The original back splash in our coach was two pieces of plexiglass stuck to the wall with Velcro tape. Needless to say that while functional it left a lot to be desired as far as decor goes. While researching options we came across a few articles singing the praises of something called “Smart Tiles”. You can now add us to the list of those who recommend Smart Tiles as a way to quickly and easily enhance the decor in your coach.
What are Smart Tiles?
Smart Tiles are peel-and-stick tiles that resemble mosaic glass tiles. They come in a variety of styles and colors to suit a wide array of decorating options. The adhesive is strong and the company boasts that it is able to stand up to the heat and humidity in a bathroom. Best of all they are considerably lighter than conventional tile which is always a plus in a RV. The tiles are flexible which means that they will flex with the coach. No more worrying about cracked tiles or grout.
Preparing the walls for Smart Tiles
This is the most important step of the process. A poorly prepared surface will cause the tiles to not stick properly and could result in damaged tiles or a finished result that you’re just not happy with. You will to clean the walls with a degreaser, preferably trisodium phosphate (TSP). Once clean you will want to let the surface dry thoroughly before starting. The folks at Smart Tiles have an excellent post on their site about preparing surfaces.
Installing Smart Tiles
Installing Smart Tiles is as simple as the company claims. Just cut, peel, and stick! Ok, so there’s a tiny bit more to it than that but in the end it really is just that simple. Some things that we saw while installing our tiles.
- Avoid touching the adhesive
Each time you touch the adhesive backing it weakens the glue and hinders its ability to stick.
- Make sure your knife is sharp
The tiles are a gel material with a foil backing. When the knife is dull you run the risk of tearing the foil and ultimately damaging the tile. The box cutter style knife works well, just make sure that you have new blades and change them when necessary.
tip: when in doubt, change the blade
Installing Smart Tiles with tabs:
Installing Smart Tiles without tabs:
Cleaning your Smart Tiles
These tiles clean up pretty easily. A soft sponge with a mild dish detergent will do just fine. You want to avoid anything that is abrasive that might scratch or tear the tiles.
Where to get Smart Tiles
Smart Tiles can be found at Home Depot, Lowes, and Wayfair. Home Depot and Lowes will only have a limited selection and we even found that not every brick-and-mortar location will actually have them. You can also purchase them online. We’re the type of people where we like to see and touch things before buying them so we opted to pick from what was in the store.