How to caulk a backsplash

Now every time you do the dishes, you can admire your DIY prowess showcased by your neatly sealed backsplash. Here’s a guide on how to caulk a backsplash.

What You'll Need

  • Lexel®

    Lexel® synthetic rubber elastomeric sealant is the superior alternative to silicone caulk in clarity, adhesion, elasticity and paintability.

    Learn More
  • MildewFree*

    Mildew-resistant sealant guaranteed to stay mildew-free for 7 years, or we'll pay someone to re-do the sealing job for you.


    Learn More
  • eXact color®

    eXact color® is the easiest and fastest way to create custom-colored caulk with no tools required

    Learn More
  • Conceal®

    Water-based acrylic latex textured wood caulk

    Learn More
  • 1

    Gather tools

    You’ll need:
    • One of the products listed above
    • Utility knife for removing old caulk and opening the caulking tube
    • McKanica® Silicone Caulk Remover or similar product if silicone is present
    • Caulk gun
    • Beading tools, small foam brushes, or your trusty finger for tooling
    • Damp rags for clean-up
    • The dog to clean the dishes that are in the way

     

  • 2

    Clean out existing caulk and broken grout

    If you want your caulking job to stick and stretch for years to come, make sure you remove food particles, old caulk, and other contaminants. If silicone is present, use a silicone caulk remover. Dry the surface with a clean towel.

     

  • 3

    Apply the caulk

    A steady hand is necessary for a smooth bead, so make sure Fido isn’t under foot. Apply the bead 1/8”-1/4” wide to ensure there’s enough there to both stick to the joint and stretch with movement.

    Step 1 LXL Backsplash App

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • 4

    Tool (smooth) the bead

    Use your finger, a beading tool or foam brush to smooth the bead. This provides best adhesion and greater longevity.

    Step 2 LXL Backsplash Smothing App

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • 5

    Clean up

    Use soapy water* or mineral spirits** to clean up tools and surfaces. Stand back and admire your handy work. Get someone else to do the dishes for the next few days.

    *for MildewFree, eXact color or Conceal
    ** for Lexel

 Special Tip

Have a few loose tiles? The same caulk you use can be re-purposed to stick them to the wall again.