Decorative tile BETWEEN granite countertop and granite backsplash

verb0979November 24, 2013

In our Master Bathroom, we have 2 vanities and a Roman tub that will all be topped with granite. I'd like to put a 3 or 4 inch decorative tile liner, then a granite backsplash above that. Has anyone ever done this? Any ideas on how to do this?

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I would mount the tile to cement board to bring it flush with the thickness of the granite. Be sure to caulk, not grout, between the top and bottom of the tile and the granite.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 4:34PM
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On second thought, it may be easier to install the granite backsplash and tile over it, especially if you have any finished ends.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 4:36PM
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Yes, that would be easier, but I would really like the look of the liner between the granite pieces. The finished ends will only be on the vanities, and I can disguise those with grout or matching caulk. There are no exposed edges at the tub... it is in a niche that butts up against each of the vanities.

So, in your first scenario, why do you say to use caulk and not grout between the top and bottom of the tile and the granite?

I was thinking of this order:
1) put up cement board
2) set the decorative tile (being careful about making sure it is the correct depth for the backsplash)
3) let the thinset dry completely
4) glue on the backsplash
5) let the glue dry completely
6) grout the decorative tile (????)
7) caulk the top of the granite backsplash

What do you think?

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 5:42PM
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Always use caulk when dissimilar materials meet. Different materials expand and contract at different rates. When this happens to grout, it cracks. And not a nice big crack that you could push more grout into, it's a hairline that looks terrible. Silicone caulk expands and contracts; no cracking.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2013 at 9:25AM
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Okay, so when I grout the decorative tiles, leave the bottom and top as empty as possible, then caulk? Or, caulk first then grout (I'm afraid the grout might not adhere to the area that is caulked)? Or just use sanded caulk for the whole decorative tile "grouting"?

    Bookmark   November 25, 2013 at 12:26PM
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