How to Tile a Backsplash

Watch our step-by-step guide to learn how to tile a backsplash.

Add color and pattern to your kitchen with a tile backsplash. Follow these simple steps to complete this project in a weekend. You'll need mosaic tiles, a box cutter, mastic or thinset mortar, a notched trowel, spacers and the tile cutter or tile nipper. Dry fit your tiles by laying them out on a flat surface. If your tile is multicolored, make sure light colors do not touch. This will save you time as you put tiles on the wall. If you only need to use part of a sheet, use a box cutter to cut through the mesh backing starting from the bottom of the wall and working your way up. Apply a layer of mastic or thinset mortar spreading evenly. Hold the edge of the notched trowel at a 45-degree angle to the wall dragging it to make ridges in the thinset. This help the tiles stick securely to the wall. Working small sections so your mastic or thinset mortar doesn't get too dry before you can apply the tile. Position and press the tile sheet to the wall, working your way up from the counter. Apply firm and even pressure with your hands to ensure a solid bond. Use plastic spacers between the tile sheets and the countertop to keep the spacing even as you press adjacent tile sheets into place. Continue placing tile on the wall based on the dry fit pattern. Use a tile cutter to make clean, straight cuts for custom fit pieces around the window or outlet boxes. Continue until the backsplash is covered. After your mortar has cured for the recommended time, you're ready for grout.