All about Splashbacks

07 June 2011

Splashback is a generic term to describe a material used in an area which has to be cleaned often – generally above cookers, around kitchen sinks, laundry tubs and showers. Traditionally this has been done with ceramic tiles, stone and in the minimalistic 90’s, stainless steel. All have their good and bad points – tiles with a smooth surface are easy to clean but the grout is not, stone is expensive and cold and stainless steel has that commercial feel. Great for commercial kitchens but lacks the warmth most people seek for their own homes. Over the last 10 years glass has become the most popular material for kitchen splashbacks and is well on its way to becoming the preferred material for showers. For showers this is logical – in moist areas mould will grow quickly and if it is not cleaned everyday it will be a problem, especially on the grout. Glass splashbacks in showers will eliminate this problem.

All about Splashbacks

Glass is an ideal material for splashbacks – it is non porous, it is smooth so easy to clean, can be cut to fit any area, it looks good and it can be painted any colour you want. Really important when you want to achieve a certain look in a room. The latest in splashbacks is with mirrors (plain mirror or grey and bronze mirror) and photographs or wall paper designs on the back of the splashbacks. Great innovations.

Things you should know about splashbacks:

  • A) Splashbacks are made from 6mm toughened glass. Toughened glass is flout glass which has been put through a furnace. If flout glass breaks it ends up in shards which can result in serious injury. Toughened glass is hard to break, but if it does it will crumple into little pieces that will not cut you.

  • B) Make sure the edges of the splashbacks are polished.

  • C) Splashbacks are made from clear glass or low iron glass. Clear glass has a green tinge. Low iron glass (as the name suggests, the iron content has been reduced) does not have the green tinge. If you want a painted splashback, insist on low iron glass. This will ensure the colour is true and not tainted by the green tinge.

  • D) Low iron glass is more expensive than clear glass but is worth the additional cost to ensure the colour stays true.

  • E) Splashbacks can be painted any Dulux colour.

  • F) If you are going to have mirrors as splashbacks, ensure they are toughened or laminated. Really important if the mirrors go down to the floor in wet shower/bathroom areas.

  • G) If you want a photograph as a splashback, it must be of good quality. Especially if you want full size in a shower.

  • H) Put some thought into your colour or design of your splashback. The colour of your splashback will follow the same principles as paint on a wall. Colour reacts differently in different rooms. This is influenced by the amount of light and the orinatinion of the room. Best to get a $5 sample pot of paint and see how it reacts on the wall where you want the splashback to be.

  • I) Once glass has been toughened no more alterations can be made – no drilling, no reducing the size etc. Make sure you know exactly where the power points, GPO, shower head, taps are going to go before you order the splashbacks.

  • J) Glass is an inflexible material so get the installation sequence correct. Do not install a kitchen tap if that creates problems for the glass installation. Put the glass in first, then the tap.

  • K) Be bold and creative – how about mirrored splashbacks in showers? How about the elated feeling of walking into a shower every morning that the splashbacks have been made to look like your own private Great Barrier Reef aquarium? Or your favourite holiday photos as a kitchen splashback? For ideas, have a look at the attached designs. Even better, come up with your own.

  • L) Whatever you do – call us at Clearlyframeless first.

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