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How to Fill in Holes in Ceramic Tile

Larry Simmons

Redecorating with ceramic tile may sometimes mean removing items screwed to the tile surfaces. Removing those items will reveal the holes drilled through the tile to mount the objects. Leaving the holes in place can create moisture problems for the tile and presenting a less-than-attractive appearance. To correct the problem, you can fill in the holes in the tile with a patch of auto body filler. The filler creates a patch that's long-lasting and as smooth as the surface of the tile. It's also paintable, allowing you to conceal the patched area by blending it with the surrounding tiles.

Removing an outlet will leave two visible screw holes through the tile beneath, requiring repair.
  1. Clean out the holes in the tile, using a nylon brush, and clean the tile face surrounding the tiles with warm water. Pat the surface dry with a clean cloth.

  2. Mix a small batch of auto body filler on a paper plate by mixing the hardener in with the filler material with a small putty knife, using the mixing ratio suggested by the filler manufacturer.

  3. Fill the holes in the ceramic tile with the auto body filler. Pack the holes firmly with the filler, using the putty knife, until you cover the holes with a slight layer of filler overflowing. Wait for the filler to dry slightly, hardening to the point that it feels rubbery to the touch.

  4. Cut away the excess overflowing filler, using a razor blade so that the patch created by the filler is the same level as the tile surface.

  5. Saturate a piece of 600-grit wet/dry sandpaper in water and then sand the patch smooth, taking care not to sand the glazed surface of the ceramic tiles.

  6. Mix a paint color that matches your tile, using acrylic artist's paint. Apply the paint to your patch, using a small paintbrush, and then allow the paint to dry. Sand the dried paint smooth with the wet 600-grit sandpaper to remove brush marks, then wipe the surface with a cloth to remove sanding residue.