Having the right tools for the job will set you up for success. Like any project, your preparation is crucial before installation. Learn how to properly prep and install your tiles below to have a better understanding of the installation process:
First, you need to measure and decide how you would like to layout your backsplash. Decide if you want your tiles on a forty-five-degree angle or straight across. Wipe down your wall with a wet sponge and remove all dust and dirt. If there is prior adhesive, you may need to sand to get your wall to an even coat. Remove all outlet covers as well as light switch covers. You will want to loosen your outlets as well, so they can sit on top of your tiles you are installing. Use your notched trowel and spread out your tile adhesive. Next, take your level to make sure your tiles are level. You may also want to pencil in all the spots you are tiling, so your adhesive is not spread in access areas. Spread your adhesive in the regions that you can tackle in thirty-minute increments. Do not put adhesive over the whole wall immediately. Some wall tiles will come with built-in spacers, but if not, make sure to have your spacers ready.
By now, you should know how you want your design to look. If you are doing a brick layout or a herringbone, measure your tiles and make your cuts using a tile cutter. Start from the bottom up and use your spacers to keep the tiles even and from sliding. You can now use your grout float as well to press the tiles and make sure that they are evenly spaced from the wall. For your outlets or cuts that may need an “L” cut, use a pencil or washable marker and draw out your cuts. Take your tiles to your wet saw and make the appropriate cuts. Whenever making any cuts, remember to put on your safety glasses and be extremely careful. The wet saw is not forgiving and can severely hurt you. Remember, loose particles can also fly into your eyes even without power tools when cutting. Continue installing your tiles and making cuts as needed. Build the pattern of your tiles as you go and do not try to jump ahead. Use your rag or sponge to remove any access glue that may have come through the grout lines. Allow tiles to set depending on the time length your tile adhesive suggests.
Cut your tiles slowly and carefully. Try to be meticulous on your cuts and sand and rough edges. The time you invest in the project can show in the end-product. Check out Expert Advice on How to Install Backsplash | Part 3 to find out the final stage of grouting your tiles.