How to use a tile cutter

Introduction 

If you are a tile setter, you can attest to how sensitive the tile cutting job is; any mess can interfere with the installation outlook. To avoid tile cutting mess, I thought it is wise to share these useful ideas on how to use a tile cutter. With this step by step guide, you can make clean and correct tile cuts anytime, anywhere. 

Therefore if you plan to have your tiles cut manually, count yourself lucky because this article has all it takes to accomplish the job. We can also refer to this type of tile cutter as a tile snapper. You can smoothly cut tiles as long as you handle the tool with great care; of course, you will have to grab some salient skills from this report.

What is a tile cutter?

We can define a tile cutter as a manual tool for cutting tiles. It operates with a cutting wheel-like structure that runs along the two cut lines for scoring the tile’s surface.  

More so, it features a foot or breaker responsible for snapping the tile into two pieces. If you carefully and accurately use the machine, you can get accurate and clean cuts; else, you may end up with several tile pieces.

Sometimes you may think that using a tile cutter will slower your tile setting job but is not valid. Cutting depends on your experience; if you are a beginner, it will look more challenging on first attempts, but you will be working as a pro with time.

How to use a tile cutter steps by steps guide 

You can efficiently operate a manual tile cut with the following guide

Step 1: Choosing a suitable tile

You will find tiles of different types in the market such as metal, glass, ceramic, porcelain, etc. there are also other tile cutters that you can use to work on these various materials. If you make the wrong choice, you may face difficulties while cutting tiles.

Therefore, check whether the tile you wish to cut is compatible with your manual tile cutter. The most common types of tiles that work better with this manual tool are ceramics. Others are trickier. 

Step 2: Making measurements

If you wish to cut your tiles efficiently, there is a need to make some correct measurements. Exact measurements will also enable you to use the shortest time as possible to cut tiles. Besides, with the proper measurements, you will get accurate cutting.

You only need to take a pencil or any available inedible marking; mark your cut area and then put down the measurements. Start by marking both ends on the tile where you wish to cut and then draw a straight line with a square’s aid. More so, you may need the help of a tape measure.

Step 3: Setting up your tile

Don’t just jump into cutting the tile; ensure that your tile cutter is in a position to do the job. Place it on a flat surface, be it a workbench or rough and dull floor. Set up your tile in the equipment allowing it to cut through the marked lines. 

Lift the tool’s level, insert the tile, and then lower the deck slowly. 

Step 4: Scoring a line on the tile’s surface

After positioning the tile in your tile cutter’s glazed surface, it is now for scoring. You can do so by moving the scoring wheel, starting from the lower to the tile’s top surface. Here, one pass is always enough, but sometimes you may have to do several times for better results. 

However, it would help if you were careful not to score too much. Too much scoring will increase the chances of breaking the tile and cracking the tool’s glaze edge; it will end up with a rough finishing edge.

Step 5: Snapping the tile

After all the above steps are successful, you have a perfect scoreline; the next step will be to snap the tile. Here, snapping refers to cut or break into two pieces. If you turn the tool’s handle, the pressure bar will drop in the middle of your tile. Exert the pressure slowly for smooth and accurate cuts. 

The pressure is responsible for exerting weight on both sides of your tile on the snapping ridge. When you carefully put this step in place, you get smooth and clean cuttings. Remember, the perfect tile cutting depends on snapping and scoring. Therefore, there is a need to follow all the above steps for better results.

While cutting tiles, there are some considerations that you have to put in place for better results. Some of these measurements include using a tile nipper to shape and trim the tile corners, utilizing a tile file, and sandpaper to smoothen your tile’s rough edges. If you wish to make a drill on the tile, it is advisable to use a carbide masonry bit.

Lastly, don’t forget to wear gloves for your safety. You should know that these tiles may result in sharp edges that can cut your hand.

Frequently asked question 

What do I need to know when choosing the tiles?

You will find tiles of different types in the market such as metal, glass, ceramic, porcelain, etc. there are also other tile cutters that you can use to work on these various materials. If you make the wrong choice, you may face difficulties while cutting tiles. So check whether the tile you wish to cut is compatible with your manual tile cutter.

What does line scoring in tiles involve?

Scoring a line in tiles involves gently move the scoring wheel, starting from the lower to the tile’s top surface. Here, one pass is always enough, but sometimes you may have to do several times for better results. 

However, it would be best if you were careful not to score too much because too much scoring will increase the chances of breaking the tile and cracking the tool’s glaze edge.

Conclusion

Tile cutting jobs can be easy as long as you be attentive, and it can be more challenging if you don’t know how to use a tile cutter. You can safely and cleanly cut tiles with a manual tile cutter right at home by the aid of this step by steps guide. Please, be careful not to destroy your tool’s cutting edge and break the tile you are cutting.