What thickness is a granite backsplash?

marti8aAugust 13, 2012

It seems that some decisions are made without even thinking, and some I agonize over, changing my mind every 10 minutes. The backsplash is one of those.

We've made some changes that I'm not sure I'm going to like, but it's done now. We've eliminated the double oven cabinet and put the 27" oven in a base cabinet and the microwave in a upper. That will give us more counter space, but it also changes my backsplash ideas.

Originally I had planned to put granite behind the cooktop only, and beadboard beside it. While I think I would really like beadboard, I don't know that it would look right, or help sell when the time comes.

My kitchen cabinets will be similar to this color. The vent hood cabinet will go to the ceiling, but the others will have a soffit above, probably painted white. I haven't picked a granite or floor tile yet, but I think they will be similar to this photo also, or a little lighter. My walls will be lighter too, and I have a galley style, no cabinets on the end, and no island.

Traditional Kitchen design by Dc Metro Design-build Synergy Design & Construction, Inc.

My appliances are white, except my dishwasher. It is stainless because we thought it would look better with the dark cabinets, but I despise it. It never looks good, even after cleaning it, it has smears. So I'm sticking with white appliances. I'd like to have a lighter backsplash than the above kitchen, but what has me stymied is what to do behind the cooktop. I had tile behind it before, and it was a royal pain to clean. Stainless would be easy to clean, but I'm afraid it would always look bad between cleanings, like my dishwasher.

Would that granite look good behind the cooktop, or is it too busy? What is the thickness of granite when used on the backsplash, and is it usually flush with tile used beside it?

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If they are using the slab, then the thickness will be the same as your counter, so 2cm or 3cm. So if you have tile beside it, to make it flush, they will build up a base for the tile you select or they would inset the slab into drywall, etc to make it "thinner". I've heard of machines that will splice the granite to make it thinner, but it is uber expensive from what I understand.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 1:08AM
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Hm, I don't really like either of those options. Cutting out the sheetrock might work, but building up behind the tile wouldn't because the backsplash is open on each end.

Wonder what large tile would look like? Seems like everyone today uses subway or the mini subway.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 1:18AM
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You could do a kerlite porcelain tile. They are huge (39"x 118")but thin so you could go all the way up the wall behind your cooktop.

Here is a link that might be useful: mid america tile

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:03AM
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We very recently finished our kitchen and have full granite back splash to the upper cabinets. We had the electrical outlets and plugs fitted beneath the cabs, so there is nothing to break the flow.

I LOVE it. The granite is very muted and subdued and light, as it is a north facing kitchen with one small window. It is called Bianco Montanha from Arizona Tile. There is not much information about this granite; maybe it is sold under other names. We have natural cherry cabs.

The fabricators say there are two ways of doing a granite back splash. One is to remove the drywall and to glue the 3 cm granite to the studs. The other, which we did, was to have the 3 cm granite ground down to 2 cm and attached to the drywall. We live in Colorado and need the extra insulation.

Our kitchen is similar to the one in the photo you posted, except that there is a wall and the window above the sink, so the back splash goes on one long wall by the window and one short wall, by the stove.

I'll whisper this, contrary to most GWers I don't like the idea of mosaic or subway tiles in the kitchen, the upkeep of grout puts me off and the nooks and crannies where dirt can attach to.

Our camera is in for repairs, so no photo's yet.

Good luck with the decisions, I still have to choose pendants and floor tiles, but think I'll take a break.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:16AM
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Perhaps an edge could be put on the granite to transition to the thinner backsplash - some kind of beveled or rounded edge.

We use stainless steel cleaner on our stainless which gets rid of the smudges.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:23AM
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Our Entire backsplash is the same granite that is on the counter tops. We did that back in 2006 and we still love it.
I am a "grout hater" our old kitchen was white tile and grout, and our bathrooms still are but they will be slabs of granite, Onyx or whatever one they are renovated.

We like the fact that we can enjoy the granite from the family room, as it has lots of "Movement" and reminds us of our local mountains. We usually have bouquets sitting atop the granite counters, and can see the reflection of same off the backsplash. Somehow I just don't see how grout lines in the bouquets would add to the "Ambience"!

Here's a picture or 2.


    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 12:14PM
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Like Gardenpixie, we did a full granite backsplash in our kitchen. We did it for multiple reasons: showcasing our granite (really quartzite) more than just using it on horizontal surfaces would; no grout for easy cleaning, a simple uniform look.

We have the outlets and switches in our backsplash but had covers made out of our stone for them. Higher ones on the bottom of our cabinets would be harder for me to reach.

Our granite has a lot of movement, but I find the overall look calm and peaceful.

It's a more expensive choice than many other backsplash options, especially if one has chosen an more expensive stone. For us, it was definitely worth the cost.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 12:42PM
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Some stone yards have tile sizes of their more popular stones all cut already. I'm guessing this makes installation easier, more uniform, etc. I'm also guessing you can have tiles cut of your stone. But of course that completely does away with the motivation to minimize grout if that's your goal!

BTW, as for the grubby-feel from grout and its "upkeep", I'm really hoping that having a good ventilation system will help in keeping the grout cleaner. This is seemingly so. Even right behind my range I don't see any buildup after a year.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 1:58PM
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We really never had any problems with the grout, and still don't in the baths or even the shower, and we bought our house new in 1975.

It was never a cleaning or maintenance issue, I just don't like the look of all those lines, and I find it hard to believe anybody actually loves the look of grout'''It's just a "Necessary Evil" if you want tile. In fact when I did the Onyx fireplace surround in my family room, it is large Onyx tiles, but no grout and I like it that way!

Now that's just my "Tastes" as they say,
"Your mileage may vary".


    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 3:18PM
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we did a full granite backsplash on our cooktop wall - U shaped kitchen - love itt and would do it again a minute.
one of the best decisions we made. like you, we did not want grout behind cooktop either with all the issues/problems it has.

if you email i can send a pic.
still cant figure out how to upload, tried but not working for some reason???!!!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 4:56PM
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I have a full granite backsplash, 3cm thick, and the molding around the windows was not as thick as the granite. My fabricator beveled it. It looks fine. You don't even notice it.

I also have a north-facing galley kitchen with cherry cabs. I love my granite backsplash because I think that the simplicity of having fewer different types of finishes helps make the space look bigger. Since my kitchen is small - 15' x 93" - I chose a relatively quite granite.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 9:28PM
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Fori is not pleased

I'd do an edge to bring it down to an acceptable joint, if such frills go with your kitchen. :) It's sort of an extra (but subtle) frame for your 'splash.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 11:33PM
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