How Can You Cut Tiles At Home
3 ways to cut tiles at home Ways and tools for cutting and adjusting tiles with your own hands to the required size. How to use a manual tile cutter and grinder to cut tiles.
Step-by-step instructions on how to make L-shaped cuts on tiles
Since the tile cutter can only cut tiles straight, many have difficulty with L-shaped cutouts. The easiest option is to divide this tile into 2 rectangular elements, but then you get an extra ugly seam that will catch your eye.
But this can be avoided if the short side is cut with a grinder, and then the long one with a tile cutter.
The second method: by any method available to you, a cut is made on the glaze, and the excess is gradually broken off with pliers. Irregularities are sanded with sandpaper. This option will even allow you to get a rounded incision for abutting the risers.
Cutting tiles with a manual tile cutter
How a manual tile cutter works
- The tile is inserted into the tile cutter, and the markings on it are aligned with a special mark.
- The handle is lowered and held away from you. It must be driven at the same speed and even pressure so that the roller cuts the glaze to the same depth. It will be enough to run the roller once. If you drive several times, the breakage can turn out to be of poor quality.
- Next to the roller there are special paws that lower and break the tiles into 2 parts after a sharp push on the lever. Over, all tile cutters have a metal tubercle on their platform, and soft pads along the edges. When you press down on the edges of the tile with your paws, maximum tension will be created at the notch, if correctly aligned with the backing, and it will evenly break off.
It is difficult to explain this in words, so it is easier to look at which shows how to cut tiles correctly with a tile cutter:
High-quality tile cutters allow you to cut even 10 mm thick tiles without any problems. And it doesn’t matter at what angle you cut it: at least 45 degrees, at least 30.
3 ways to cut tile at home
Any process of laying ceramic tiles is not complete without cutting it. There will be a lot of it especially if you use some kind of non-standard layout, for example, diagonally. In the last article, we talked about which layout is better to choose in order to get uniform and beautiful cuts everywhere. Now we will talk about how to properly cut tiles at home.
As you know, tiles are made of baked clay, which is covered with glaze on top. It’s hard to break it with your hands, but if it lies on any unevenness, then it easily cracks from a small load. To simplify this process and make the required break line, you need to loosen the top layer of the glaze, that is, cut it, and therefore make efforts to break.
There are 3 main ways to do this:
- Special hand tool, electric tile cutter or special tongs.
- Other handy sharp tools.
Let’s talk in more detail about each tile cutting method.
Fast navigation through the article
How to cut tiles without a tile cutter
If you only need to cut a few tiles, it doesn’t have to be spent on a tile cutter. You can use the tools at hand:
- Glass cutter.
- Drill. It should preferably be with a victorious tip, as it will scratch the tile better.
- Construction knife.
Attach a metal ruler to the notch and draw once with a glass cutter or drill. A deep scratch should remain on the enamel. If you use a knife, but you will need to carry out several times.
Place the tile at the corner with the cut and press down on the edges with a sharp motion. The cut will not turn out perfectly flat, unlike the tile cutter, but you will not have to spend additional money.
We cut the tiles with a grinder
Sometimes there are cases when you need to cut a narrow strip of 0.52 cm tile, and a regular tile cutter does not take it, because it has too wide legs.
In such cases, you need to draw an incision with a pencil and make a cut with a grinder with a diamond disc. But if you try to cut it off in one go, the narrow strip will break off in parts. Therefore, you need to smoothly and without pressure walk the grinder along the markings to get an incision about 2 mm deep. You need to walk along the mowing line with the disc, and not directly along it, then the width of the already narrow strip will not decrease.
Using the same method, running several times along the same seam will cut a narrow strip. The second and next time it will be possible to drive the grinder faster, but try to press it to the opposite side, then there will be no chips.
It is better to do this work by weight, so the vibration will go into the hands. When you already see that the strip will soon fall, it is advisable to put something soft so that it does not break.
Cutting tiles with a grinder with a special diamond-coated disc on tiles
Be sure to wear glasses when working with a grinder.
How to cut porcelain stoneware
It is believed that porcelain stoneware is the hardest material from which floor tiles are made. You can trim it in the same way as a regular tile.
Sometimes simple floor tiles are more difficult to cut than porcelain stoneware. There is a hardened tile on which, after cutting with a tile cutter, almost no notch in the glaze is visible. And even the diamond disc on the grinder does not take it, the cut turns out to be torn, like after a tractor. In such cases, you need to use a grinder, and saw off a 23 mm groove on the back to mark the place of the break.
Currently, modern technology offers many devices designed for pruning. They are subdivided into specialized and amateur ones, however, this division is rather arbitrary. Each of the selected tools has a high functionality, suitable for better cutting porcelain stoneware at home. Some are small, while others are very cumbersome. Most often, the choice falls on:
- Glass cutter and pliers;
- Tile cutter;
- Diamond wire;
- Sharp forceps.
These options are suitable for tiles with a soft surface. It is worth knowing that a large amount of work performed with such tools will still become too exhausting. Adjusting with them will be a great finishing touch though.
Cutting ceramic tiles at home
Today, tile occupies a solid first place among convenient and practical materials. It is used for finishing the floor, walls and facades of the building. It is used in the kitchen or bathroom, as well as in the hallway. You can do the installation of ceramics with your own hands, however, this process is not complete without cutting the material, for example, quite often it is required to cut the tiles when laying diagonally.
In addition, the question arises, how to cut ceramic tiles at home? For cladding work, the modern market offers a wide variety of options. The final decision, as a rule, depends on many direct and circumstances. After all, in order in order to correctly cut the tiles, special skills are not required, but it is necessary to have information about certain subtleties in working with cutting tools.
There are certainly several advantages to using hand-held household cutting tools. Their main advantage is their affordable price. The purchase of hand tools will not create problems for the family budget. In addition, they take up very little space, which allows them to be stored at home. In addition, using the same tile cutter is very convenient. However, in terms of functionality and practical application, they are significantly inferior to electrical devices.
Electrical appliances work much more efficiently. They carry out all the tasks assigned to them, even the most difficult ones. But there is no point in acquiring them if one-time or very rare use is meant. Therefore, handheld devices are suitable in this situation, by the way!
Ways to use glass cutter:
- Mark the line for the cut.
- Place the tiles on a surface to prevent slipping.
- Draw a section with a glass cutter using a ruler, without pressing too hard. All this must be done without hesitation.
- Tap back along the notch.
- Move the products to the edge of the table with the cut section.
- Press down on the edge of the tile. If you did everything correctly, the edge will break off along the mowing line.
- Correct the remaining irregularities with tongs and sandpaper.
- First, you should put the tiles on the base of the appliance.
- Then you need to evaluate the correctness of the cut line marking the cut with the position of the cutter, since they must match.
- Then it is required to firmly press the blade against the ceramic product, and at this moment pull the tool handle.
- Pay special attention to correctly guide the blade to the tile in time.
- The movement carried out should be carried out smoothly, not very strong, but not weak either.
- All this should be tried to be done in one approach, otherwise the final result is likely to be unsatisfactory.
- Then the resulting cut is broken by hand. If done correctly, the tile will break off along the mowing line of the furrow.
How to choose the right one?
In order to start trimming ceramics at home, it is best to start by choosing the right tool.. In each case, a different set of fixtures will be required, since the tiles differ in size, texture and performance. For example, for glazed tiles that are porous and soft, it is better to use a glass or tile cutter. It will be easy to cut the material with it. To cope with a harder surface, like ceramics, he will no longer be able to.
For porcelain stoneware, a more thorough hike will be required in the form of specialized electrical devices. The greater the strength of the raw material, the more thorough the approach should be. Thus, it is possible to cut the tiles on the front side. Glass cutting tools, as well as other devices that work on a similar principle, will not help here. But the electric devices will be just right! The main thing is to pay special attention to the edges of the products, since working with the relief structure is considered difficult due to the formation of chips or pattern violations, even with a slight deviation.
Why are electrical appliances so good? With the help of these tools, you can do all the necessary work in a short time without spending significant efforts. Such devices are mainly used in industrial conditions, since there should be a fairly large amount of work or professionals for whom finishing is the main way to make a living. What it is:
- Electric tile cutters;
- Electric glass cutter;
- Circular saw with a disc attachment;
Electrical units can effortlessly tackle the most difficult surfaces, and in any quantity. The strength of the processed material does not play a special role for them, so they are suitable for almost all types of processing. With these tools, it is very convenient to make cutouts to the shape, which helps when laying tiles in a bathroom with different curves. The main disadvantages of devices include their size, as well as cost.
Before you can cut the paving slabs, you need to carry out a number of preparatory work.
Before you start cutting the tiles:
- Find a comfortable, spacious and remote place from the warehouse or object.
- Carry out all measurements and calculations, mark the material using a protractor, ruler, pencil, etc. When installing ordinary tiles, all markings are performed during preparation, when a drawing is created, the markings are made in fact, as the finished elements fit to each other on the canvas. When marking, you need to remember about a technological gap of 3-5 millimeters, which ensures easy installation of the tile in the place allotted to it, without the need to hammer elements and cracks.
- Equipment for cutting, availability of replacement parts, consumables are checked.
- Personal protective equipment, clothing, gloves, glasses, respirator are being prepared.
Application of the guillotine
The guillotine knife is a special machine specifically for cutting paving slabs, which is a laying table equipped with handles, guides and, in fact, a knife. The main advantage of this cutting method is the absence of dust during work and the ability to handle large volumes of material.
How to cut a tile with a guillotine knife:
- Placing tiles in the gap formed by the table and knives.
- Bringing the knife to work with the handle, the tool is lowered and, under the influence of its weight and high speed, breaks off a piece from the tile in the right place. During work, it is important that pressure is applied to the entire handle (not to the end), as otherwise the element can be damaged and injured due to unexpected tile splitting.
- It is important to monitor the sharpness of the knife if it is dull, it will overheat, periodically get stuck in the cut, and undergo deformation. Sharpening is needed when visible burn marks and ugly yellow spots remain on the cut tile, and the cut is very rough.
To cut off the desired part of the paving slabs, you need to stock up with a whole set of tools. Especially if a large area is being installed and concrete elements will have to be cut in considerable volumes.
What you need to cut tiles:
- Guillotine knife or special electric circular saw
- Grinder with diamond / grinding disc
- A hammer
- Hacksaw for metal
- Metal ruler
- Regular (but better construction) pencil
Depending on the tasks and characteristics of the material, the set of tools may vary, but the main points look exactly like this.
Before cutting the tiles, you need to prepare very carefully. And we are talking not only about measuring and marking the concrete elements themselves, but also about the place of work. It is advisable to set aside a special place for safe cutting of tiles, which will be located at a sufficient distance from the rest of the material and the already installed coating, as well as machines, various objects, etc.
When dust gets on the wet surface of the elements, the dust spoils it much faster: for example, if the cut tile differs in color from the already laid one and dust from it falls from above, there is a risk of the need to completely change the coating.
To cut the tiles properly, you need to correctly measure. Usually, about 10-15% of the stock is added to the obtained figures (then you can cut off the edges and remove the excess). For tiles of the original shape, the margin is increased.
They cut the tiles strictly according to the intended mowing line, trying not to press hard on the material, since the tiles can fall out of hands or break into pieces. In a situation where the process of cutting with a grinder is difficult, you can sprinkle the tiles with masonry sand in a small amount.
How and how to cut paving slabs at home: grinder, machine, guillotine
The question of how to cut paving slabs is relevant for everyone who is engaged in the arrangement of the local area, creates garden or pedestrian paths, mounts coverings of various types from this material. It is almost impossible to lay the tiles without cutting; there will still be areas where you need to mount a section that is smaller in size or of a different shape, especially when it comes to curly tiles.
In many ways, the complexity of cutting is influenced by the shape of the tile: it is easier to mark and cut square and rectangular than a wave, hexagon, Z profile, etc. In the process of laying paving stones, certain patterns are usually formed, ornaments that require careful adjustment of the elements in size. In addition, you need to be able to properly process the edge of the tile cut so that the coating is neat and aesthetic.
Different tools are used for cutting tiles, the choice depends on the master’s skills, the type of tiles, the conditions and characteristics of the work. But, first of all, you need to study all existing technologies.
Before cutting the paving slabs with a grinder or a guillotine, by any other method, it is imperative to ensure the protection of the master. Otherwise, it is difficult to guarantee the safety of work and the absence of the risk of injury.
Safety measures when cutting tiles:
- Protective equipment (especially if a method is chosen for cutting tiles, which involves the appearance of a large amount of dust, a high speed of rotation of parts, etc.), safety glasses, a respirator, special clothing made of very dense material will save you from dust and injury.
- Special headphones to protect against too loud noise.
- The study of the rules for operating the selected tool is common: do not bring your fingers to rapidly rotating mechanisms, carefully work with power tools, carefully check devices and parts before starting work, do not use broken or malfunctioning devices. Each method presupposes its own set of rules: for example, if the paving slabs are being cut with a grinder, then the tool must be held with both hands by the side handle, use a protective screen against dust and sparks, ensure electrical safety, etc.
- In the process of work, follow the details and mechanisms of the guillotine knife, grinder circles need to be changed in time, used only if they fully comply with quality standards.
How to cut tiles at home?
The production of works on covering the walls and floors of different rooms with ceramic tiles is not complete without cutting the tiles, since usually it is not always possible to use only whole plates and some of them have to be cut. How to cut tiles with your own hands? What tools should be used for this? How can you cut the tile so that the tiles have smooth edges and the plate does not split?
When laying tiles, there is a need for cutting. Use special tools to keep the edges of the tiles even.
In order to cut high quality ceramic tiles, it is necessary to use special tools and devices. If the work performed is of a small volume, then hand tools are usually used. When covering large areas with tiles, professional equipment is used. Let’s take a look at various techniques and tools for cutting ceramic tiles.
How can you cut tiles with wire cutters?
Nippers are used to break off tiles.
This tool is used when it is necessary to cut tiles for holes in different places: for platbands, for water pipes, etc. Nippers do not cut in the literal sense of the word, but break off small pieces from the tiles along the cut line. The nippers themselves have 2 carbide-coated clamps, the upper one cuts the glazed layer on the tile, and the lower one serves as a support for the plate. Cutting pliers are used like this:
- The contour of the recess is applied to the tile;
- Insert the tile into the nippers so that the upper clamp is on the marked mowing line;
- Squeeze both halves of the tool and break the tiles along the markings; you cannot bite off large pieces, the edges will turn out to be uneven or the tile itself will crack;
- Having completely passed along the marking and removing unnecessary material, the cut on the tile is cleaned with a file or diamond sandpaper.
The use of a manual machine at work
Tile cutting scheme with a manual machine.
Such a slab cutter is used to cut plates with a thickness of no more than 5-6 mm. The tool has a quite reasonable price and makes it possible to relatively easily and quickly cut the required number of tiles; it is well suited for doing cladding work with your own hands.
It is applied in the following order:
- Mark the part to be cut with a pencil or felt-tip pen on the tile;
- The material is installed on the base of the device so that the cutting line is under the impeller of the machine;
- Using the handle of the tool, carefully cut the cut with the impeller along the marked mowing line;
- The tile is fixed on both sides of the intended cut using the so-called wings;
- Lightly hitting the handle of the machine, separate an unnecessary piece from the tile.
If after several such blows the tile remains intact, then try to cut the next plate.
Electric ceramic cutter
At the heart of the electric tile cutter is a diamond disc that allows you to make even and beautiful cuts.
This device has a diamond disc as a working tool and will cope with tiles of any thickness.
When working, you get smooth cuts with rounded smoothed edges.
Such a machine can be used for any amount of work, it is used when cutting various ceramic and stone slabs, with the exception of those coated with carbide chips, which can damage the diamond disc.
They work on this device like this:
- The cut line is applied to the tile with a pencil;
- The marked tile is placed on the working platform of the machine, and tightly holding the plate with both hands and pressing it to the base of the device, slowly move the material under the blade of the diamond disc;
- When working, special glasses are used to protect the eyes and the level of cooling water in the machine pan is constantly monitored;
- The liquid is periodically changed during operation; it becomes clogged with ceramic chips;
- Do not try to increase the speed at which the tiles are fed under the disc; they may crack.
How to cut tiles?
Cutting tools: A-tile cutter; B-crown carbide; S-grinder; D-manual tile cutter; E-pliers; F-glass cutter; G-hacksaw for metal.
On the market, manufacturers sell a variety of attachments and tools to accomplish this task.
Of all the proposed variety, you can use the following for independent work:
- Manual slab cutter;
- Its electrical counterpart;
- Tile cutters;
- Regular roller glass cutter;
- The so-called grinder;
- Metal pencil with a victorious tip.
How to use these tools when cutting tiles will be discussed below.
How to cut a tile with a glass cutter or grinder?
With a glass cutter, you can make a straight cut in the material quite quickly. To do this, perform the following operations:
- Outline with a pencil (felt-tip pen) the line along which they are going to cut the tile;
- Press a square of material to the table with one hand, and with the other, directing the glass cutter towards yourself and holding it at an angle of 90, hold the tool with pressure along the intended mowing line;
- The cut plate is placed on a wooden block (or on the edge of the table) and with a blow of the palm, break the tile along the cut line.
Scheme for cutting tiles with a stele cutter.
In addition, difficulties arise in its application when performing a curly cut mowing line. Now let’s look at how to cut a tile with a grinder.
To use it in facing work, you need to purchase a diamond disc, which allows you to use this universal tool for cutting tiles both along straight and curly lines. Compared to an electric tile cutter, the grinder is more mobile, but in terms of cut quality it loses to it. After cutting the tile with this tool, you need to clean the sections with a file or sandpaper. Use the grinder like this:
- A cut line is drawn on the plate;
- The tile is fixed in wooden clamps, or it is pressed with a foot and a cut is made with a grinder;
- The edges of the cut are cleaned with a file.