How to Cut Tile That Is Already Laid on the Floor

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Cutting tile applies to any form of rigid tile.
Cutting tile applies to any form of rigid tile. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Tile cutting is difficult. The best option is to cut tile prior to laying it on the ground. Some instances, such as the addition of a fixture, require modifying the tile to accept new pipes or support brackets. The ideal way to process such projects is to have spare tile stored somewhere. Cut the spare tile with a wet saw and install a new piece of tile. Cutting a piece of tile after it is installed requires careful use of a rotary tool or angle grinder.

Things You'll Need

  • Rotary tool
  • Cutting attachment with guide
  • Angle grinder
  • Cutting disc
  • Hand chisel
  • Rubber mallet
  • Crayon

Mark the cut to be made with a crayon.

Cut the grout out with an angle grinder using a tile-cutting disc. Hold the angle grinder carefully to not press too deep into the grout. Cut along the marked line in the same manner. Angle grinders work best for straight cuts.

Cut out the shape with a rotary tool using a cutting bit with a guide. Set the guide to the thickness of the tile. Drive the cutting bit into the surface of the tile away from the mark, and slowly move the tool along the marked lines. The rotary tool is ideal for cutting out curved sections of tile.

Pull the loose bits of tile and grout out of the hole by hand. A chisel works to pull out stuck particles. Hammer the chisel with soft taps using a rubber mallet on the edge of the cut to smooth out rough cuts.

Tips & Warnings

  • Dust will be flying everywhere when you cut with either tool. Wear a face mask and eye protection at all times. Make sure the room has ample ventilation if you will be doing excessive cutting.

References

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