We are thinking of installing ceramic tiles on the wall between the
integral backsplash and the underside of the wall cabinets when we redo
our kitchen. The wall is done with regular sheetrock (not greenboard).
Is this a good base for ceramic tiles, or should we rip that section out
and install tile backer board?
Above the backsplash it won't get enough water to really matter in all
likelihood, but a little extra can't hurt. If it weren't a real pita to
get to and you're doing a major remodel, I'd probably go to the trouble.
If it's just sticking some tile on the wall as a "dress-up" project,
otoh, I'd probably just slap 'em up there...
Depends how sloppy a cook you are. Near stove and sink, I'd want backer
board or at least greenboard. 4 feet away where it never gets wet or steamy,
vanilla sheetrock is probably fine.
But having said that- if you are replacing cabinets and counter as part of
the rehab, consider not doing normal 4" backsplash, and just having a
field-applied matching material to cover upper cabinet to counter wall
surface. You have to keep the lower joint well sealed, but a smooth panel is
easier to keep clean than multiple grout cracks.
One of the best ideas I have ever had (IMO) came from wanting to cover
up our ugly, worn metal tiles behind cooktop and not have to tear out
the wall. We glued a plain laminate over the metal tile, then got
textured glass, smoothe side out, over the lam. Any color can be used,
the glass is tempered, and it is a cinch to clean. Spatters don't show
because of the texture (and I don't look :o) No way am I ever going to
clean spaghetti sauce from grout :o) Got grout in two baths - that is
enough for me. The whole area cost us about $80, and when I tire of it,
all that holds up the glass is silicone caulk all way around.
If you want to be sure, you could coat the wallboard with redgard or
I have lived in three houses where the shower/tub walls were ceramic tile
over "regular" wall board.
It all three homes there were some minor failures at the edges where tile
meets "no tile" but nothing that a little plaster of Paris and some "lath"
You kitchen is just no problem compared to a shower/tub. MAYBE after 8
years or so you might find a "softness" at the edge of the tiled area but
you can either fix it or rip out the tile because you are tired of it.
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