Installing a hexagon tile backsplash can add a unique, eye-catching accent to your kitchen. With their six-sided geometric shape, hexagon tiles create a honeycomb pattern that’s bolder and more artistic than traditional square tile. Installing them on your backsplash is a do-it-yourself project that can make a big impact with just a small amount of tile. Follow this step-by-step guide to learn how to install a hexagon tile backsplash in your kitchen.
Gather Your Materials
- Hexagon-shaped tiles – Choose porcelain, ceramic, glass, or stone tiles. Make sure they are rated for walls/backsplashes.
- Tile adhesive – Choose an appropriate adhesive for your tile type. Many thin hexagon tiles require a medium-bed mortar which is thicker.
- Grout – Pick a grout color that complements your tile. Unsanded grout is best for small tile with thin grout lines.
- Trowel – Use a notched trowel suitable for your tile size. Bigger tiles require deeper notches.
- Spacers – Small crosses keep tile spaced evenly. Some tiles have spacer tabs built-in.
- Tile cutter – A snap cutter is ideal for straight cuts. Use nippers for small irregular cuts.
- Grout float – A grout float helps press grout evenly into joints.
- Grout sealer – Sealing the grout prevents staining and damage.
- Silicone caulk – Needed to seal between tile and walls. Match grout color.
Prepare Your Backsplash Area
- Remove existing backsplash – Take down old tile, drywall, or anything currently on the backsplash area.
- Clean the area – Use a degreaser to remove any oils or residues from the wall area so the adhesive sticks.
- Make any repairs – Fix any holes, cracks, uneven areas so walls are smooth.
- Paint the walls – Paint the backsplash area with primer and latex paint. Avoid glossy paint.
Plan Your Tile Layout
- Measure area – Measure the height and length of your backsplash area.
- Determine tile layout – Hexagon tiles can be installed in straight vertical rows or a diagonal staggered bricklike pattern.
- Dry lay tiles – Place tiles on the countertop to test your pattern before installing.
- Cut border tiles – Measure and cut partial tiles to fit against walls and allow for your grout line width.
Apply Adhesive and Set Tiles
- Apply adhesive – Use a notched trowel to spread a layer of tile adhesive on the wall area, just enough for a few tiles.
- Place first tile – Set the first full tile against your focal point or edge as a guide. Use spacers.
- Set additional tiles – Continue placing tiles, working outward from your focal tile and maintaining even spacing.
- Press tiles – Use a rubber grout float to apply pressure and adhere the tile firmly in the adhesive.
- Check level lines – As you go, use levels to check your tile lines are straight. Adjust as needed.
- Cut and place borders – Measure, cut, and place your border and filler tiles last using tile nippers.
Apply Grout and Finish
- Let adhesive cure – Allow tile adhesive to cure fully, usually 24-48 hours.
- Grout tile joints – Apply grout along the joints, using a grout float to press in evenly. Remove excess grout.
- Clean tiles – Use a damp sponge to wipe diagonal across tiles and clean grout haze. Rinse sponge frequently.
- Seal grout – Once dry, apply grout sealer to protect from moisture and stains.
- Caulk edges – Run a bead of silicone caulk along top and side edges between tile and wall.
- Clean surface – Remove any remaining haze or residues with a soft cloth.
- Enjoy your new backsplash!
Hexagon tile backsplashes make a gorgeously modern statement in any kitchen. With the right materials and careful tile laying, you can install your own hexagon backsplash in a weekend. Always thoroughly plan the layout and take care to keep tile lines level. The hexagon shape can magnify any unevenness. Use quality grout and sealers to protect your new backsplash. With proper care, it will provide endless visual delight.
Frequently Asked Questions About Installing a Hexagon Tile Backsplash
What type of tile works best for hexagon backsplash?
Porcelain, ceramic, glass, and stone tiles are all suitable for backsplashes if they are rated for walls. Porcelain is an extremely durable option. Mosaics made up of small hexagon tiles are also popular.
How are hexagon tiles different than square tile?
The unique six-sided shape of hexagons creates a honeycomb pattern when installed. They allow for fun new layout options beyond basic grid designs. Their shape can also exaggerate uneven grout lines if not installed carefully.
What tools do I need for a hexagon backsplash?
You’ll need basic tiling tools – tile cutter, spacers, trowels, grout float, sponges, buckets. Tile nippers are also useful for small intricate cuts. Levels help keep tiles even. Have grout and caulk in coordinating colors.
How do I cut hexagon tiles?
A snap cutter is great for straight cuts on ceramic or porcelain tiles. Mark and score the tile, then snap downward evenly. Use tile nippers for small freeform cuts needed to fit around outlets, pipes, etc.
Should my hexagon backsplash go to the ceiling?
Full height backsplashes are trendy, but not essential. Typically backsplashes go from countertop to underside of wall cabinets. Extending to the ceiling makes more grout lines to keep clean. Consider your kitchen’s needs.
How close together should hexagons be?
Follow the manufacturer’s recommended grout joint size, usually 1/16” to 1/8”. Use tile spacers when setting tiles to achieve consistent spacing. Grout lines should be narrow to maximize the hexagon shape.
What grout color looks best with hexagon tiles?
White and light gray grout works with almost any color hex tile. Matching grout to a color in the tile can look seamless. Contrasting grout provides definition. Matte grout finishes avoid glare.
Installing a hexagon tile backsplash can take your kitchen design up a notch. With the right preparation and materials, this is an intermediate DIY tiling project suitable for a weekend renovation. Focus on proper planning to ensure your decorative hexagons end up straight and evenly spaced. The hexagon shape multiplies any imperfections. With care and patience, you can install an eye-catching backsplash that steals attention. A geometric hex tile backsplash injects artistic flair that sets your kitchen apart.