costs.
- They are the most economical option in the long term, considering total costs.
- They have a very low cleaning and maintenance cost; they do not require special detergents.
- They reduce heating costs.
- CERAMICS ARE AESTHETIC
- They fit all ambiances, structures and textures.
- They come in all colors and shades, from pastels to vibrant colors.
- Pictures, illustrations and photographs may be printed on them.
- The richness of shapes and sizes inspire creativity in decoration.
- Refractions and reflections create a soothing effect on the soul.
- Ceramics always look well-kept.
- The flooring style alone may create a different look.
- Ceramics add to the joy of living and increase the quality of life.
- They add prestige to their environment.
- CERAMICS ARE ECOLOGICAL
- Their raw material is from the nature itself. They are made up of the pressing and firing of natural minerals. In this process, no chemical waste is released to the environment.
- Ceramics are recyclable. During recycling, no materials are lost.
- They are produced with clean energy (i.e. electricity), meaning that no noxious gasses are released to the atmosphere.
- CERAMICS OFFER ENDLESS OPTIONS
- There are ceramics for all life-styles and all tastes.
- It is possible to produce ceramics in all colors of nature.
- All sorts of illustrations may be printed on ceramics.
- Textured ceramics inspire creativity in decoration.
- They come in different forms such as squares, rectangles, as well as hexagonal and octagonal shapes.
- CERAMICS ARE FUNCTIONAL
- Ceramics are not only tiling or flooring materials.
- When applied on façades, they give better results than paint and plaster.
- They are used as decorative elements in interior decoration.
- There is less heat-loss in ceramic tiled spaces.
- Ceramics reduce the impact of noise.
- CERAMICS MITIGATE RISKS
- Ceramics are non-flammable and fireproof because they are made of materials fired at 1100 degrees and above. Ceramic tiled walls and floors prevent fires caused by negligence and accidents from spreading.
- Unlike other tiling and flooring materials, ceramics do not possess static electricity. The static electricity accumulated in humans and animals are absorbed by ceramics. Static electricity is a cause of stress for humans and animals alike. Ceramics remove the stressor from the environment, allowing people to relax.
- They prevent home infections. The surface of ceramics is smooth, thus easy to clean. Dusts and particles, harmful for the respiratory tract, do not accumulate in ceramic tiled spaces.
- They prevent heat loss. They provide significant savings in heating. They absorb and store heat in closed spaces as the temperature rises, and they emit heat when the temperature falls.
Resource: “Seramik’in Alfabesi” (The Alphabet of Ceramics), Turkish Ceramic Federation