Marble Backsplash Installation Guide

Note: All our custom backsplash designs on marble require expert installation. Prior to starting your installation, please ensure that the tiles meet your requirements and expectations. Actual Design & Décor declines all responsibility for problems that may arise when our installation instructions are not followed. This includes additional labor charges or other consequential losses. We cannot accept returns on any tiles that have been broken or installed. Following these easy steps will ensure proper installation of your custom backsplash design.

Backsplash Marble Design will Arrive Unassembled

Tile murals will be shipped unassembled with individual tiles stacked on top of each other. Each tile will have a number on the back of it (Ex: 1, 2, 3, etc.). We will include an easy to follow installation guide that will explain in what order the tiles should be installed.

STEP 1:
Using an orbital sander, go over all the areas where tile will be applied to smooth out any high spots and create a more tactile surface for applying mortar. Clean up any residual dust with a vacuum cleaner or tack cloth. Use a spirit level to draw straight lines delineating areas, where your marble backsplash will go.

STEP 2:
Mix Tile Adhesive following manufacturer’s instructions, combine water and mortar mix in a deep bucket. Fit mixer bar into electric drill and thoroughly mix until the mortar is lump-free and the consistency of peanut butter. Begin spreading mortar and applying marble tiles. Keep it leveled. As you go, use the spirit level to ensure a straight line. This is especially important in any areas that aren’t resting on the countertop, like behind the stove.

Tip: Your marble backsplash design is already sealed, there is no need to seal it before grouting. Please wait 24 hours to apply tile Grout to the backsplash design.

STEP 3:
Non-Sanded Grout should be used when installing tiles. We recommend using purified water instead of tap water, as the minerals in tap water may cause “efflorescence”, or white mineral deposits on the grout that can be difficult to remove. Stir the mixture gently, since vigorously mixing the grout may weaken it by adding air bubbles. Actual Design & Decor recommends applying the grout with your fingers to assure minimum damage to your custom gold leafed backsplash design. To do this, put on gloves and use your fingers to push the grout deeply into the gaps between the tiles, filling all areas. Be careful when using black or dark grout on natural stone. The grout may discolor the image. We don’t recommend cutting our tiles. If you must cut them please be aware that you may see some chipping in the image along the cut edge. It’s best to work in small batches, only mixing up as much grout as you can spread in 20 minutes. Stir until the mix is smooth and is the consistency of toothpaste. Before applying grout to the tile, allow it to “slake,” or rest, for five to 10 minutes (check manufacturer’s recommended time) so the chemicals can properly bond. Once you are finished applying the grout, wait about 30 minutes for the grout to begin to dry. Then start removing excess grout with clean, barely damp sponge, frequently rinsing and wringing it out in the sink. Very wet sponges can inadvertently add more water to the grout and weaken it. Be very careful not to scratch the gold leaf. Make sure to remove all excess grout in between and on top of the tiles. Once the grout has fully cured it will be very difficult to remove it. As you clean, look at the backsplash from all angles to check for gaps in the grout. Just fill any in with a dab of grout on your fingertip, and use the sponge to clean off any excess. Continue cleaning grout until there is no visible haze.

The most important thing to remember when grouting is to not pour the wet grout down any drain in your home. The grout will most likely set in the pipes and permanently seal them. Instead, let the excess grout dry in the bucket and toss the whole thing in the garbage.

STEP 4:
The grout usually cures in 24-48 hours, meaning it could be sealed in just 1-2 days. Check manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended cure time. Once the grout is dry, apply a Marble Tile Sealant to the backsplash design and grout using a soft cotton or microfiber cloth to seal the marble and bring out the unique characteristics of each tile. Remove any remaining drop cloths or tape. Enjoy the life-long beauty of your very own custom backsplash design! C

Caring For Tiles:

Cleaning: Water and soap with a soft cloth or sponge work well when cleaning your tile murals. Please don’t use any cleansers with harsh abrasives like Comet, Magic Eraser or Ajax.