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Cutting a hole in tile is easy if you have a specialized tile saw. However, this is an expensive option for non-professionals. It would be a total waste of money to get such a saw for using it once in a while.
So, is there any way how to cut a hole in a tile except using a tile saw?
Luckily, yes; you can do it with some necessary tools that you might already have in your garage or workshop.
I’ll mention few methods of cutting a hole in tile including using a coping saw.
Cutting A Hole In Tile
The task is far easy than you are thinking. Follow these simple methods and steps; within a few minutes, you will be able to cut a hole successfully.
At first, you need to measure and pinpoint the location of the pipe of fittings that will come out of the wall. Once you locate the point of the tube, you have to deal with the tile of that place only. So, place the rest of the tiles in their areas except for the one you will cut a hole in.
Now, you need to hold the tile to the located hole of the pipe as if you are sliding the tile from the bottom; the left and right edges should line up with other tiles.
Slide the tile up from bottom to the located hole or pipe, and stop when the tile touches or hits it. Mark the upper edge of the tile where it hits the pipe using a grease pencil or felt-tip pen.
Then, you need to pinpoint the location again from the side. To do that, slide the tile from the right side while the top and bottom edges are lined up with other tiles. When you hit the pipe with tile’s right edge, mark here as well.
If you did mark correctly, your tile should have two marking points. Draw a straight line from these two points. You will get a center point, and this is where the pipe will go through.
Cutting A Hole By Drilling
Now, it’s drilling time. You need to drill the point using a 3 mm masonry drill bit. To prevent the bit from sliding on the tile, place a small piece of tape across the lines, and draw the two lines on the tape as well so that you can see the center point.
Set the drill to standard drill motion setting and start drilling at low speed. When you are done, change the drill bit with a pipe hole cutter, make sure the cutter and your fitting or pipe have a similar dimension. Then drill centering the point again.
But if you are not able to get a pipe hole cutter similar to the dimension of your pipe, you need to cut multiple holes.
Before doing that, measure the dimension of the pipe that will go through the tile; draw a circle on the tape of similar proportion. And then, cut multiple holes around the ring. Don’t go too hard, drill at low speed. Now, take a hammer and tap out the holes. Using a nail set will make it easy.
Again, take a chisel and angle it around the holes to chisel out the glaze between the holes. You can use a hammer instead of a blade, but it will make the task a bit difficult. Then hammer around the edges of the circle. It will take longer than chisel out the tips.
Once you are done, you are all set for placing the pipe through the tile. Use fixture to cover the rough edges of the circle.
Cutting a Hole Using a Coping Saw
You can cut a hole with a coping saw as well. To do that, first, you need to draw a circle on the tile where you want to reduce the gap. Stick a piece of tape on the ring, mark the circle onto the tape as well.
Use masonry drill and set standard drilling motion and then start drilling at low speed without giving much pressure.
The hole needs to be large enough to put the blade of your coping saw; so, make sure you cut a bit large hole.
You will need a worktable at this point to clamp the tile’s edge. Clamp the opposite side of the tile from where the circle is.
Now, wear protective gloves and disconnect the blade of your coping saw on one side, preferably the top one. The blade should be able to cut ceramic tile, if not, then get one from a local hardware store.
Place the open side of the blade on the hole and start sliding the blade through the hole. While cutting, move the saw up and down and curve the edge around the circle. Continue cutting until the entire hole is cut. Remove the blade by sliding it out of the circle.
Cutting A Hole Using A Hole Saw
This method is the easiest one among all three. Start by placing a piece of paper across the area you want to cut the hole. It will get the necessary drill traction working on such a glossy surface. Mark the square onto the tape that you are about to drill.
Attach a masonry drill bit and set standard drilling motion setting to prevent the tile from breaking. Place the bit straight above the center of the mark and start drilling slowly. Ceramic materials are tough to cut through; that’s why you need to maintain a low drilling speed; otherwise, you will end up breaking the ceramic.
When you are done, take a 3.2 cm hole saw attachment and make sure it’s able to cut the ceramic well. You need to attach it to the end of the machine. It’s rim embedded carbide grit cuts tile when the drill machine turns it.
Furthermore, moisture the area using water you are about to cut to prevent it from heating too much. Hold the hole saw centering the hole that you just made. Start drilling at a lower speed; it will slowly cut the desired hole within a few moments.
Don’t apply too much pressure unless you want to ruin the tile.
Now that you have unlocked the misery of how to cut a hole in a tile without using any professional saw, the next time when you need to install any pipe or fittings through tiles, you don’t need to call a professional to do the job for you.