How-to Drill a Tile for Bathroom Fittings

How-to Drill a Tile for Bathroom Fittings

Need help drilling into tile. This How-to guide should help.

Equipment You'll Need:

    • Electric Drill
    • Masking Tape
    • Water
    • Wall Anchors
    • A carbide-tipped masonry drill bit or diamond tipped drill bit
    • Wood
    • Regular Drill Bit


Step 1 - Choose the Drill Bit

Since the surface of the tile is too hard for regular drill bits you will need to pick one of two common drill bits which are recommended for this task. One option is the carbide-tipped masonry drill bit, which is widely known for drilling into the tile. Designed to be able to drill through rock-hard surfaces, with patience and care you should be able to drill through without causing the tile to crack or break. The other option which is more expensive is using the diamond-tipped drill bits. These are even more durable and will not burn out as easily as masonry bits.

Drill Bits


Step 2 - Break through the outer surface

Tiles are made to be strong since they have to withstand a lot of abuse, this makes them resistant to drilling. This makes it hard to keep the drill in place when starting to drill as the bit tends to skip around on the surface instead of biting into the tile. One way to stop this from happening is to mark an "X" where you want to drill using masking tape. The tape should give the drill bit the necessary surface traction needed to break through the tiles glazed outer surface.

X Tile


Step 3 - Boring through the tile

Now you have broken through the outer surface of the tile it's all about patience. Start drilling on low speed, then gradually increase the speed as appropriate. Apply constant pressure, not too much as you will break the tile rather than drilling into it. Make sure you keep the drill bit lubricated and that it doesn't overheat. A quick and easy way of doing this is by pausing periodically to spray the drill with water. This will help to keep it both lubricated and cool.


Step 4 - Behind the Tile

Now you are through the tile, the rest should be smooth drilling through the wallboard or mounting surface. Make sure to decrease the speed and pressure to finish the hole through the wallboard. Once your through insert the appropriate wall plug so that you're able to screw into the wall. Your hole is now complete.