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Tin Tile Crash Course: How to Measure for a Backsplash

Is your bathroom or kitchen missing that special wow factor?

If you’re looking to add some dimension or color and pattern, consider installing a DIY backsplash. Better yet, how about one made of embossed tin tile? Material options aside, there are many aesthetic and functional benefits to adding a bathroom or kitchen backsplash. Whether you need to cover a wall area big or small, there are a few basic dimension numbers to nail down before shopping online for tin (or other) tiles and pressing that “Add to Cart '' button..

Get your tape measure ready? We’ll teach you how to measure for a bathroom for kitchen backsplash so you can get the right amount of tile.

In a Nutshell:  How to Measure for a Backsplash

Supplies-wise, start off by having a few home tools ready; this will include a tape measure, paper or notebook, a pencil, and calculator. Now let’s begin!

First, you will need to know the width and height of your current backsplash area, which you can do quickly with a tape measure. Once you have those numbers, now comes the easy math: multiply the width by the length (W x L) to get the total square inches.

Once you have the total square inches, divide that number by 144 to determine how many square feet of backsplash you will need. 

But Wait! How Do You Measure Around Windows, Cabinets, or Other Features?

Sure, some backsplashes may be one cohesive long rectangle shape, making it easy to measure the width and height of the area that a future backsplash material will cover. Unfortunately, most kitchens are not that clean-cut—features like cabinets, walls, or windows break up the kitchen into different sections. When it comes to a backsplash, it’s essential to measure each segment/area (and eventually, the full total) of tin tile needed to cover a full area. 

Note that American Tin Ceilings provides an easy template planner for you to mark down the dimensions of each segment as you measure. An additional notes area allows you to jot down notes, annotations, and/or a legend of symbols used for reference.

Steps to Measuring Segments/Areas for a Backsplash

Step 1: First step, is just as you would measure a clean-and-simple rectangular area of kitchen backsplash by width x height  (W X H), you will want to measure the W x H of each area that visually and physically sections off a wall. These sections are wherever a feature breaks up the area of a backsplash (i.e, countertop to overhanging cabinet). Keep track of each area’s dimensions by labeling and marking with a capital letter (or other symbol) on diagram. 

Step 2: No matter how many walls/areas/sections you have that will need to be tiled (and measured individually), at the end, simply add all of the individual W x H areas together for your final number before Step 3.

Step 3: Now that you have your grand total W x L (by adding up all the individual W x L areas), now multiply the overall width and height to find your total area in inches. Then divide that total area in inches by 144, and you’ll have the amount of square feet needed to cover your backsplash with your choice of material!

Purchasing Tip: It’s Better to Have Excess (Than Not Enough) of Backsplash Tile

Remember that it’s always better to have too much tin tile or other backsplash tile. Aim for purchasing 10%-20% over the area amount you need in case of calculation mistakes or if you need extra in the future.

Interested In Tin Tile Backsplash?

If you decide on doing a tin tile backsplash specifically, we know you’ll love the look (and how easy it is to install . . . and measure)! All American Tin Ceilings panels are sized at 24” x 24” (2’ x 2’) to cover ample space behind larger areas such as a cooktop. For areas less than 24”, simply cut the panels to fit accordingly.

A typical backsplash is 18" high, which means a 24" tin tile from American Tin Ceilings can generally cover 2 feet of wall space. As noted in the three “measure areas/segments” steps above for any backsplash, if there are areas in your kitchen or bathroom that exceed 24" in height, you'll need to multiply the length x the width of these areas to determine the number of additional tin tiles needed.

We recommend using a 6” repeating pattern (rather than a 12”) when it comes to our tin tile. This is because a 6” pattern repeat allows you to see the whole pattern on a more compact wall area, whereas a 12” repeat would be visually cut off on a backsplash. A 6” repeating pattern also allows you to cut the panels to accommodate your space between your cabinets and counter. When it comes to backsplashes, our metal tin tiles easily install with Liquid Nails (no wood required).

Better At Listening? Tune Into This Video Tutorial on How to Measure for a Backsplash

We’re glad we could cover the 101 on how to measure for a backsplash. It’s easy: any new or seasoned DIYer can use a tape measure, write down W x H numbers, and use a calculator to quickly figure out how much tile (or tin tile) is needed to install a beautiful new bathroom or kitchen backsplash. 

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