How to cut ceramic tile with a glass cutter

Updated February 21, 2017

Ceramic tile is a thin tile commonly used in areas where there is constant moisture. Most ceramic tiles have a glazed surface that keeps the moisture from soaking into and through the tile, to the surface beneath. This glazing can sometimes make the tiles difficult to cut without specialised blades, which prevent the tiles from shattering during the cutting process. You can use a glass cutter to cut ceramic tiles, quickly making straight or curved cuts that allow you to place the tile in a larger variety of locations and patterns.

Place a straightedge on the glazed top of the tile, along the line that you wish to cut.

Hold the straightedge firmly on the tile and drag the carbide point of the glass cutter across the surface of the tile. Press firmly on the cutter so that you score the surface of the tile visibly.

Tape a thin dowel rod onto a flat hard surface.

Place the tile over the dowel rod, with the score on the glass running along the length of the dowel, score side up.

Snap the tile along the scored cut, pressing down on with both halves of the tile over the dowel rod until the tile splits along the scored line.

Create curved lines in the tile using the same general methods. Score a curved line in the top of the tile using the glass cutter.

Hold the larger part of the tile in your hand and grasp the smaller part with pliers.

Apply pressure with the pliers to the tile, snapping the tile along the curved score line.


Wear work gloves and safety goggles when cutting ceramic tiles to keep potential shards and sharp edges from cutting eyes and skin.

Things You'll Need

  • Ceramic tile
  • Glass cutter with carbide tip
  • Duct tape
  • Wooden dowel
  • Breaking pliers
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About the Author

Larry Simmons is a freelance writer and expert in the fusion of computer technology and business. He has a B.S. in economics, an M.S. in information systems, an M.S. in communications technology, as well as significant work towards an M.B.A. in finance. He's published several hundred articles with Demand Studios.