How to Best Cut Self-Adhesive Tiles

gray and white tiles
  • 3-6 hours
  • Beginner
  • $80-230
What You'll Need
Vinyl tile cutter
Tape measure
Self-adhesive tiles
Flat surface
Straight edge

Self-adhesive tiles are a type of tile that many people install because they are very easy to work with. You do not have to worry about spreading out tile adhesive or working with something that is extremely fragile or heavy. To install this type of tile, you will need to cut it to fit in the space. Follow the simple steps below to effectively cut your tiles.

Step 1 - Determine the Size

tape measure

To successfully cut your self-adhesive tiles, you need to know the exact size of the piece that you need. When you get to the edge of a room, you will have a gap that needs to be covered with a partial self-adhesive tile. Use your tape measure to get the exact dimensions of the gap. You should leave approximately a ¼-inch gap away from the wall. This will allow the vinyl tile to expand and contract once you get it installed.

Step 2 - Mark the Tile

The next thing that you will need to do is mark the tile so that you can cut it. Measure from the corner on one of the tiles, and make a small mark with your pencil. Do the same thing on the opposite side of the tile. Then place your straightedge on the tile so that it intersects with each mark. This should provide you with a straight line across the tile where the marks were made. Use the pencil to draw a straight line along the edge of the straightedge. You will now have a perfect line to guide you with your cut.

Step 3 - Make the Cut

Husky utility knives

When you cut, you should leave the backing on the tile. This way, nothing will get into the adhesive and ruin its effectiveness. For this process, you could potentially cut the tile in several ways. Some people like to score the tile with a knife and then break it along the line. Others like to use a knife to cut all the way through the tile. While both of these methods can work, the best way to cut this type of tile is with a vinyl tile cutter. Set the self-adhesive tile onto the tool and then run the cutting blade across the top. This will provide you with a perfect cut every time. When you use this piece of equipment, make sure to place it on a flat surface so that your cuts are accurate. You can rent a vinyl tile cutter from a tool rental shop.