Greasy or sauce-laden splashes are a pain to clean off of painted walls, but with a properly installed tile backsplash, cleanup is a breeze! Glass tile is a particularly good choice not only because it is beautiful, but is extremely stain resistant and wipes clean with little to no effort. Here is how to install a glass tile backsplash in your kitchen.

You will need:

  • Glass tile of your choice
  • Grout
  • Thinset
  • Tile cutters
  • Tape

Step 1:

Turn off the power and gas (if applicable) to the appliances in the area and move the stove to an area that is out of the way.

Step 2:

Use drywall screws to attach a small board across the bottom area that is to be the end of your backspalsh – usually 1/8″ above  the top of your stove. Lay down scrap cardboard on the counters to act as a spacer and prevent them from being damaged during the process.

Step 3:

Use a medium-grain sanding block or sponge to rough up the surface of the pain on your wall. Hold the block or sponge in your hand and work in moderate circles to rough up the entire area where your backsplash will be. Use a large dry paintbrush to brush away some of the dust from the wall if needed.

Step 4:

Now you can mark a line across the top of your placeholder board to mark the bottom of your backsplash and then choose where you would like the focal point to be in your design. An easy and natural choice is in the center. Measure the horizontal center of this area, and mark this centerline on the ledger with painter’s tape so that it’s visible as you install tile on the wall.

Step 5: 

Now, if you are designing your backsplash by hand you will need to use individual tiles to build whatever image you desire. For an easier approach, use sheets of glass tile in the color of your choice. Use thumbtacks to attach the sheets of tile to the DRY wall to be sure they fit. Cut and add wherever necessary to create as clean a fit as possible.

Step 6:

Take the tile sheets down, making sure to lay them face down on a flat surface in the same order as they were on the wall. Apply your thin set to the wall.

Tip: If the area you are working on is large, you may want to do steps 6 and 7 in stages to make it easier!

Step 7:

Begin applying the tile sheets in the same order as before. Apply even pressure over the entire surface of each sheet of tile to ensure it really takes hold in the Thinset. Use a dry grout float or even a board and hammer to very lightly to the tiles into place where necessary.

Step 8:

After you’ve applied the tile to the wall and made sure it is firmly stuck there, use a damp sponge to wipe off any adhesive that may be on the surface of the tiles.

Step 9:

Now apply your grout to the tiled surface using the float, Be sure to really fill in any gaps between tiles for a smooth, clean look.

Step 10:

Using a caulk gun and the right acrylic caulk for your grout, apply a seal all around the edges of the backsplash area, where the tiles meet your walls, cabinets, and counters. Let cure for a couple of hours. Reinstall the electrical receptacles, using longer screws if necessary. Remove the board ledger before replacing the range.

Step 11:

Now use a wet sponge and a bucket to clean the excess grout from the top of the tiles and any that may have gotten onto areas no intended.

Step 12:

Allow the grout to set for about 48 hours and then apply sealant. You are done – congratulations on your gorgeous new backsplash!

Step 13:

Move all appliances back to their proper place.

If you need help finding the perfect tile and size for your backsplash design, give one of our friendly customer service representatives a call.