How to Tile a Kitchen Splashback

kitchen splashback tile

As the head of product purchasing here at Ross’s Discount Home Centre, one of the most frequently asked questions I receive is, “how can I update my kitchen on a small budget?” Personally, I believe there to be no bigger ‘bang for your buck’ than a simple and affordable kitchen splashback upgrade. While there are various kitchen splashback options available, only one is simple and affordable, and that’s tiles.

Stay away from glass splashbacks, forgo mirrored splashbacks, and definitely veto stone splashbacks. For a kitchen transformation that is cheap, easy to do, and will make a massive impact on the overall look of a kitchen, nothing beats a tiled splashback.

Today, I will show you just how easy a tiled kitchen splashback is to do so you can consider possibly taking on such a project yourself! And I’ll also show you how affordable it can be by recommending a few products from our range.

Removing Existing Splashback

If you are renovating, which I assume you are, you must first remove your existing splashback. You can be lazy and tile over it, but believe me, you will be disappointed in the finish. It is well worth the effort to remove the existing splashback, reinstall the new plasterboard if required and start with a clear flat surface.

Tiling onto new plasterboard

  1. The first step of tiling a kitchen splashback is to prep the surface. Make sure your plasterboard is free of any lumps or bumps that may interfere with your tiling. Add protective sheets over your benchtops to protect them from any tile adhesive and grout.
  2. Make sure you have something to support the tiles – a benchtop is ideal. But if you’re tiling between two cupboards and want to continue a clean line of tiles, temporarily attach a block of wood in line with the benchtop to support the tiles that will sit between the cupboards.
  3. Prepare your tile adhesive (mastic). I recommend Mastik Tile Adhesive or Uni-Grip Tile Adhesive. If it’s a powder adhesive like Mastik, you want to mix it until it’s of toothpaste consistency.
  4. Next, select a starting point above a benchtop and use a 6 or 8mm notch trowel to carefully apply a line of mastic to cover the area on one row of tiles. Start at the bottom and push the trowel up to apply the mastic. If you are laying mosaic tiles, use a 6mm notch trowel. Otherwise use an 8mm notch trowel.
  5. Lay down the first row of tiles to form the foundation for the following rows. Use spaces to ensure the tiles are lined up and evenly spaced. Check they are level using a spirit level.
  6. At the end of the row, you will likely need to cut your tiles for a perfect fit. To do this, place the tile upside down on the tile cutter and run the cutting blade along the time, applying pressure to break it.
  7. Lay the cut tile with the cut end butting into the corner or architraves.
  8. Continue Steps 5 through eight till you have completed laying each row of tiles, leaving the spacers in place for at least 12 hours.
  9. After 12 hours, the mastic is set, and the spacers can be removed.
Laying Splashback Tiles
Start laying tiles above the benchtop.
Laying Second Row of Tiles
Laying the second row of tiles in a running bond pattern
Laying First Row of Tiles
Laying the first row of tiles
Tiling Kitchen Splashback
Kitchen splashback tiling is almost complete
End of Tiles with Cuts butted to corner wall
End of Tiles with Cuts butted to corner wall

Grouting Splashback Tiles

With the tiles lay and the adhesive set, the tiles are now ready to be grouted. For grout, I recommend Morgan Regular Grout. It’s available in many colours and is suitable for 3-6mm tile joints. Prepare your grout as per the manufacturer’s instructions, and then come back here to continue the process.

  1. Using a rubber trowel, apply the grout to the tiles, massaging it into the joints at a 45-degree circular motion. Ensure all joints are full and remove any excess grout along the way.
  2. Wait around 30 minutes for the grout to set, then use a clean sponge to clean and wipe away any excess grout.

Splashback Tile Recommendations

There are literally thousands of suitable tile choices for splashbacks: some big, some small, some expensive, and some incredibly cheap; it really just depends on your budget.

For those looking for an affordable tile that offers excellent value for money, you simply cannot look past subway tiles, and we have a huge selection in our range, starting at a low $30.00 per square meter for our 10×30 subway. We also have a great range of feature tiles at the affordable price of $45 per square metre, which includes the Carina Black, Esty Black, Esty Brown, Isla Navy, Luxello Black, Orleans Black, Susan Black, and Susan Navy tiles.

For something even more budget-friendly, we have a massive mosaic tile clearance, where all mosaics are a crazy $10 per sheet. If you’re still undecided about your splashback tile, our article on Kitchen Splashback Trends should help.


If you’re looking for an affordable way to give your kitchen a mini-makeover, upgrading your kitchen splashback to a tiled splashback is the best option. It’s affordable and incredibly easy to do, so much so you can do it yourself!

Tiling a kitchen splashback is simple, providing you follow these steps: start by preparing the surface so it is ready for tiling, and make sure your tiles have a benchtop to support them. Get your tile adhesive ready and apply it to the wall, one row at a time, starting at the bottom. Place the tiles on the adhesive and use spacers to ensure they are spaced out evenly. Continue this process row by row until the splashback is completely tiled. After 12 hours, the spacers can be removed, and grout can be applied. Apply the grout liberally, whipping off any excess grout as you go. Let the grout sit for 30 minutes before cleaning it to complete your tile installation.

If you’re looking for affordable splashback tiles in Perth, look nowhere else by Ross’s Discount Home Centre. We have an enormous range of tiles suitable for splashbacks, with subway tiles starting at $30 per square meter and feature tiles at just $45 per square metre. We also have a massive mosaic clearance where you can score mosaic sheets at just $10 each!

Visit Ross’s Discount Home Centre for all your kitchen splashback tile needs.

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