Aspect Metal Tile Frequently Asked Questions

How do I need to prepare the wall before I install Aspect?

It depends on whether you intend to use the peel and stick adhesive on properly prepared wall surfaces or if you do not want to prepare your wall surface. We show both methods in detail in our Aspect Installation Guide.

Generally, Aspect can be installed over most structurally sound substrates if they are flat, clean, smooth, dry, and free of dust, wax, soap scum and grease. Acceptable substrates are drywall, plaster or clean, smooth tile (glazed, porcelain type tile; not porous or textured), concrete, smooth stucco, wood paneling, mirror, glass, metal, etc., Any damaged, loose or uneven areas must be repaired, patched and leveled. Fill cracks and irregularities with wallboard compound or spackling, then sand smooth with fine-grade sandpaper.

If using the peel and stick adhesive on the back of the tiles, the substrate must be primed with a fresh coat of high-quality oil-based primer (not latex, vinyl or PVA-based primer). Applications to latex, PVA-based paints or primers will cause adhesion failure. Consult with your local paint supplier for more information. If you do not intend to prepare the wall surface, you can use an additional adhesive as seen in our Installation Guide.

If installing Aspect over existing ceramic tile, be sure to thoroughly clean old tiles, but priming ceramic tiles is not required. Use isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol two-cloth cleaning method as surface preparation when applying tiles to a nonporous substrate, such as ceramic tile or metal. Failure to properly prepare the substrate may invalidate the warranty.

Can I apply an oil-based primer over existing latex or PVA-based primer?

Yes. An oil-based primer or paint will bond and seal extremely well over a latex or PVA-based primer or paint.

Can Aspect be exposed to humidity and/or water?

Yes. To ensure years of enjoyment of your Aspect installation, and for installations near sinks or tubs, the substrate to which Aspect is applied must be primed with an oil-based primer to seal it – ensuring a stable substrate. Aspect is impervious to water but substrates such as drywall or plywood are not.

Can I use Aspect tiles in my shower?

No, the adhesive is not engineered to be used in a wet environment such as a shower.

How can I make sure the tiles stick properly?

First, be sure to follow the instructions for substrate preparation. After you have the tile aligned where you want it, firmly press the tile over its entire surface area to be sure it adheres properly. You can test the adhesion by pulling slightly on the tile. It should be securely attached. If not, it might be necessary to add additional adhesive. Use a high-quality construction adhesive. Be sure to allow the adhesive 24 hours to set-up. See below for additional information. Our recommended adhesives are Loctite® PL Premium®, Loctite® PL Premium Advanced®, LePage® PL Premium® (Canada). Carefully read and follow manufacturer’s directions for the adhesive.

What do I do if my substrate is bumpy or uneven and a tile pops off?

Occasionally, even after properly preparing the substrate, the surface can still have bows, high spots, ridges or uneven areas. One way to test the area of the substrate to which the tile is to be applied is to place a tile (with the back liner unpeeled) on the area to see if it “rocks” or if it has a solid, flat foundation. If proper adhesion is difficult or impossible, a tube adhesive can be applied to the back of the tile to allow good adhesion. Be sure to remove the release film on the back of each tile before applying additional adhesive. Apply no more than about five pea-sized dots of adhesive to the back of a full tile. Keep the adhesive a half-inch from the edges. Press the tiles into place. If adhesive squeezes out around the tiles, be sure to wipe it off before it dries.

What are the recommended tube adhesives that can be used if a tile pops up?

Use 100% polyurethane (tube) adhesive, such as Loctite® PL Premium®, Loctite® PL Premium Advanced®, LePage® PL Premium® (Canada). Carefully read and follow manufacturer’s directions for the adhesive.

What are the reasons a tile may fall off?

A tile can fall off as a result of improper substrate preparation such as a substrate that is not clean, flat, smooth, dry and free of dust, wax, soap scum and grease. Or, bumpy, wavy surfaces may cause tiles to fall off.

Can grout be used when working with Aspect tiles?

A sand-less grout can be used. A grout containing sand is not recommended as the grout may scratch the surface of the tile in the cleanup process. If you want a grout-line look, colored or white silicone caulking will have the same effect, is easier to apply and provides a water-tight seal. Be sure to remove excess caulk or grout before it dries.

Can Aspect be exposed to UV rays and outside elements?

No. Aspect Peel and Stick backsplash tiles are manufactured for indoor use only.

Can Aspect be exposed to heat?

Aspect tiles can withstand heat up to 140°F without causing any damage to the product. We recommend a minimum 6-inch space between the heat source or burner and the installed tiles. You may also refer to your stove's (or other heat source) manufacturer for specific information.

Will heat impact the adhesive bond on the tiles?

The adhesive will not be affect by temperatures of 150°F or less.

How should the tiles be cut if a full tile is not needed?

A chop saw (motorized miter saw) is recommended for straight cuts. A jig saw or scroll saw is recommended for non-straight cuts. For circular cuts, a hole saw works well. See Aspect Tile Installation Guide for additional information. All cutting blades should be carbide-tipped or high-speed steel, and made for cutting nonferrous metal. When cutting is complete, use a fine-grit sandpaper or a small metal file to debur the cut edges. Take the cut tile to the work space and place it in its intended location and make sure it fits properly.

Alternative Option:

A utility knife with a sharp blade can also be used for straight cuts on the tiles. Measure and mark the tile where the cut must be made with a marker on the protective film. Using a straight edge, score along the entire tile using a utility knife. Carefully make a few passes with a bit more pressure each pass. Bend back and forth until tile separates.

How do I bend the tiles for inside or outside corners if I do not want a seam?

Inside corners usually look great when tiles are butted together. Outside corners can be hidden with our Aspect Trims.

If you would prefer to route and bend corners, please see this guide (PDF).

What should be used to clean the tiles?

Soap, water and soft cloth. A glass cleaner or grease cutter can also be used.

What should be used as a trim or an edge treatment?

Aspect should be treated like any other tile. Clear or colored caulk is a good option. Caulk can be painted to match wall color if preferred. Wood, plastic or other types of trim also work well depending on your preference and abilities.

Can Aspect be applied to a working surface or to the floor?

These applications are not recommended, as the rubbing could potentially scratch the surface of the tile.

What is the life expectancy of the Aspect Tile?

Aspect tiles and panels will last well-beyond the lifetime of your kitchen, bath or wall project. The tiles and panels are virtually indestructible under normal use.

Does the surface of an Aspect tile scratch easily?

Not easily, but it can be scratched like any coated metal surface.

When starting a project, would I work from one side to the other, or from the center out?

Working from the center out would balance the working area and ensure your largest tiles in the middle of your space. This could be important when a designer pattern is used. However, you can start at one end and work to the other.

If I wanted to remove a tile (or a few), how would I do so and what would I use?

Start by applying pressure slowly underneath the 3’’ side of a tile and increase pressure lifting the tile up. Note: Be careful not to damage the adjacent tile. A 1” putty knife or similar tool that applies even pressure across the surface upon which you are prying is recommended. Note: subsurface material like drywall may be affected due to the aggressive nature of the tile adhesive which may require touch up or priming prior to replacing the tile.

Will the “peel and stick” adhesive used to apply Aspect damage the surface it is applied to if a tile is removed?

Yes, possibly. Caution is advised when removing tile to eliminate as much old adhesive as possible. Some repairs may be necessary if this happens.

What is the flame spread rate on Aspect tiles?

Aspect tiles meet or exceed ASTM E84 Class 1 and Class A Surface Burn Characteristics.

Do you offer outlet and switch covers?

Yes, matching outlet covers for Aspect colors are available here.

Can I paint the Aspect tiles, and if so with what kind of paint?

To paint Aspect metal tiles, the recommended paint and preparation steps are below. For proper adhesion, be sure to complete both preparation steps:

Manufacturer Paint Preparation 1 Preparation 2 Application Type
Dutch Boy Dutch Boy Platinum Clean & Degrease None Brush: Nylon or Polyester
Roller: 3/8” nap cover
Conco Interior/Exterior DTM ALKYD Gloss Industrial Enamel (8500 SERIES) or
Interior/Exterior DTM Acrylic Gloss Industrial Enamel (8000 SERIES)
Clean & Degrease Interior/Exterior DTM ALKYD Rust Control Metal Primer (P851) or
Interior/Exterior DTM Acrylic Prime & Finish (P801)
Brush: Nylon or Polyester
Roller: 3/8” nap cover
Rust-Oleum Rust-Oleum Universal and Painter's Touch 2X aerosols Clean & Degrease None Brush: Nylon or Polyester
Roller: 3/8” nap cover

Can I use the Aspect products in my camper or RV?

Yes, you can use on the interior of your camper and we recommend using method 2 of our installation guide which states to use supplemental adhesive due to road vibrations and temperature swings.