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Home Improvement  /  August 28, 2015

How to Install a Stylish Kitchen Backsplash

Installing an attractive backsplash to your kitchen is a fantastic way to spruce it up while making your cooking area easier to clean. Additionally, with a plethora of designs and materials to choose from, you can get creative. Besides stone, glass, ceramic and porcelain tiles; metal ceiling tiles and mesh-backed mini mosaic tiles are popular choices that will form a durable and beautiful backsplash. If you’re hoping to install a stylish backsplash in your kitchen, Handyman Connection of Blue Ash has a few tips for you.

Metal tile installation
Durable and lightweight, metal ceiling tiles are available in tin, copper, stainless steel and embossed metal and are easy to work with. When installing metal tiles in your kitchen, begin at a bottom corner and work your way out to the end of the wall. Mark a square section of your wall according to the length of your panel, which is generally about 24 1/2 inches, and measure the wall’s height. Then mark your tile piece and cut it with a pair of sharp metal cutting shears, being careful to cut on the outside of the line. Cut areas for outlet boxes and switches, also.

Now apply liquid nail adhesive around the perimeter and middle of the back of the tile and firmly press it against your wall. Repeat these steps, making sure to carefully line up the nail rails with those on the previously installed piece. Attach matching brads within the nail rail holes. Lastly, caulk all the edges to seal, using a clear or coordinating-color caulk.

Mesh-backed ceramic or glass tile installation
While a bit more difficult to install than metal backsplash panels, ceramic and glass tile pieces with mesh backing will make cutting easier. First, prepare the area by cleaning the walls and taping over outlets, countertops and below your cabinets. Then move appliances and attach temporary ledger boards to support the first row of tile. Additionally, apply joint compound to uneven walls more than 1/16 inch. After it dries, sand and prime the area.

Prior to the installation process, locate a focal point and mark a vertical line that will serve as your starting point. Dry lay your first row of tiles along the edge to make sure both ends appear the same and adjust if needed. Keep in mind that tile backsplashes need a 1/8 inch expansion gap around the whole perimeter, and any tiles you have to cut can be installed under your cabinets.

Mix and apply thin-set mortar to the wall and comb it evenly around with a notched trowel, being careful not to cover any reference lines. Slightly twist your tile pieces in place and then gently press on it with a rubber float. If you need to cut any pieces, use a wet saw, mesh side up. For small cuts, use mosaic tile nippers. Continue installing your tile, working in small sections. Allow 24 hour for the mortar to dry. Easy-to-use adhesive tile mat can be used instead of mortar.

Lastly, apply the grout diagonally while pressing it into the joints. After 10 minutes, carefully wipe off any excess with a sponge. When it is dry, apply grout sealer if you wish and fill expansion gaps with silicone sealant or caulk.

Count on Handyman Connection of Blue Ash to take care of your home remodeling and maintenance needs. Whether you have a small repair or a major home improvement project, you can put your confidence in our skilled craftsmen to get the job done right the first time, guaranteed! Contact us online today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.

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