Glazed Tile PEI (Porcelain Enamel Institute) Rating Explained

What does PEI rating mean?

Porcelain Enamel Institute (PEI) rating helps you determine the hardness and durability of your tiles. This scale was designed to help create reliable standards for consumers when choosing which tiles to use for which applications. This scale is used to measure the hardness and durability of both ceramic and porcelain tiles, but due to the natural hardness built into porcelain tiles, it is generally more applicable to ceramic.

Why is PEI important?

When it comes to choosing the right tile, it’s important to remember that not all tiles are suitable for all situations. For example, the shiny wall tiles in your bathroom would struggle with the footfall on your kitchen floor. You wouldn’t want to install a tiled floor only for it to look cracked and aged six months later. Thankfully, PEI Ratings act as a guide for discovering which tile suits your needs.

How is PEI measured?

PEI ratings are determined by a measurement of Abrasion Resistance measured on a Rotary Abrasion Resistance Testing Machine. This machine counts the number of revolutions under a standard abrasive load. The machine works by rotating steel ball bearings on the surface of a tile for a given number of rotations. When the tile shows signs of damage the revolutions are counted (from 150 to 1500+). This gives the PEI rating.

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What are the different PEI ratings?

PEI is measured on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the weakest and least durable and 5 being the strongest and most durable.

Class 1 - This is the weakest of all standard grade ceramic tiles and should never be used underfoot. Suitable for wall applications only.

Class 2 - Can be used on residential interior floors but should not be used in areas such as kitchens, entryways, and stairs that are subject to a high footfall.

Class 3 - Can be used for any residential or light commercial application. The only place that they are not recommended is in heavy traffic commercial areas, like banks and restaurants.

Class 4 - Can be used for any residential and most commercial applications. These tiles are durable enough to be used in such heavy traffic areas as shopping malls.

Class 5 - The most durable and can be used for all residential, commercial, and even industrial applications where extreme durability is a must.



Stay informed about PEI ratings by learning how Kastus Ceramics allows you to achieve a ceramic tile surface of PEI rating 4 or greater!