Wednesday, April 2, 2014

How to drill holes into marble tile

Today the plumbers are at the house to install our tub and complete the other finish plumbing work for our remodel. I'm SO excited to get this bathroom finished and the FIRST thing I'll be doing is taking a nice, relaxing bath.

But until then, we had one last thing we had to prep before the plumbers could install the tub, and that's cutting holes in our tub base & tile for the faucet.

How to drill into marble tile

Bear with me on some awful night time photos, but as you can see our drop-in tub doesn't have the holes for the faucet. It will instead be on the tub surround that Justin built. So before the plumbers can install the faucet, they need three little holes cut to place it.

Marble Tiled Tub Surround

So today we're here to share how to drill holes into a marble tile.

Step 1: Follow the instructions from your tub faucet on spacing of the holes for your faucet and make sure that the spout will be positioned close enough to the tub so the water makes it into the tub.

Tub Faucet

Step 2: After measuring and positioning where you'll be cutting the three holes (Justin marked the spots on blue painters tape so he could see his marks) start drilling your first hole with a Carbide-Grit Hole Saw attached to your drill.

Make sure you keep the tile wet, just like you would when you're cutting the tile to lay. Justin used a bottle of water to wet the tile every couple of minutes.

Drilling Holes through Tile
Drilling Holes in Marble Tile for Tub

As you can see in the photo on the above right, a watery ooze will start to come out from the tile & hole saw. That's normal! This is from the cement board that you're cutting through below the tile.

Continue to drill until you've made it through both the tile & cement board. Below is what ours looked like once we got through those two layers.

Holes drilled throuh Marble Tile

Step 3: Depending on how your tub surround is built, you'll likely have some plywood that you need to drill through as well. To cut through this, Justin used a 1-1/4" spade bit (the same size as our carbied hole saw) on his drill. 

Drilling through Wood Frame

Step 4: Lastly, take out the parts from your tub faucet just to make sure that they fit nicely into the three holes you've drilled.

Checking Fixture Fit

And there you have it. Three pretty little holes all ready for the plumbers.

Completed Holes in Tile

 Now, who's as excited as I am to see the finished bathroom!?

Want to see our other tile projects? Learn how to round tile edges and corners or check out all of our tile progress in the Master Bathroom

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  1. It looks great! It must have been a little nerve-wracking least it would be for me! cut into that beautiful marble. : )

  2. Thanks so much for your Helpful tip! We will be drilling through some tile in my kitchen soon--so I am pinning this for later! Your bathroom will be beautiful-can't wait to see. found this at workit wed. have a great week.

  3. Wonderful tutorial. I wish we had this when we did our bathroom! I featured your post on Thursday STYLE too; stop by and check it out! :)

  4. My husband and I are thinking of remodeling our bathroom. I love the way your marble tile turned out. We have been talking about putting in a marble surround around our tub. My husband want to try and complete all the work himself so your tutorial will be really helpful.

  5. It's a wonderful work on Carrara tile and slabs,..
    You are going really well,..

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