A backsplash refers to the tile panel that goes on top of the sink or the stove in the kitchen and protects the wall from water-splash damage. Backsplashes are almost exclusively made of tiles. Any tile material used for flooring can also be used to create a backsplash. Ceramic, Porcelain, glass, metal, and natural stones have something to offer as the material for a backsplash. The tiles also come in many different patterns and designs to make it the kitchen’s focal point.
Why do I need a backsplash?
1) The clue is in the name.
As the name suggests, it is necessary to protect your kitchen wall from water splashes. A backsplash can work as a ‘back grease’ or ‘back stain.’ Since tiles are inherently waterproof, grease stains are only a wipe away. In terms of its function, a backsplash is necessary for a kitchen.
2) It acts as an accent wall.
Although you don’t want your backsplash to catch too much attention, it is a part of the kitchen that stands out. This allows you to go for something unique that makes your kitchen more attractive.
3) The resale value
Although minor, a kitchen backsplash will increase the property value. More importantly, few buyers can resist the impact of a harmonious-looking kitchen. Make it dazzle by the right backsplash, and you’re golden.
How to Pick a Backsplash for Your Kitchen
As many things as they offer, there are a handful of essential things you need to consider before picking a backsplash for your kitchen.
1) Size and budget
Tile installation might cost you more than anticipated if you’re not careful. Remember, the material is not the only cost. To safely get a backsplash for your kitchen, you need to know where and how much of your kitchen wall you need to cover.
To know how much material you need, first, you need to decide how high you were planning for your backsplash to reach. Backsplashes can go as little as 4 inches above the sink countertop to the ceiling. The busier a cook you are, the higher the backsplash should reach.
After deciding on the height, measure the size and the width of the surface to be covered, and multiply the numbers by the square footage. If you’re buying the materials yourself, a good rule is always to buy 10 percent extra. This way, you’ll be able to fill the gaps and have spare tiles if one falls off or gets damaged.
2) Aesthetics or functionality?
The suitable material can differ depending on which matters to you the most. For example, natural stones look unique and glorious but are typically porous and less water-resistant.
3) Don’t go overboard with the charm
Since backsplashes can go a bit above and beyond, you don’t want all the attention. However beautiful, if you pick something like that, it will render your kitchen secondary. A backsplash must be an integral part of the kitchen and reinforces the overall look.
4) The countertop
Take the design and color of your countertop into consideration. A backsplash is an excellent opportunity to reinforce your countertop’s structure. For example, a more simplistic backsplash would be your choice if you have a heavily patterned countertop. Similarly, if your countertop is dark in color, a lighter backsplash will help balance the look and vice versa.
5) Backsplash should be the final decision
If you are building your house anew or doing a heavy remodel of your kitchen, it’s best to match the backsplash with the kitchen at the end of the construction. Have a rough image in your mind of how you want it to look, but leave the final decision until the end. When the paint job is done and the cabinets are chosen and installed, you have a clear mind, a narrower range of choices, and an easier decision.
6) Do your research
Take that extra time to check as many designs and options available. With so many patterns and shapes, it’s not hard to find something that will truly satisfy your expectations.
Different options for a backsplash
Here is a quick review of the available primary materials and what each has to offer to your kitchen:
1) Peel and stick tiles
This is the easiest and most DIYer-friendly option for a backsplash. Peel and stick backsplash tiles come in different designs. They also come with their adhesive, so you can install them yourself without too much effort if your wall is adhesive-friendly.
2) Ceramic and porcelain tiles
Porcelain and ceramic tiles are the most functional when it comes to backsplashes. They are the most popular types of tiles. Being the modern version of ceramic, Porcelain is the most complex and most durable of the two. But they both hold up their own when it comes down to design versatility, water resistance, ease of installation, and affordability.
3) Natural stone tiles
Natural stones offer a truly unique and often luxury look to your kitchen. With that in mind, stone tiles are far from maintenance-free and need regular attention. Stone tiles are also challenging to install. So, you need to factor in higher installation into your budget.
Glass is not the most popular option for flooring. That is because glass tiles go through faster and harder wear and tear, which is hard to maintain. Since a backslash is less exposed to wear and tear, glass regains its popularity. Despite the luxurious sight, glass is more expensive both in material and installation.
Metal backsplashes aren’t as standard as some of the other options available. Yet, they offer some unique features. Metal tiles take heat well and last a long time.
While choosing your material, you must know what you’re looking for. Are you a messy cook and need wall protection or just a better look? Either way, it’s essential to be aware of a few things to know what works for you.