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Tin Backsplashes

Everyone has seen examples of molded tin ceilings that were particularly popular in Victorian homes and commercial buildings in the late 1890s. Now, that molded tin is coming back in the form of both decorative ceiling cover and backsplashes. The mainly practical reasons for its popularity are its relatively inexpensive cost and speedy installation time.

Pressed tin is a serious design statement in a time when everyone seems to be following, rather than setting design trends. These backsplashes definitely provide a lot of pizzazz to your kitchen design and, consequently, aren’t for the feint of heart. They provide a depth of texture and design that you just cannot produce any other way, and left unpainted, they will impact your kitchen with a lot of shine.

A word of caution: as the material utilized in ceilings, pressed tin isn’t seen constantly, but tin backsplashes are “in your face” all the time, so you should choose these designs carefully. They range from simple to extremely elaborate and can blend very nicely with your overall kitchen design, or virtually scream for attention.

There are a number of direct benefits of pressed tin used as backsplash material. According to one manufacturer, it will never fade, rust or discolor over time; it is water and moisture resistant, and it provides a permanent finish on which you can decide.

Some manufacturers provide pressed tin that is painted with a powder coating for durability while others provide the products unpainted. When installed, unpainted tin should be coated and sealed with a polyurethane product and caulked around the edges to prevent water and other substances from reaching underneath and causing problems. It can be installed directly onto your backsplash area, or glued to a backing material, which is then installed.

Pressed tin backsplashes come in many different designs and may be customized extensively. Some powder-coated pre-painted tin sheets that are suitable for backsplashes also come with matching switch plates for your all-important kitchen electric outlets.

Pressed tin is a serious design statement in a time when everyone seems to be following, rather than setting design trends. These backsplashes definitely provide a lot of pizzazz to your kitchen design and consequently, aren’t for the faint of heart. Here are the facts so you can decide for yourself.

Costs

Installing a tin backsplash is relatively cheap and can be tackled as a DIY project. The total cost depends on the amount of tin needed, the type used (including finishes, etc.), and installation. If you’d like to hire someone for the job, speak with a kitchen installer for cost estimates in your area.

Pros

Available in many different designs and can be customized to suit your style.

Tin backsplashes won’t fade, rust or discolor overtime.

Water- and moisture-resistant.

Cons

Tin backsplashes are “in your face” all the time, so designs must be chosen carefully.

It’s a material that can easily be dented.

Also susceptible to acid etching.

Durability

Some manufacturers provide pressed tin that is painted with a powder coating for durability, while others sell the products unpainted. When installed, unpainted tin should be coated and sealed with a polyurethane product and caulked around the edges to prevent water and other substances from reaching underneath and causing problems. Tin can be installed directly onto your backsplash area, or glued to a backing material, which is then installed.

Maintenance

Tin backsplashes are extremely easy to maintain. Most can be cleaned with a mild cleaning solution and warm water. If your backsplash is painted or has a special finish, however, make sure to change your cleaning regiment accordingly.

Common Questions and Answers

What type of adhesive is best when it comes to installing a tin backsplash?

AcrylPro is recommended if you are installing tin panels to a wall application, but other adhesives like Liquid Nails work as well.

What pattern works best with a tin backsplash?

Since the backsplash area is relatively small, a 6” pattern tends to work best. This will allow for a 3-pattern vertical repeat.

History

Molded tin ceilings became particularly popular in Victorian homes and commercial buildings in the late 1890s. Today, molded tin is coming back in the form of both decorative ceiling covers and backsplashes.

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