Step 8: Clean and caulk

Clean and caulk
Photo by: Shaffer Smith Photography
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• After grouting the entire backsplash, clean the surface with a soft sponge and clear water, rinsing the sponge often. Wipe diagonally to the grout lines so as not to pull any grout from the joints.
• Wait 30 to 45 minutes for the grout to set and for a hazy film to appear on the tiles, then buff off the haze with a clean, dry cloth until the tiles shine.
• Squeeze a thin bead of tub-and-tile caulk, the same color as the grout, into the joint at the very bottom of the backsplash, in the corners, and between the tiles and the cabinets. Smooth with a wet finger.
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    Tools List

    • two-foot level
      2-foot level
    • 16-foot tape measure
      Tape measure
    • rubber float
      Rubber grout float
    • tile nippers
      Tile nippers
    • 3/16-inch v-notched trowel
      3/16-inch V-notched trowel
    • caulk gun
      Caulking gun with tub-and-tile caulk
    • bucket with sponge
      Bucket and sponge
    • tile cutter
      Score-and-snap tile cutter
    • wet saw
      Optional: Motorized wetsaw,
      rents for about $45 to $70 a day, plus blade rental, is invaluable for notches and other complex cuts

    Shopping List

    1. DECORATIVE TILE

    2. LISTELLO TILE

    border



    3. CERAMIC FIELD TILE

    4. BULLNOSE TILE

    5. UNSANDED TILE GROUT

    6. ACYLIC TILE MASTIC

    1 gallon for every 50 to 60 square feet



    7. CLEAN CLOTH

    8. 80-GRIT SANDPAPER

    9. CANVAS DROP CLOTHS

    to protect floor and countertop