The right backsplash can provide the perfect finishing touch to any kitchen, and can even completely change the look of your kitchen. But how much does backsplash installation cost?
Today we’ll guide you through backsplash installation costs and the things you need to consider when deciding on a backsplash for your kitchen.
How much does it cost to install a backsplash?
Obviously, this depends on a number of factors, but the average cost to install a kitchen tile backsplash is around $1,000. Depending on a number of factors, your backsplash installation cost could be as low as $450 or over $1,500. The factors that determine the cost include:
- Material and finish of tile
- Area to be covered
- The complexity of the pattern e.g. angles, fixtures to work around, hard-to-reach areas
- The level of skill needed (whether you can do it yourself or someone who has mastered tiling)
How much does it cost to install a backsplash per square foot?
Kitchen tile backsplash installation cost per square foot tends to be somewhere around $10 and $40, although it does depend on the type of material you choose for your backsplash. Here are some examples of tile materials you could choose from and their cost per square foot.
Ceramic tile usually costs $2 per square foot with an installation cost of $25 per square foot, so it’s the most inexpensive material choice.
Ceramic is particularly easy to cut so it is good for spaces with awkward corners or numerous wall fixtures. It is also durable and low maintenance but it is unwise to attempt installation of this material yourself.
Stone tile, typically marble or granite, costs $7 to $10 per square foot with an installation cost of $30 per square foot.
Glass tiles come in at anywhere between $7 and $30 per square foot, with the cost to install glass tile backsplash at $32 per square foot.
Glass tile patterns come pre-assembled and with so many varieties you are sure to find one that matches the style of your kitchen.
A stainless-steel backsplash is priced at $20 per square foot with an installation cost of $36 per square foot.
Stainless steel is easy to clean and works well with many different styles. You should be aware, though, that it may lose its sleek appearance over time.
What are the labor costs involved with installing a kitchen backsplash?
The average labor cost to install backsplash is generally $40 to $60 per hour, with peel-and-stick installations at the lower end.
If you want a more complex backsplash design, such as mosaic or herringbone, your contractor is likely to quote you a higher rate. More elaborate patterns require more time and effort, especially if tile cuts have to be frequently made. You may find that a contractor will charge you up to $100 per hour for this type of design, meaning that you could be paying $500 per day in labor costs alone, depending on the scope of the project.
What are the pros and cons of installing a kitchen backsplash?
- Adds a focal point to the kitchen, with color, pattern, and/or texture
- can change the look of your kitchen quickly
- prevents scratches, dents, and water damage to the wall itself
- helps to reduce unsightly stains
- easier to keep clean than paint or wallpaper – simply wipe away splatters
- some materials, such as natural stone and wood, require a certain level of maintenance to keep them looking as good as they should – for example, natural stone must be sealed or it will stain
- difficult to change compared to painted or wallpapered walls
- difficult to install yourself – you’ll likely need to pay for labor
What are the different styles, patterns, and shapes for a kitchen backsplash?
There is a wide range of different styles, patterns, and shapes for a kitchen backsplash. Some of the most popular options are:
Subway tile – this is a traditional pattern made from materials including, but not limited to, ceramic, natural stone, and glass. This is a low maintenance style with low labor costs; however, it can be hard to remove.
Mosaic tile – this is the perfect option if you want to create a custom pattern for your kitchen backsplash. Examples include chevron, penny round, hexagon, and herringbone, in similar materials to subway style. The main downside to this style is the complexity leads to higher labor costs.
Penny tile – this style can provide your kitchen with a classic yet bold look in glass, porcelain, ceramic, or marble tiles. This pattern could take a long time to install, meaning higher costs, unless you find them as a sheet rather than individual tiles.
How does pricing work for installing a backsplash?
There are 4 main factors that will affect the final backsplash installation cost:
As discussed above, the price range fluctuates greatly depending on the type of material you opt for. For instance, a polished marble tile backsplash will come at a much higher cost than a ceramic tile backsplash, the most basic option.
High-end materials include marble, metal, stainless steel, and natural stone and will fall into a higher price range.
Mid-range materials include glass, some stone, and peel-and-stick vinyl.
Low-end materials include ceramic tile, porcelain tile, and wood paneling known as beadboard.
2. Scope of Project
The cost to install a kitchen backsplash will obviously vary depending on the size of the area that needs to be covered. If you simply want a backsplash in the area between the base cabinets and the top cabinets, this will have lower labor costs than if you want the entire exposed part of the wall covered.
3. Style or Pattern Complexity
As you can imagine, installing peel-and-stick tile is a lot easier, and quicker, than creating an elaborate custom design for a kitchen backsplash, and so labor costs will be much lower.
4. Whether an Existing Backsplash Needs to Be Removed
If you need to have an existing backsplash removed, you will need to think about the labor cost of this, including preparing the wall for the new tile. If removal of the old backsplash has caused damage to the wall, this will have to be repaired before any installation can be done.
How long does it take to install a backsplash?
The length of time it will take to install a backsplash once again depends on the area that is to be covered and the complexity of the design. However, smaller, basic tiling jobs will typically take 2 days to be completed.
One full day is spent prepping the wall and actually installing the tile, and another half day will be spent completing the job by grouting and cleaning the tile, as well as sealing it should needs be.
If you decide to complete the job yourself, it may take you an extra day as you will have to take more time to ensure you get it right.
How much does it cost to install a subway tile backsplash?
The cost of subway tile ranges from $0.15 per square foot up to $15 per square foot depending on the material and pattern you choose. Herringbone subway tile is very popular at the moment with its V-shaped pattern. Because of the 45˚ or 90˚ angles, the herringbone pattern will be more expensive in labor costs than the more classic, horizontal subway tile. Therefore, it is important to consider whether you want to prioritize aesthetic over cost.
How can I save money on installing a kitchen backsplash?
The best place to save money when installing a kitchen backsplash is to choose lower-cost materials, like ceramic or porcelain. You will still be able to give your kitchen a new look, without breaking the bank.
If you are willing to spend a little more for a more luxurious look but don’t want to pay for the high-end materials, peel-and-stick tile sheets are a great compromise. The tiles themselves tend to be in the mid-range prices with better quality materials, but the easy installation process will cut the labor costs down considerably.
Finally, make sure that you take the time to gather quotes from a few different contractors so that you can be sure that you are getting the best price for your kitchen backsplash installation.
Closing Thoughts: Is it worth installing a kitchen backsplash?
Installing a kitchen backsplash adds a focal point that can totally change the look of your kitchen, pulling in color, adding texture, and giving your kitchen that personality it was missing.
Better still, it will protect the walls from food stains. If you’ve ever had to clean food off of a painted wall where the backsplash didn’t reach, you’ll know that it’s almost impossible, even if the paint is washable. If there’s a chance food may get on the wall, make sure you get a backsplash and that it reaches that area. If you don’t, you’ll regret it later!
If you are looking to save money on your entire kitchen renovation, Skipp is here to help. With our state-of-the-art technology, we can save you up to 40% on your remodeling project in just 4 simple steps. We will give you your perfect kitchen by providing you with access to top designers who will tailor your kitchen to your personal style and budget. Don’t just add a beautiful backsplash to your out-of-date, tired kitchen, renovate your entire kitchen with Skipp to get your dream kitchen at a fraction of what you thought it would cost you!