Select the Right Backsplash Height
Choosing the ideal height for your backsplash is an important first step. The standard backsplash height is 4 inches above the countertop, but you can adjust this based on your design preferences and needs. For a more seamless, built-in look, you may want to extend the backsplash to 18-24 inches high. Think about sightlines, functionality, and overall style when deciding on backsplash height.
Choose the Finish Material
The material you use to finish or “end” the backsplash will depend on the backsplash design. Common options include:
- Bullnose Tile: A rounded, finished edge tile that neatly caps off a tiled backsplash. Offered in many tile materials like ceramic, porcelain, or stone.
- Metal Strips: Brass, copper, or aluminum end caps add a decorative detail. Work well with both tile and glass sheet backsplashes.
- Edge Molding: Plastic or wood trim can conceal edges and create a clean finish. Ideal for use with glass tile or mosaic sheets.
- ** beadboard:** A wood paneling trim adds a cottage or farmhouse vibe. Requires precise cuts for a tailored look.
Cut Edge Tiles for a Built-In Look
For tile backsplashes, choosing bullnose tiles is the easiest option. But for a seamless custom appearance, you can cut and finish the edge tiles yourself. Use a wet saw to cut L-shaped edge tiles that tuck behind the countertop.
This gives the backsplash a polished, integral look since tile edges won’t be visible. Use tile spacers when installing to maintain even grout lines.
Install End Caps or Molding
For backsplashes made from glass, metal, or other sheet materials, trim pieces are ideal for finishing the edges. Cut metal strips or molding to fit the backsplash dimensions. Affix trim using silicone adhesive or small finish nails.
Ensure trim pieces overlap edges by at least 1/4 inch. Keep the lines straight, corners neatly mitered, and edges free of adhesive residue.
Apply Countertop Sealant
Once the backsplash installation is complete, seal the seam where the backsplash meets the countertop using a flexible silicone caulk. Smooth the bead with a dampened finger or caulk tool.
Choose a sealant color that matches the grout for the most invisible finish. Allow the sealant to fully cure before using the area.
Finish with Floating Shelves or Decor
Add the final accent details to complete your new backsplash. Floating shelves mounted above the backsplash provide both function and style. Wall decor items like art, mirrors, or floating spice racks can creatively conceal the top backsplash line.
Keep accessories minimal for a streamlined look. Clean the backsplash well and seal grout once fully cured. Enjoy your fresh, professionally-finished kitchen backsplash!
Common Backsplash Ending Mistakes to Avoid
When finishing a backsplash, a few common errors can detract from the final look:
- Uneven or misaligned end caps
- Gaps, overhangs, or corners that don’t neatly meet
- Using sealant that doesn’t match the grout color
- Failing to cut edge tiles for an integrated appearance
- Skipping backsplash sealing and allowing moisture damage
Take precise measurements, double check alignments, and take the time to neatly finish edges for flawless backsplash termination.
FAQs About Ending Kitchen Backsplashes
What is the standard height to end a backsplash?
The typical backsplash height is 4 inches above the countertop. But you can customizeheights from as little as 2 inches to as high as 2 feet or more. Standard stove backsplash heights are 18-24 inches.
What is the best way to end glass tile backsplash?
Use plastic trim molding, metal strips, or wood beadboard cut to size to cap and finish the edges of glass tile backsplashes. These materials conceal rough edges and give the backsplash a neat, complete look.
How do you finish the top edge of a tile backsplash?
Bullnose edge tiles that curve slightly over the corner create the most seamless finish for a tiled backsplash top edge. You can also end the tile with a metal or tile trim piece.
Can you end a backsplash without bullnose tile?
Yes, bullnose tiles are not required. You can terminate a backsplash with molding, metal strips, or use caulk/sealant to blend the edge into the wall. Cutting L-shaped tiles that tuck behind is another option.
Should you caulk above a backsplash?
Caulking above the backsplash where it meets the wall finishes the edge nicely. Use a silicone sealant in a matching color to create a near-invisible top edge that seals and waterproofs.
Ending a Backsplash Beautifully
Terminating a kitchen backsplash takes precision, patience, and the right materials to get a polished look. But with the proper planning and care taken on the details, you can achieve a professional, built-in appearance that pulls your whole kitchen design together.
Use cut bullnose tiles, trim pieces, caulk, and other accessories to artfully conceal edges and give your backsplash a seamless finish. Taking the time to properly end your backsplash will elevate your kitchen’s style for years to come.