Base Cabinet Heights for a Tiled Countertop

      Cabinetmakers discuss proper cabinet dimensions to support a tiled countertop. August 29, 2006

I am installing some cabinets for a friend who is going to tile his countertop. I was planning on having the bases net out at 34-1/4 to account for 3/4 sub top, 1/8 thin set, 1/2 durarock, 1/8 mortar, and 1/4 tile. Does this sound ok?

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor A:
It really depends on the thickness of the tile and how much of a thinset bed is needed to keep everything straight and level. Also bear in mind that the screws used for durarock (or hardibacker, etc.) don't countersink as well as might be hoped, and this will raise your tile a bit. That said, your install height will keep you in the realm of 36" when you’re done.

From contributor B:I'm sitting in a kitchen I just finished and base are 34.5, sub ply 3/4, hardi ˝ - I used 1/4" tile and only thin set, and measuring full height is 36". Seems thin set added little to nothing in height. I had no trouble sinking recommend screws into backer. Bottom line 1-1/2 to 1-9/16 should be perfect unless you use heavy thinset and mortar – then you might consider 1-5/8".

From contributor C:Build them standard, and the customer can get his tile top to 36''. Thinset and backerboard on a counter top is crazy. Just 3/4'' CDX plywood and premixed type 2 mastic is warranteed to walk on, although I rarely walk on my countertops. Type 2 mastic directly on plywood works fine on a bathroom floor if the grout is sealed with cheap old Thompsons water seal for $10.00 a gallon.

From contributor A:You use mastic on plywood? In my neck of the woods, most jobs that call for tile have a 3/4" ply base which is then wired to anchor a .5" - .75" mud base for the tile. There are no seams, no leveling problems and the bullnose has something that is strong to be attached to. Most everyone these days uses granite for countertops. If your floor is not level, all this becomes moot. 34.25" sounds good.

Would you like to add information to this article?
Interested in writing or submitting an article?
Have a question about this article?

Have you reviewed the related Knowledge Base areas below?
  • KnowledgeBase: Knowledge Base

  • KnowledgeBase: Cabinetmaking

  • KnowledgeBase: Cabinetmaking: Custom Cabinet Construction

    Would you like to add information to this article? ... Click Here

    If you have a question regarding a Knowledge Base article, your best chance at uncovering an answer is to search the entire Knowledge Base for related articles or to post your question at the appropriate WOODWEB Forum. Before posting your message, be sure to
    review our Forum Guidelines.

    Questions entered in the Knowledge Base Article comment form will not generate responses! A list of WOODWEB Forums can be found at WOODWEB's Site Map.

    When you post your question at the Forum, be sure to include references to the Knowledge Base article that inspired your question. The more information you provide with your question, the better your chances are of receiving responses.

    Return to beginning of article.

    Refer a Friend || Read This Important Information || Site Map || Privacy Policy || Site User Agreement

    Letters, questions or comments? E-Mail us and let us know what you think. Be sure to review our Frequently Asked Questions page.

    Contact us to discuss advertising or to report problems with this site.

    To report a problem, send an e-mail to our Webmaster

    Copyright © 1996-2019 - WOODWEB ® Inc.
    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without permission of the Editor.
    Review WOODWEB's Copyright Policy.

    The editors, writers, and staff at WOODWEB try to promote safe practices. What is safe for one woodworker under certain conditions may not be safe for others in different circumstances. Readers should undertake the use of materials and methods discussed at WOODWEB after considerate evaluation, and at their own risk.

    WOODWEB, Inc.
    335 Bedell Road
    Montrose, PA 18801

    Contact WOODWEB

  • WOODWEB - the leading resource for professional woodworkers

      Home » Knowledge Base » Knowledge Base Article