Ceramic Tile over Formica Backsplash?

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Old 09-04-06, 09:14 PM
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Question Ceramic Tile over Formica Backsplash?

I am replacing my formica countertops with a quartz solid surface. I plan to also lay ceramic tile for the backsplash.
The formica goes up the wall as a backsplash and ends at the bottom of my cabinets.
My question is;
Can I just rough up the formica backsplash and put ceramic tile over it. i really don't want to remove the formica, but I need to know what the pros and cons are before I make a decision.

I have been told that it is ok to roughup the formica and tile right over it.

Thanks a bunch, Nelly
 
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Old 09-04-06, 09:29 PM
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What is the problem with removing it? I can't see the project but I think I would want to remove it and the drywall behind it, replace the drywall with cement board and tile over it. I would not be comfortable tiling on top of formica roughed up or not.
 
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Old 09-05-06, 11:12 AM
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I have to agree with buildpro68. There are some modified mortors that would stick to the formica (laticrete 333 or mapei karalastic) but you expose yourself to other issues such as the formica adhesive letting go due to the greatly increased weight. Better to do it right and enjoy decades of a trouble free installation.
 
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Old 09-05-06, 03:02 PM
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Remove the laminate backsplash and the drywall behind it (Im assuming the backsplash is attached with adhesive). Put in new drywall and tile away. Dont paint or prime the new drywall. Like the others, Im wondering why you would want to go over the laminate backsplash. Who knows whats holding it on the wall? I wouldnt do it.
 
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Old 09-11-06, 07:01 PM
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2 More Questions

1) If I remove the formica backsplash, why do i have to remove the drywall too? I thought I was suppose nail the backerboard onto the drywall?
Am I suppose to REPLACE the sheetrock with the backerboard?

2) I am getting solid surface countertops. Can I do my tile backsplash before the countertops are put in? I would like to do the backsplash first, if possible.

Thanks, Nelly
 
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Old 09-11-06, 07:26 PM
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Yes you want to replace the drywall with either water resistant sheetrock (greenboard) or preferably cement backerboard. This is not hard to do. The tile should cover the seam where the new meets old.

I would want to prepare the backsplash area with the greenboard/backerboard before installing the counter and do the tiling after.
 
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Old 09-12-06, 07:01 AM
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Nelly

Theres nothing wrong with leaving the sheetrock there if its not damaged after removal of the backsplash. I was suggesting removal in the event that the backsplash may have been attached to the drywall with adhesive and it may habe been more work to save the drywall then tear it out. Backslashes are generally not considered a wet area so cement board is not required here. If the drywall is in good condition you can tile it. If the drywall has been painted scuff it up with some sandpaper. Wipe the residue down with a damp sponge. You can set your tile right to the drywall. What size tile are you using for the backsplash? This may dictate your setting material.
 
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Old 09-29-06, 09:29 AM
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I have pretty much the same question, except I already removed the formica. The drywall beneath is in very good condition except it has a very hard adhesive left from what was holding the formica. It was put on with a notched trowel and is very hard and stuck to the drywall. I can't even dig a figernail into it.

Is it ok to install 4x4 tile directly over this old adhesive/drywall or should I tear out the drywall and replace?
 
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Old 09-29-06, 09:32 AM
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Tear out the drywall and replace with 1/2" cement backerboard. Just try to keep it neat so you can cover the seams with the tile.
 
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Old 09-29-06, 01:53 PM
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A backsplash is not subjected to continous water and does not need cement backer board.

You may be ok to set the tile over the existing drywall. If the remaining ridges are such that they will not affect the tiles being flat to one another then you will be ok. You can also skim coat the area to get it flat and then tile. You can use thinset or mastic (if the tiles are not natural stone) to set the tile.
 
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Old 09-29-06, 02:06 PM
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I say use cement board for these reasons. One since you have to replace the existing drywall anyway it's not that much harder to replace with backerboard. 2 you can hard trowel your thinset on it without worrying about scraping up drywall while you do it. The v notched 1/8" trowel I like to use for smaller tile is especially hard on drywall. 3 it is a much more positive adheasion surface that is stronger and completely moisture proof even if moisture is not a big concern with drywall overall in that area. I do not recommend going over old aheasive and I do not recommend ever using premixed mastic for anything. If you ever saw tiles that just fall off the wall when you touch them, that was mastic. Especially in your own home, why go "acceptable" when you can do it right.

edit: I thought I should add that I am thinking of a counter to cabinet installation. If you are just doing one row along the back of the counter top then I would just go over it without replacing anything. It would be easy to repair if there was any trouble down the road.
 
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Old 09-30-06, 01:30 PM
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Kitchen backsplash...drywall is more than fine. You'll not have a problem with it later and you will find the outlets are much easier to cut out. Matter of fact, mastic is perfectly acceptable on a kitchen backsplash providing the tiles are 8x8 or less and you are not setting any stone.

Sheesh, how many backsplashes out there have lasted forever with nothing more than a coat of paint? Forget greenboard too. Called "green" board because the manufacturer makes so much green on this all but obsolete product.
 
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Old 10-21-06, 01:03 PM
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Question

Well I am now getting ready to redo my countertop and backsplash. WHAT IS THE EASIEST WAY TO GET THE FORMICA OFF THE WALL??? I AM TRYING TO GET IT OFF, BUT THE SHEET ROCK IS TEARING AND SOME OF THE CHALK STUFF IS COMING OUT TOO. EVERYTIME I START TO DO THIS, I CUT MYSELF AND I HAVE A LOOOOOOONG WAY TO GO.

SOMEONE PLEASE GIVE ME SOME ADVICE...

I am putting 4X4 natural stone as the backsplash.
THANKS, NELLY
 
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Old 10-21-06, 02:12 PM
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Sounds like the backspash is attached the wall with adhesive. Easiest thing to do here is tear the sheet rock out with the backsplash. Put up new sheetrock, tape with drywall mud and tile away. Use a white modified thinset.
 
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Old 11-16-06, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by BuiLDPro68
edit: I thought I should add that I am thinking of a counter to cabinet installation. If you are just doing one row along the back of the counter top then I would just go over it without replacing anything. It would be easy to repair if there was any trouble down the road.
So are you saying that in some cases (existing countertops and cabinets) it's ok to tile over the backsplash laminate? Or do you mean if you're just doing 1 row of tile it's ok?

I'm curious because I'm doing the same thing; having countertops resurfaced with a new laminate and tiling the backsplash. The area to be tiled is relatively small (18"H x 80"L). I considered removing the existing backsplash laminate but my concern is ruining the adjoining wallpaper.
 
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Old 11-16-06, 11:35 AM
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Your previous advisers are mainly correct, but I have to come down on the side of the "just glue it to the sheet rock" crowd. Backer board will certainly not hurt the project, but is quite unnecessary with a back splash. In the process of doing minor repairs where the tile has removed some of the paper from the sheet rock, I have sometimes used the thin set to fill those areas in as I went and, to date, have never had a call back. Try taking tile off sheet rock that was installed with thin set and you'll tear up the sheet rock because it adheres very well. If it were my house, I'd pull the laminate cover, skim coat to level, and tile it, provided there are no issues that look like on going water issues or something that would cause the sheet rock to fall apart. It doesn't sound as if you've got that going on and a back splash serves mainly an esthetic purpose rather than any kind of structural thing. The only functional purpose it has is to allow a cleanable surface to catch anything that splashes onto the wall. That in mind, you do need the back splash to lip over the counter top to allow any potential spills to run across the counter top and not down the wall behind.
 
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