The latest trend in interior design, high gloss kitchen splashbacks are a colourful and modern alternative to glass splashbacks offering a flawless and long lasting finish.
The high gloss is created by a layer of clear acrylic which is coextruded over a layer of coloured acrylic. The remarkable light admittance of the clear acrylic allows the colour to show through, resulting in a vibrancy and depth of colour not seen in other acrylic sheets.
Plexiglas Hi-Gloss acrylic can be mounted as a splashback around the kitchen behinds sinks and work surfaces, though it should not be used behind a hob or other heat source clear acrylic sheet. Exposure to high temperatures can warp acrylic over time, so if the high gloss is to be installed behind a hob a heat-shielding material such as toughened glass should also be used to protect the acrylic.
High gloss acrylic sheets are fastened to a wall or supporting structure with a high-strength double-sided tape along with crosslinking silicone to ensure a flawless and long lasting finish with no distortion to the surface of the sheet. However before the sheet is installed there are a number of preparations to make to both the sheet and the substrate to ensure the splashback looks its best.
Top Tip: High gloss acrylic sheet will be delivered with a masking film on the surface to protect from scratches and marks – don’t remove this film until the sheet is installed!
You may wish to drill and cut the acrylic sheet before installing to make holes for plug sockets, pipes or other wall features which will interrupt your splashback. To do this extreme care must be taken to prevent the sheet from cracking or breaking, so it is recommended that only pre-ground twist drill bits that are designed for use with acrylic sheet are used. When drilling the sheet, the drill bit should be positioned slowly and carefully pushed through. Slow the feed as the bit reaches the other side to prevent chipping of the coloured layer, and it may be beneficial to use a piece of wood as a supporting material. To cool the acrylic simply apply tap water to the area that has been drilled.
To saw the sheet, non-vibrating high speed machine should be used to achieve the cleanest-cut edges which may then be polished to restore the high gloss lustre. Circular hand and table saws may be used, but should only protrude slightly beyond the surface of the sheet to minimise vibration and movement. Jigsaws are also suitable for cutting high gloss acrylic sheets, and will effectively and neatly saw the plastic if only straight-tooth blades are used and if care is taken to place the shoe firmly on the masking film. This will safeguard the acrylic from unwanted chipping, preserving the edge for the most professional finish to the splashback. Once again, tap water may be used to cool the acrylic after cutting.