(BPT) – The cost of complex kitchen renovations often prevents homeowners from improving the appearance of this important space. However, installing a new backsplash with contemporary glass or mosaic tile is one of the fastest, easiest, most affordable and often overlooked projects for dramatically updating a tired kitchen. Paired with paint and simple cabinet hardware changes, you can transform the entire look of your kitchen without hiring a professional.
Until recently, the process of installing a kitchen backsplash was intimidating and better left to a contractor with experience working with mortars and grouts. That is no longer the case as high-strength installation alternatives like SimpleMat replace messy thin-set mortars and mastics for bonding tiles to a wall. In addition, ready-to-use professional quality grouts have come a long way. Products like Fusion Pro grout provide new levels of stain resistance. They don’t need to be sealed, they don’t require mixing to ensure consistent color performance and are easy to install. The best grouts offer a stain-proof, color perfect guarantee.
How to install a kitchen backsplash:
Remember to put safety first when working on home projects. Follow manufacturer recommendations and wear eye protection and gloves as needed.
* If necessary, remove any wallpaper, tile or other existing materials covering the wall where the backsplash will be installed. In addition, make repairs to any damage to the wall to create a flat, smooth surface for the tile.
* Measure your backsplash to determine the amount of tile, setting mat and grout needed for the project.
* Wipe clean your drywall or backerboard to remove surface dust or contaminants.
* Cut the two-sided adhesive mat to size, peel the back to expose the adhesive and apply to the wall.
* Lay out and cut your tile in desired sizes and shapes. Remove the release liner to expose the adhesive ridges on the front of the mat. You do not need mortar. Set the tile in place using tile spacers, then gently push the tile into the mat using your hand or a flat surface to lock the tile into position. Mosaic tiles often come on 12” x 12” sheets that are already spaced for even easier application.
* Within 24 hours after applying the two-sided adhesive, grout the project. Wet the tile and spread the grout using a grout float at a 45-degree angle. Be sure the grout fills every joint.
* Remove excess grout and then wipe clean with a sponge and microfiber towel.
* Repeat the process until the backsplash is complete.
With the wide variety of tile sizes, shapes and colors as well as the complementary grout colors on the market today, homeowners are only limited by their own creativity when installing an elegant and functional backsplash. For more information on products and systems used for installing tile and stone, visit Custom Building Products at www.custombuildingproducts.com and www.thesimplemat.com.