How Much Kitchen Backsplash Cost

Kitchen backsplashes not only provide an aesthetic appeal but also protect the walls from splashes and stains. When planning for a kitchen remodel or new construction, the backsplash is an important design consideration. The cost of a kitchen backsplash can vary significantly depending on the materials, size of the project, and labor involved. Here is an overview of the factors that impact the cost of a kitchen backsplash.


The material choice for the backsplash is one of the biggest factors in determining the overall cost. There is a wide range of backsplash materials to select from, including:

Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tile is one of the most popular choices for kitchen backsplashes. The cost of ceramic tile starts at $5 per square foot and goes up from there based on the type, size, texture, and quality of the tiles. Handmade or mosaic tiles tend to be on the higher end.

Stone Tile

Stone tiles like marble, granite, and slate have a luxurious look but come at a higher price point. Stone tile backsplashes start at around $50 per square foot installed. The variety and veining of natural stone means no two backsplashes look exactly the same.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel backsplashes have an industrial, modern appeal. Stainless steel backsplashes cost between $40-100 per square foot installed. This material is durable and easy to clean.

Glass Tile

Glass tile backsplashes have a shiny, elegant look and start at around $20 per square foot installed. The glass material is available in different colors, shapes, and textures. Installing glass tile can be tricky and may require a specialized installer.

Metal Tile

Metal tiles like copper, nickel, and tin add unique visual interest and texture. The cost is similar to glass tile, starting around $20 per square foot. Professional installation is recommended.


Wood adds warmth and natural texture. The cost of a wood backsplash is comparable to stone tile, starting around $50 per square foot installed. Maintenance is required to re-seal and protect the wood over time.

Size of the Backsplash

The overall size of the backsplash impacts the total cost. Measure the area (in square feet) needing backsplash coverage. This includes the wall area behind the countertops, stove, and sink. Multiply this by the cost per square foot of your material to estimate the materials needed.

Standard backsplash height is 4 inches from the countertop, but you can opt for a full height backsplash covering the entire wall. This extended height will increase the square footage and overall cost.

Labor Costs

In addition to material costs, professional installation of the backsplash adds to the total project budget. Labor costs for installation typically run $40-80 per hour. The complexity of the design, tile material, and layout will impact the time and labor costs.

Some materials like subway tile or DIY backsplash panels can be installed as a DIY project to save on the labor. However, specialized materials like natural stone, glass tile, or mosaics are best left to an experienced professional installer.

Additional Costs

Some additional costs that may apply to the backsplash installation:

  • Backsplash design: Custom or complex designs will increase the project costs.
  • Demolition and wall prep: Removing old backsplash and preparing the wall surface adds labor time.
  • Backsplash trim: Finishing the edges with trim and caulking adds to material costs.
  • Accent features: Adding special touches like a marble insert or decorative border can enhance the design but also the price.

Factors That Impact Cost

Here are some of the factors that commonly increase the overall cost of a kitchen backsplash project:

  • A larger backsplash area needing tile coverage
  • Full wall height instead of standard 4 inch height
  • More complex tile patterns or mosaic designs
  • Specialty tiles like handmade, natural stone, or glass tile
  • Professional installation, especially for tricky materials
  • Special finishing like trim, decorative accents, or accent banding
  • Removal and disposal of old backsplash prior to installation

Average Costs for Kitchen Backsplash Installation

Here are some typical price ranges for installing a new kitchen backsplash based on the most common materials:

  • Ceramic tile backsplash install: $400-800
  • Glass tile backsplash install:** $600-1000**
  • Natural stone tile backsplash install:** $800-2000**
  • Stainless steel backsplash install:** $600-1200**
  • DIY backsplash panels: $300-500

High-end designer tile backsplashes with specialty materials and detailing can run $2000-5000 for installation.

Tips for Budgeting a Kitchen Backsplash

  • Get several quotes and compare labor rates if hiring professional installers.
  • Select a tile material and design that fits within your budget.
  • Look for tile sales or discounts to save on materials.
  • Consider a smaller project area to reduce square footage and costs.
  • Install the backsplash yourself if comfortable doing DIY projects.
  • Add accents like an insert or border instead of using expensive tile for the entire wall.
  • Apply for financing or save up if the budget is tight to avoid cutting corners.

Investing in a quality backsplash improves the function and aesthetics of the kitchen. With some planning and savvy budgeting, you can achieve the stylish backsplash design you want at a price you can afford. Use the typical cost ranges here to estimate your budget and create a beautiful new backsplash for your kitchen.

Frequently Asked Questions About Kitchen Backsplash Cost

How much does it cost to install a kitchen backsplash?

The average cost to install a kitchen backsplash ranges from $400-800 for ceramic tile and $800-2000 for stone tile. High-end or specialty tile costs $2000-5000. The total depends on materials, project size, and labor rates.

What is the cheapest option for a kitchen backsplash?

The most budget-friendly options for kitchen backsplashes are ceramic tile, subway tile, backsplash panels, or painted drywall. These choices provide an attractive backsplash for less cost.

What tile is best for kitchen backsplash?

Ceramic and porcelain tile are best for backsplashes since they are water-resistant, easy to clean, durable, and come in many colors, shapes, and sizes. Glass tile, stone tile, or metal tile also make stylish backsplash options.

Should a backsplash match countertops?

The backsplash does not have to match the countertops exactly. Often the best designs use complementary colors and textures. It is recommended to bring material samples home to view together before finalizing your choices.

What is the most popular kitchen backsplash?

Subway tile is the most popular choice for kitchen backsplashes. The rectangular shape and classic design work well in both traditional and modern kitchens. White subway tiles are common, but you can also find them in colors, patterns, and different sizes.

Is backsplash necessary in the kitchen?

While not required, most kitchen designs incorporate a backsplash. The backsplash serves important functional purposes to protect the walls from splatters and spills while cooking. It also acts as a decorative focal point in the kitchen’s design.


The cost to install a new kitchen backsplash averages $400-1500 depending on the materials, labor, and the scope of the project. Ceramic, porcelain, or glass tile provide an attractive option at a more budget-friendly price point. Natural stone tile, metal, or high-end glass raise the cost but also elevate the overall design. Carefully measure your backsplash area, budget for experienced installers if needed, and select a material that fits both your practical needs and design vision. With some planning and creativity, you can achieve the ideal backsplash that puts the perfect finishing touch on your new kitchen.