If you are considering the use of tile outdoors and you live in a temperate zone where freeze/thaw conditions are present, you must only use those tile products which the manufacturer has tested and approved for freeze/thaw cycles. We will indicate either “Yes” or “No” as to whether the product is suitable for exterior applications or not.
However, not all products that are suitable for exterior applications are suitable for horizontal (exterior floor) applications due to slip resistance. Please be sure to work with your sales person or contractor to determine if the tile in question has a suitable slip resistance for your exterior application.
Often referred to as coefficient of friction (COF), it refers to the relative slipperiness of a tile. The tile industry is currently transitioning from an old testing method to a newer and improved method. Therefore, you may find technical specifications using the old method as they had not been updated. The old method, called SCOF (Static Coefficient of Friction), had a dry value and a wet value where it was suggested that any wet value of >.60 was preferred.
The newer, consistent method, DCOF (Dynamic Coefficient Of Friction) AcuTest, is much more accurate and has only one value which is a measurement of when the tile is wet. As stated by the TCNA (Tile Council of North America) ANSI A137.1-2012 says that “ceramic tiles selected for level interior spaces expected to be walked upon must have a minimum wet DCOF AcuTest value of > 0.42. Tiles with a lower value are not necessarily restricted to dry areas only, but rather are restricted to applications where they are kept dry when walked upon. In the case of residential bathrooms, the common use of bathmats can accomplish this. Similarly, in entranceways, the use of entrance mats can accomplish the same.
Note that in some technical specification charts either “pass” or “fail” will be noted under the DCOF heading.