A Guide to Kitchen Splashbacks

A Guide to Kitchen Splashbacks

Apr 27, '21

When designing a kitchen, there are a few elements that have the power to make or break the room and splashbacks are one of them. An eye-catching piece of decor that serves a practical purpose, splashbacks can be used above the sink to prevent water damage and behind the hob to protect the wall from messy food splashes. For those that want to maximise the style of their kitchen and create a fully coordinated overall look, kitchen splashbacks can also be used to cover the space between kitchen counters and overhead cupboards. 

For such an important design feature, kitchen splashbacks are often overlooked and simple questions such as ‘what can you use for a splashback’ and ‘what material is best for a splashback’ are rarely asked. Fortunately, here at The Panel Company, we know a thing or two about high-quality kitchen PVC cladding, and we’re here to provide expert advice on what type of splashbacks would be best for your new kitchen project. 

In this blog, we’ll be taking you through the pros and cons of certain splashback materials, pointing you in the right direction for your individual priorities and giving you a few style pointers to make sure you end up with the kitchen of your dreams.

How do I choose a kitchen splashback?

The most important job of a kitchen splashback is to meet your decorating priorities and living requirements. One person's perfect splashback could be entirely unsuited to the needs of another, so, when beginning your research the first task is to identify your priorities.

  • Easy installation - While some kitchen splashbacks will require an intensive installation process by professionals, others will be easily installed within a day. 
  • Money - An important consideration to make for any household upgrades or renovations, the cost of your splashback is inevitably an important factor in the decision making process. 
  • Cleaning - As its primary purpose is to protect the wall in your kitchen from splashes of food, water and everything in between, a splashback should be easy to clean. If it isn’t, you run the risk of spending more time cleaning your protective surfaces than you’d have had to spend on the wall itself. 
  • Practicality - Some splashbacks are great for backing the space between counters and cupboards while some are specifically designed for providing heat-resistant protection above an oven or hob. Don’t forget, you are free to mix and match to create the perfect custom splashback so don't be afraid to choose one splashback for your sink and another for your oven.
  • Style - While style may not be the most practical or logical factor to prioritise, there’s no denying that most of us want our kitchen to fit into our preferred interior decorating style. Whether you prefer a traditional kitchen style or opt for sleek, modern finishes, style is an undeniable consideration for every material of kitchen splashback.

What are the best types of splashback?

There are a few materials that are seen as particularly good for kitchen splashbacks but, as is true for any choice within your home, the ‘best’ choice is the one that suits your life and preferences. Keeping your priorities in mind from the last section, read on to discover the pros and cons of some of the most popular types of kitchen splashback.

Stainless steel

Perfect for those who love the industrial style of exposed metal, open cabinets and raw wood, stainless steel splashbacks are certainly stylish. Unfortunately, this particular material makes maintenance a daily hazard. Constantly in need of cleaning and wiping to maintain it’s high hygiene levels, stainless steel splashbacks only remain stylish if you’re willing to put the time and effort in to clean them regularly. 

  • Practicality - High hygiene rating when cleaned properly. High heat resistance.
  • Style - Very stylish for those seeking a contemporary, industrial kitchen.

Tile splashback

Able to withstand high heat without damaging structural integrity or colour, tile splashbacks are a good choice for behind the hob. Unfortunately, similarly to stainless steel, tile splashbacks require a high level of cleaning to ensure hygiene levels are maintained. Not simply a job of wiping the surface down regularly with a standard kitchen cleaner, tile grout lines also require special attention to ensure they don't harbour any germs.

  • Installation - Difficult to install, especially if you’re doing it alone, the results of a DIY tile installation can end up looking skewed, damaging the overall look of the finished splashback.
  • Cleaning - Due to the grout lines, maintaining a perfectly clean tiled splashback can be more troublesome than their 2D alternatives.

Glass splashback 

A modern style that is most often used for small sections of the kitchen such as above the hob, a glass splashback is a great way to bring a little colour with a glossy shine to your kitchen. With a wide range of styles to choose from, glass splashbacks are fairly easy to maintain and shouldn’t take too long to install. The primary downside to a glass splashback is the cost can be considerable, especially if you intend to have a large splashback.

  • Price - Glass splashbacks are potentially very expensive, depending on the size of the area you want covered and the style you go for.
  • Practicality - Glass splashbacks are incredibly durable, making them ideal for above hob placement.

Plastic splashback

An all round winner, PVC splashback panels that are made from durable plastic are certainly an easy favourite for kitchens. With endless styles to choose from, all at incredibly affordable prices, plastic splashbacks strike the perfect balance between affordability, practicality and style.

  • Easy installation - Plastic kitchen splashbacks are incredibly easy to install and, with no professional decorator needed, you’ll also save money on any installation costs.
  • Easy maintenance - Due to the simple wipe clean, 2D surfaces, splashback panels are incredibly easy to keep clean throughout the day.
  • Style - Thanks to the endless number of designs available at The Panel Company, opting for a plastic splashback leaves you with plenty of style opportunities. Whether you’re looking for a super contemporary look or a simple, gloss finish, you've got the freedom to choose with PVC splashback panels. 
  • Practicality - While PVC splashback panels are perfect for protecting walls from daily spills in the kitchen, use behind the oven is a different matter. Plastic splashback panels can withstand heat produced by the hob for standard domestic cooking, but will be damaged by splashing of hot oils and cooking fats. To prevent this damage, we recommend pairing your plastic splashback with a glass or stainless steel panel.

What is the best kitchen splashback?

Many people will settle on practicality and maintenance in order to style their kitchen exactly how they want it but, when it comes to PVC splashbacks, you can have the best of both worlds. Perfectly suited to protect the walls of your kitchen from the daily mess of cooking, plastic splashbacks offer both style and functionality, all while being the cheapest option on our list. Don’t believe us? Take a look at some of our favourite styles of PVC splashbacks below.

Tile-effect kitchen splashback

Tile-effect kitchen splashback

Long since favoured as an easy point of interest, tiles can bring a look of class to any kitchen but with the downsides of high costs and busy cleaning regimes, many prefer a PVC alternative. At The Panel Company, we have a wide variety of tile effect kitchen splashbacks to choose from but one of our favourites is the Dumapan SMP cement tile in grey. Featuring cool pastel grey tones and a soft mosaic design, these plastic splashback panels are certainly a statement in style.

Industrial concrete style splashback

Industrial concrete style splashback

Achieve the raw, stripped back feel that the industrial look is favoured for with the Vox Motivo Modern 3D PVC panels in the dusky colourway. Bold without being garish, this plastic splashback is an easy way to introduce the industrial style without the need for heavy duty metal coating every surface. 

High gloss splashback

High gloss splashback

Part of the reason glass is so favoured for kitchen splashbacks is the high gloss finish they bring to a room. Clean, shining and able to hold stunning colour, this stylish finish can be replicated easily with PVC panels. Take a look at our gloss white V groove panels as an example. Simple and yet endlessly sleek, these splashback panels are perfect for creating a clean feeling kitchen that is bright and open.

Ready to upgrade your kitchen and create a style you’ll love for years to come? Take a look through the collection of splashback panels for kitchens available at The Panel Company.

*While our PVC kitchen splashback panels are an excellent, affordable solution to transform your kitchen interiors on a budget, due to the nature of PVC - they aren’t recommended as a fire-proof, oven splashback. Rest assured our panels are class 1 fire-rated and can withstand heat, however, constant exposure can warp our panels.

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