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Bathrooms - Tub Decks & Sink Splashes

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The tile on the tub splash is a perfect place to coordinate other tiles in the room. These tiles can coordinate with the tile on the floor, the shower, the walls or the sink splash. Whether your tub says, “Calgon, take me away” or is simple a place to take a bath, it’s usually a focal point of the bathroom, so why not make it special?

Considerations:

  • Before determining the tiles and design for the sink backsplash, measure the mirror height to make sure the mirror can be mounted above the tiles where you can still see your reflection in the mirror!
  • Take into consideration any windows that are behind the tub before planning your tile design.
  • Choosing to mix different tiles to create a pattern in encouraged, but be careful about mixing tiles with different thicknesses. Check with your tile designer or tile setter to see if your choices will work together for a smooth installation.
  • One of the first things to take into consideration when choosing a tile for a tub is the size. Larger tiles help make an area appear larger, but if you only have a few inches around the perimeter of the tub a large format tile will be too large. It is best to find the balance between the size of the tile and the size of the space being covered.
  • If using tile with a whirlpool tub an access panel is necessary to keep from having to tear off the front of the tub in the event the motor needs to be accessed for repair.
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Options:

  • Tile the top of the tub where the candles and soap also called the “tub deck”
  • Tile the front of the tub called the “tub front”
  • Tile the walls behind the tub called the “tub splash”
  • Finishing the tile – be sure to find out if the tile you select has a coordinating bullnose to finish off the edges of the last piece of tile.
  • Consider if your tile choice looks better with small or larger grout lines.
  • Using a sealer for your grout to help prevent mold and mildew issues

Decorative Design Options:

Tub splashes are not only decorative, but functional for protecting the walls from water splashing behind the tub. You only need a small amount of space tiled to protect the walls, but you have the option to be more decorative than what it necessary.

Decorative design options are:

  • Tiling higher than splash height around all three walls, but not wainscot or full height
  • Wainscot height tile on all three walls
  • Tiling regular height on two walls and tiling full height on an accent wall
  • Tub to ceiling height on all three walls
  • Tub to ceiling height on all three walls with a decorative picture frame
  • Tub to ceiling height on all three walls with a recessed niche built into the wall for soap and accessory storage
  • For a small and functional splash, use one tile either laid straight or on the diagonal and cap it off with a bullnose piece or decorative listello
  • Often, the tub front is made from wood, it is acceptable to have a wood front with a tile top and splash.