How to install a simple subway tile kitchen backsplash. Depending on the tile that is to be installed, and where it will be installed, it is sometimes appropriate to use mastic as an adhesive for the tile. When installing tile in a wet area such as a shower stall, mastic is not to be used, instead use a thinset mortar adhesive in areas that will be exposed to water. When using mastic to install subway tiles, ledger boards or bracing of the tile to prevent them from sliding down, will more than likely not be required. Mastic usually will hold a tile in place, unless the tile is very heavy. Mastic is a premixed adhesive that is sold in a bucket and is not thinset, and is not to be used in wet areas. A kitchen backsplash such as the one in this video is an instant where mastic is suitable. Use the correct size trowel to spread your mastic, the mastic bucket will have a description and a guide to help in the selection of the trowel for you tile. Once you have started to install your tile, always check to confirm that the coverage of adhesive on the back of the tile is adequate. Subway tiles more often than not will have automatic spacers on them; this will make it possible to just place a tile on to the next tile without the use of any other spaces. This is not always the case so check your tile before starting the installation. Once the tile is installed allow the mastic to set the appropriate amount of time before grouting.
All tile installed by Sal DiBlasi, Elite-tile Company, in the Boston North Shore area. This video contains affiliate links, which means I will receive a small commission if you click on the product link.
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National Tile Contractors Association