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Popular Types of Kitchen Backsplashes

Popular Types of Kitchen Backsplashes

In the past, kitchen backsplashes were short and were only used to shield walls from cooking spills. Nowadays, backsplashes have become a significant element of kitchen style during a kitchen renovation. Despite being one of the final touches during a remodeling project, a kitchen is complete with a backsplash.

Check out this guide to learn about the many backsplash materials available, their benefits and drawbacks, and cost information.

Stone Tile Kitchen Backsplashes

Stone tiles of various types are frequently employed for kitchen backsplashes. Stone tile costs typically range from $8.50 to $17 per square foot. Still, it can be considerably higher, and the average labor expense is roughly $72 per hour. Increased costs may be incurred for the backsplash design and the stone grade, which are determined by surface quality, pitting, and color consistency.

Common Types of Stone Tiles and Unique Colors

  • Granite - comes in almost natural colors
  • Slate - usually found in blue, black, and rustic colors
  • Marble - in neutral colors; white, black, and gray
  • Soapstone is also available in neutrals; it is the least porous stone but is prone to scratches.
  • Travertine - softer and more absorbent than other stone tiles but has a high level of natural gloss.

Stone Tiles Pros

  • Comes in a variety of types with differing appearances, colors, and designs
  • High level of durability
  • Will add resale value to the home

Stone Tiles Cons

  • Must be resealed annually to avoid stains and discoloration
  • Softer stones are subject to scratching
  • Some stone is susceptible to heat damage
  • Difficult to repair

Ceramic Tile Kitchen Backsplashes

The most popular choice for a kitchen backsplash is ceramic tile. Ceramic tiles are available in various shapes, sizes, and colors. They can be installed in different patterns, making them highly versatile.

The average cost for professional ceramic tile installation is between $600 to $1,200. However, prices can go up to $3,000 for handmade designs. The tile cost varies based on size, thickness, and manufacturing process. The glossy glazed ceramic tile is the most common and least expensive, with a range of $1.25 to $10 per square foot. For the more costly options, handmade inlaid ceramic tile can cost between $50 to $100 per square foot.

Other types of glazes are available such as matte, crackle, hand-painted, metallic, large format, and mosaic.

Ceramic Tiles Pros

  • Many shapes, sizes, colors, and patterns to choose from
  • It can be a low cost
  • Simple to clean
  • Easy to replace

Ceramic Tiles Cons

  • Intricate finishes and designs can be costly
  • The extra tile should be kept on hand for future repairs
  • Cracks may form over time
  • Tiles and grout can stain
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Porcelain Tile Kitchen Backsplashes

Porcelain tiles are produced by compressing and heating clay dust at high temperatures. In contrast, ceramic tiles are made by firing wet clay with glaze. Porcelain tiles are usually unglazed, have limited design options, and have fewer varieties than ceramic tiles. However, they are more durable than ceramic tiles.

Porcelain tile may offer fewer options for customization than ceramic tile in terms of shape, size, color, and pattern. However, it can still provide the appearance of stone, wood, or glass for a lower cost than using those materials for a backsplash.

Generally, porcelain tile is pricier than ceramic tile, with prices starting at $7 per square foot. The installation cost is also higher, ranging from $10 to $12 per square foot. Although it has a higher initial cost, the lower maintenance fees can help offset the expenses.

Porcelain Tiles Pros

  • Long-lasting
  • It can look like a more expensive material
  • No sealing needed
  • Doesn't crack

Porcelain Tiles Cons

  • Less variety in shape, size, color, and pattern
  • More expensive than ceramic

Glass Tile Kitchen Backsplashes

You can use glass for a distinctive backsplash due to its wide range of colors, shapes, and patterns. Glass tiles typically cost $9 to $18 per square foot. For standard square or rectangular layouts, you can pay around $72 per hour for a skilled installer. However, more complex designs may result in higher labor costs.

Glass tiles come in various colors, patterns, and shape options. They also have different levels of reflectivity, such as glossy, frosted, matte, and iridescent. Iridescent is the latest type of finish that reflects all light colors and is ideal for rooms with natural sunlight.

Glass Tile Pros

  • Many shapes, sizes, colors, and patterns to choose from
  • Reflectivity can make the room feel larger and brighter
  • Easy to clean
  • Can add resale value

Glass Tile Cons

  • Tiles cannot be repaired; if damaged, they must be replaced
  • Finding matching replacement tiles can be difficult
  • Glass tiles can reflect sound
  • As tiles are heavy, walls may need reinforcement before installation

Wood Kitchen Backsplashes

Although not a common choice for a kitchen backsplash, wood options are available. They are generally less expensive than other choices but have some downsides. Laminated wood costs around $2 to $5 per square foot, reclaimed wood costs about $2 to $10, and beadboard with wood costs $7 to $20.

Suppose you want to use wood as a backsplash, and it's not laminated. In that case, you'll need to use a special sealant because wood isn't naturally waterproof. Painting and staining can give it the look you want, but it requires ongoing maintenance to keep its appearance.

Wood Backsplash Pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Versatile in appearance

Wood Backsplash Cons

  • High maintenance
  • Combustible
  • Prone to water damage and other appearance changes

Peel-and-Stick Tile Kitchen Backsplashes

The trend of DIY home d├ęcor includes peel-and-stick backsplash, a type of adhesive tile used for a temporary backsplash. Although some high-end options can last a couple of years, it is mainly made of vinyl but can also be found in materials like metal, glass, and stone. Although most peel-and-stick tiles can be cut with scissors, special tools may be required for specific materials.

Peel-and-stick tiles are easy to use and offer various colors, shapes, and styles to achieve any desired look. They are ideal for renters or homeowners who plan on staying in their homes for a short time as they are non-permanent.

Peel-and-stick tile costs between $6 and $25 per square foot. One of the main advantages is that it can be self-installed, which saves on external labor costs.

Peel-and-Stick Tile Pros

  • DIY installation
  • Inexpensive
  • Wide variety of looks to choose from
  • An excellent option for renters

Peel-and-Stick Tile Cons

  • Doesn't last that long
  • It can look less put together than traditional methods
  • Can peel or fall off after time in areas of high heat and moisture
  • Doesn't add value to the home

Wallpaper Kitchen Backsplashes

Wallpaper provides comparable advantages to peel-and-stick tile. It is available in various designs, easily installed by oneself, and is a cost-effective alternative.

You can buy wallpaper for a backsplash for a relatively low price of $25 to $50 per roll. Even with more high-end options that look like tile backsplash and cost $250 per roll, it can still be cost-effective once you factor in labor costs.

Adhesive wallpaper can be a simple solution for your kitchen backsplash, similar to peel-and-stick tile. Whether you choose traditional or adhesive wallpaper, applying a waterproof varnish to protect it is a good idea. This will keep your wallpaper looking good even with daily wear and tear and make cleaning it a breeze.

Wallpaper Pros

  • DIY installation
  • Inexpensive
  • Wide variety of looks to choose from

Wallpaper Cons

  • It can look less put together than traditional methods
  • Can peel or fall off after time in areas of high heat and moisture
  • Doesn't last very long
  • Doesn't add value to the home

Backsplash buying considerations to keep in mind:

1. Durability

Consider the durability of the material. The backsplash should withstand daily wear and tear, such as heat, moisture, and potential impact from cooking activities or accidental spills. Look for backsplash materials known for their durability and resistance to stains, scratches, and damage.

2. Maintenance

Evaluate the maintenance requirements of the material. Some backsplash materials, like stone or glass, may require periodic sealing or unique cleaning products. In contrast, others, like ceramic or porcelain tiles, are low-maintenance. Consider your lifestyle and the time and effort you are willing to dedicate to cleaning and maintaining the backsplash.

3. Style and Aesthetics

Choose a backsplash material that complements your kitchen's overall style and design. Consider the color, texture, and pattern of the material and how it will blend with your countertops, cabinets, and other elements in the kitchen. Look for a material that enhances the visual appeal of your space and creates a cohesive look.

4. Cost

Determine your budget for the backsplash project. Backsplash materials vary in price, so it's essential to consider the cost of materials, installation, and any additional supplies or labor required. Remember that some materials may require professional installation, adding to the overall cost.

5. Longevity

Assess the longevity and lifespan of the backsplash material. Some materials, such as natural stone or porcelain, are known for their durability and can last many years with proper care. Others, like wallpaper or certain types of wood, may have a shorter lifespan and may require replacement or refinishing sooner.

6. Personal Preference

Ultimately, consider your personal taste and preferences. Choose a backsplash material that aligns with your style, reflects your personality, and creates a space you love. Selecting a material you will enjoy for years to come is crucial.

Whether you prefer the timeless elegance of stone, the sleekness of glass, or the versatility of ceramic, the perfect backsplash is out there, waiting to transform your kitchen into a true culinary haven. So go ahead, explore the possibilities, and choose the backsplash that will protect your walls and elevate the heart of your home.

For seamless kitchen backsplash installation, contact Green Home Installations.

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