Here are some quick and easy tips to install a great glass tile backsplash in your kitchen!
1) Check the Surface
The first thing you want to do is to ensure that the substrate (the surface the tile will adhere to) is structurally sound, clean and flat. The substrate creates the base for the rest of your backsplash project so it needs to be solid!
2) Start off level
You always want to start off of the countertops. The countertop should be perfectly level. You want to start with a full tile at the lowest point and move up. This way if you have to cut any tiles they will be under your cabinets, range hood etc. and be mostly out of sight.
3) Make the cuts
The next step is cutting the tile. Glass tile is very easy to work with using a wet saw and a diamond blade it cu ts like butter. It won’t splinter or shatter and will leave you with a very nice edge. As most people don’t own a wet saw there are many equipment rental places that rent them for around $50 a day. Using a wet saw not only ensures a clean cut but also reduces the heat on the material and the blade as well as minimizes dust!
4) Make it stick
There are a few methods for applying the morter/mastic. If you use a traditional mortar such as thinset or quikset we always recommend applying the first layer with the flat side of the trowel to ensure an even application that is completly adhered to the wall with no air pockets. After this is laid you would want to go back over the material with the notched side of the trowel to pull away any excess material and make a roughed up surface for the backsplash tile to stick to.
Tip: For easier application go with a pre-mixed mastic!
Another option to use to easily install any glass tile in a small area such as a backsplash is Bondera. Bondera is a sticky mat double sided adhesive which minimizes the tools and labor involved in installing your backsplash.
5) Lay the tile
Our 3″ x 6″ glass subway tile is perfect for any backsplash because it comes on a mesh backing for easy installation. It installs in one square foot sections easily. We still recommend using tile spacers especially between sheets to ensure perfect spacing of the glass. After the tile is adhered to your mastic of choice it generally should set for 24 hours and allow the mastic to dry.
Once the mastic is set its time to grout your new glass tile backsplash! You want to use a non-sanded grout and always use the grout float diagonally across the tile to ensure a complete fill of the space between the glass. Once this area is grouted you will want to sponge off any excess grout with a damp sponge. After drying you may still notice some haze on your new glass tile but another pass with a damp sponge should remove that permanently.
Congratulations! You have enhanced an often overlooked area of your home with beautiful glass tile. Your new glass tile backsplash will add beauty and value to your kitchen for years to come.
For more inspiring pictures of glass tile backsplashes be sure to check out our Photo Gallery!