How to Cut Porcelain and Ceramic Floor Tiles

Our expert, Craig Phillips, started his working life as an apprentice bricklayer, and after several years of studying went on to set up his own successful construction company. In 2000, his life took a dramatic change when he won Britain’s first ever reality TV show, Big Brother.  Craig put his new found fame to use, and went on to combine his knowledge of construction and media savvy to forge a brilliant career as one of the UK’s leading DIY and home improvement experts.

With his vast knowledge, we thought he’d be the perfect person to help create our series of  ‘How To’ videos that are designed to answer the top ten most frequently asked questions that we receive about tiles and tiling.

In our fifth video, Craig takes you through the process of cutting porcelain and ceramic floor tiles.

For cutting the full length of a very large format tile (1200mm x 600mm), Craig uses a 1250mm straight rail tile cutter. Fixed to a workbench, the tile is placed in the centre of it and the tile is marked where it will be cut. Ensure the tile edge is flush against the square end so that it’s straight. Place the blade on the mark where the tile is to be cut. Place the blade down gently, pull back 10mm and work your way to the other end of the tile, scoring the full length of the tile first.


For this equipment, you must then lift the arm up and press the handle down then straddle the breaking arms on the score mark about 30mm from the top of the tile. Then using a short, sharp pressing motion, break the tile at the score mark.


No matter the size of the tile, the cutting method is essentially the same – simply adjust the size of the equipment to the scale of your tile.


For mosaic tiles, you’ll want to use a unit with a moveable breaker. This allows your to score individual mosaic tiles and then break them separately.


For cuts which are not straight through the tile (perhaps for tiles cut around pipes, etc), you’ll want to use a wet cutter which allows for smaller individual cuts. Filling the water reservoir in the unit keeps the blade cool and reduces dust.


Not sure which equipment is best for your tiles? Tile Mountain’s customer service department would be happy to advice you which unit is the best fit for your tiles if you have any questions.