It’s no secret that kitchens can be very messy areas of the home from time to time; with so many delicious concoctions, soups and sauces being splashed around in various pans, pots and blenders, it can be difficult to keep the walls spotless. Modern fitted kitchens commonly incorporate an easy-wipe ‘splashback’ which is designed specifically to create wall space that can be situated next to cooking stations. These tiles walls can be a life-saver, so older kitchens that are due a facelift could really benefit from this.
In this quick, step-by-step guide we’ll be looking at the best way to begin tiling a kitchen; so without further delay, grab your overalls and let’s get started!
A Few Things worth Noting
Cutting tiles to fit around small corners or rounded edges can be more complicated than it may seem, so removing obstacles from your walls such as under-cupboard pelmets can prove to save a lot of time and effort. Pelmets are easily removed by simply unscrewing them from the base of the cupboard.
Measure the thickness of the tiles you have and compensate for this space by removing the equivalent at the ‘wall end’ of the pelmet. Plug sockets and fittings should also be removed, so also be sure to isolate the socket before any fittings are removed and wires are exposed.
Measure the width of the splashback area; be sure to find and mark the centre as this is where we will begin tiling from; taking a spirit level, mark a straight vertical line through the centre of the splashback area and straight to the bottom.
Be sure to get a ‘notched’ trowel before you begin, this will allow you to notch the adhesive quickly and properly.
Now the preliminary steps are taken care of, we can start to apply our adhesive; you needn’t use too much at once, applying it to a small area at a time allows you to take your time with each section. Be sure to apply the adhesive away from the edges of the splashback area; this will prevent you from having to use tile cuts (smaller pieces which have had to be cut to fit the small area that remains untiled). Once your area of adhesive is applied, you can begin to notch it (with the notched side of your trowel and place tile spacers at the base of the wall, keeping the tiles a suitable space from the bottom (which can be filled with sealant later).
When tiling a kitchen, each of the tiles applied to the wall must be spaced out with a tile spaced placed in the cross section located at the meeting point of 4 tiles. Tiling a kitchen requires lots of time and attention, you may find it beneficial to tackle one section at a time and leave each to set before returning to take on the next section.
Once the base has settled you can begin to move upward and outward, under cupboards and meeting the corners of the wall.
Finishing the Job
It is extremely likely that you will need to use cuts when tiling a kitchen, so be sure to accurately measure the space that remains to be filled as you begin to approach the end of the wall. Account for the space needed for filler (typically the width of the limbs on your tile spacer) on either side of the tile and then deduct this from the overall width or height of the tile.
So there we are; some preparation tips to ready you for the mammoth task that is tiling a kitchen!