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Install a tile backsplash

RentalsBuilding Material

Nothing does a better or more stylish job of protecting the wall behind a kitchen counter than a tile backsplash. The hard surface makes it easy to clean and maintain the space between wall-hung cabinets and the countertop, which is prone to splashes of food or sauce during food preparation. A wide selection of tile colors, sizes and designs are available, allowing you to choose anything from a plain, no-nonsense design to a colorful focal point.

To install a 10-foot-long, 2-foot-high ceramic tile backsplash a tile contractor will charge $333, which includes the material and labor. You can buy the materials and do it yourself for $175 and save 48 percent. An alternative to using traditional mortar or mastic is Bondera, a tile adhesive on a roll to set the tiles.

While you'll see plenty of tiles at home centers, you'll find a larger and more diverse selection at a tile retailer, where you can rent or borrow some of the installation tools, including a tile cutter and nippers, a rubber float and trowel.

To help you visualize the effect in the room, buy sample tiles or use colored paper cut to the size of tile you plan to use. But first work on paper or with a design tool to create the pattern using a measured drawing of the area to be tiled.

To find more DIY project costs and to post comments and questions, visit and on smartphones.

Pro Cost -- DIY Cost -- Pro time -- DIY Time -- DIY Savings -- Percent Saved

$333 -- $175 -- 4.2 -- 8.5 -- $158 -- 48 Percent

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