While it is a very hard product. The beauty of it runs deep, there are so many styles from contemporary to natural stone looks without going to the expense of the real stone.
Porcelain and ceramic come in a variety of sizes, styles and colors. Porcelain is required for any outside installation because of the low absorption rate when temperatures can get below freezing. Ceramic and porcelain are measured on a PEI scale.
Ceramic has a surface area on top. This is also true of glazed porcelain. Thru body porcelain goes all the way thru the tile.
The tile industry has grown over the years. Formats range from 2x2 to 30x30. They also offer different shapes such as round and hexagons, some customers prefer warmer tiles and that can be addressed by adding heating coils under the tile.
One tip. Always have an extra box for repairs as manufactures some tile discontinue products.
Always have extra tile and grout on hand for repairs. You must keep grout in a dry area and tile can be stored anywhere.
There are several types of grout you can order from basic to epoxy. The better the grout you buy the better stain resistant you get. As a consumer it is important you make sure you don't get the most basic and leave it up to the installer to supply. Just know most of the time you will get the least expensive if left up to just the installer. You can clean the grout if stained then seal it would be the easiest fix if the lower quality is used.
As long as the shower is waterproofed correctly when installed, the cracks are no more than an appearance issue. You can scratch that out and use a grout color match caulk to eliminate that issue.
You can eliminate this issue with floor heat normally used in bathrooms but it can be installed throughout the house.
Your best protection for this is installing a membrane on the concrete before installing the tile. This is called crack isolation membrane and it will isolate the crack to the grout joint for an easy repair.
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