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How Much Does a Stainless Steel Backsplash Cost?

Stainless steel backsplashes are ideal materials for kitchens as they are highly durable and blend well with most kitchen colors and designs. The biggest appeal to homeowners is the fact they are easy to clean up after splatter from typical cooking. Stainless steel backsplashes are available in a variety of unique design options with nearly endless patterns and configurations. A homeowner might choose to either tile the complete backsplash in one stainless steel style or add in materials such as glass into the backsplash. Nearly all stainless steel fabricators can supply various surface textures such as quilted, ribbed or hammered stainless steel, which adds to the design options.

The Costs 

Average cost per square foot of stainless steel backsplash:

  • Minimum = $12.60
  • Maximum = $20.70

In addition to the materials cost of a stainless steel backsplash, homeowners must also consider the cost of supplies and labor to install the backsplash. Supplies such as construction adhesive, clamps, screwdrivers, framing squares and silicone caulk add approximately $5.45 per square foot to the overall cost of the project. The average cost for professional installers to place a square foot of stainless steel backsplash is about $15.30. However, this cost can vary based on the complexity of the specific backsplash configurations. In addition, electrical outlets may require slight modifications during the installation process.


Stainless steel is a popular material that has been used in kitchens for many years as a backsplash or for appliances. The more expensive stainless steel backsplashes may have features such as sturdier and thicker material. All stainless steel is produced with a minimum of 10.5% chromium, the ingredient that gives the steel its stainless properties.

Advantages of Stainless Steel Backsplashes

The primary advantage of stainless steel backsplashes is that they are incredibly easy to clean. By using the simple combination of hot water, soap and a sponge, the surface can be cleaned within minutes. In addition, they can be wiped dry to avoid water spots. Stainless steel does not have to be polished to remain shiny, unlike materials such as brass, copper and zinc which oxidizes and changes color. Other advantages include:

  • Sheets of stainless steel are relatively inexpensive, making it an attractive option for backsplashes.
  • The surface of stainless steel backsplashes reflects light, which gives off the illusion that the kitchen is a larger space. 
  • When large sheets are used for the stainless backsplash, this eliminates concerns regarding cracks or grout.

Disadvantages of Stainless Steel Backsplashes

Installation of stainless steel backsplashes may be difficult as the exact placement of window, outlet and switch cutouts is mandatory. Therefore, the cost to obtain an experienced and skilled installer may have a significant impact on the overall expense. Other disadvantages include: 

  • Hot pots and pans may cause the surface to heat up and cause burns. Therefore, it is recommended that homeowners still use trivets while cooking.
  • Stainless steel can be easily dented and scratched, so it may not remain in excellent condition during its lifetime.
  • Acidic foods such as coffee, citrus and tomato that remain on the surface for an extended period may cause discoloration to the stainless steel.
  • Fingerprints, grease, food and other items can show up easily on stainless steel. Although these things can be wiped up without much effort, this cleaning process needs to be done on a regular basis.

Last updated on Feb 23, 2015

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