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tmbrink 02-27-2009 03:02 PM

How to Drill Porcelin/Ceramic Wall Tile
I am installing a new shower door, and it will be necessary to drill multiple 3/16" holes in the wall tile and concrete board. Anyone have any tips or techniques to achieve this without breaking or cracking the wall tile ? What are the best type of drill bits to use? How do you cool the bits, Etc? Also, how many drill holes should i expect out of a single bit? Any help would be appreciated.

Mike Swearingen 02-27-2009 03:06 PM

I'm not a pro, but whenever I drill ceramic tile, etc., I always tap a good starter point with an awl or icepick to help prevent the drill bit from skipping. You can always cool a masonry drill bit with water, sort of like a wet saw. You can tell when a bit is getting dull, then just change it.
Good luck!

Bob Mariani 02-27-2009 03:10 PM

for porcelain and glass tiles you should use a bit made for cutting glass tiles. These finer diamonds will assure you of no cracked or chipped tiles. Ceramic tile can be drilled fine with a masonry bit.

wrangler 02-27-2009 06:14 PM

Yeah, what Bob said. Plus a hammer drill helps. I take my vertical tracks and place them against the wall with a piece of double sided tape on the back side to hold it in place while I plumb it with my level and mark the holes with a marker (I use a wet-erase marker that I can extend the felt tip to reach through the hole). Remove the track and then start out with the 1/4" masonry bit in non-hammer mode to start, then after the bit has etched the surface, switch to hammer-mode and it will glide right through the tile, concrete backer or whatever is behind the tile. Insert your plastic anchor, tap it in flush with a hammer, replace the track and screw it in! As previously stated, glass, porcelain or real stone require different bits.

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