Are Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Waterproof? Read This Before Installing Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles in High-Humid Areas!

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Renovating the house by tiling the walls and floor with self-adhesive tiles will reduce the overall cost. At a minimum price, you can enhance the look of your home. Most peel-and-stick tiles are made of vinyl.

These tiles are installed in different places in the house, like the bathroom, hallway, kitchen, etc. It is necessary to know whether these tiles are waterproof before installing them in the bathroom.

Suppose you are also wondering whether these tiles are waterproof. This blog is for you!

Self-adhesive vinyl tiles are waterproof as they are made from multiple vinyl layers. Hence, installing these tiles in a humid environment is safe, as they are resistant to water and moisture. However, prolonged exposure to water will make the water seep through the gaps and damage the substrate. Covering the holes with sealant will prevent water penetration.

Self-Adhesive Tiles

Self Adhesive Tiles
Self Adhesive Tiles

Self-adhesive tiles come with an adhesive backing, so you don’t have to apply additional tile adhesive to stick them. You can peel the backing and stick the tiles to the substrate.

In case the stick-on tiles do not adhere firmly to the wall or subfloor, it is better to use additional adhesive. There are different materials, like glass, metal, and vinyl, from which the manufacturer makes self-adhesive tile.

The most common option is the vinyl self-adhesive tile made from multi-layer vinyl. The durability of these tiles is approximately five to twenty-five years.

The lifespan of your self-adhesive tiles will change according to how they are maintained, their quality, the traffic on them, etc.

Compared to the traditional tiling option, these peel-and-stick tiles are cheap. They cost around $1 to $5 per square foot. Self-adhesive tiles come in a wide range of colors and patterns so that you can match them with the interior design of your house.

Is Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles WaterProof

Is Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles WaterProof
Is Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles WaterProof

Most of the peel-and-stick vinyl tiles are waterproof. Not all self-adhesive vinyl tiles have the waterproof characteristic; hence, it is essential to verify this before purchasing. Using these tiles in various parts of your house is possible. Therefore, you must select the right tile with suitable properties according to the place.

Especially when choosing self-adhesive vinyl tiles for the bathroom, you must ensure they are waterproof. High-quality vinyl tiles respond well in humid areas as they are water-resistant.

It is also essential to know that leaving water on these tiles for a prolonged period is not recommended, as it can penetrate through the gaps.

When the water enters through the holes of the installed self-adhesive vinyl tiles, the subfloor or wall will eventually get damaged.

Following are a few things that you can do to avoid water penetrating through the gaps:

  • Water infiltration can be protected by adding an ideal underlayment between the subfloor and the self-adhesive tiles.
  • Filling in the gaps with a sealant will make the self-adhesive tile installation waterproof and prevent water penetration.
  • It is best to clean the spilt water as soon as possible without leaving it for too long.

Where Can You Install Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles?

Where Can You Install Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles
Where Can You Install Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles

You can install self-adhesive tiles in various places in the house.

Since most of these tiles are water resistant, it is possible to lay them in humid areas. You can use them in the kitchen, bathroom, on walls, backsplashes, etc. Choosing the right self-adhesive tiles that are suitable for the place you are installing will ensure durability.

When laying self-adhesive tiles in high-humid areas, it is better to get professional help from an expert to choose the best-quality waterproof stick-on tiles.

Recommend Surfaces to Install Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles

Following are a few surfaces on which you can install these peel-and-stick tiles. 

  • Linoleum wall
  • Wallpaper
  • Mirror
  • Glass tiles
  • Ceramic tiles
  • Painted gypsum wall
  • Flat panels

Unsuitable Surfaces for Installing Self-Adhesive Tiles

Besides the suitable surfaces, a few surfaces or substrates are not recommended for installing self-adhesive tiles. Following are a few of them:

  • Unfinished plastered or gypsum wall
  • Stucco wall
  • Brick wall
  • Unpainted plywood
  • Stonewall
  • Any uneven surfaces

Important: Self-adhesive tiles are best for walls, backsplashes, and low-traffic floors. If you install these tiles in high-traffic areas, purchasing high-quality tiles that withstand traffic is better.

Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Maintenance

Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Maintenance
Self Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Maintenance

Maintenance is a crucial factor that directly impacts the longevity of peel-and-stick tiles. Follow the instructions below when cleaning the self-adhesive vinyl tile flooring.

  • At least once a week, sweep the peel-and-stick flooring. Reach underneath the furniture and clean the surface well.
  • Fill a bucket with water and mix it with some mild detergent (you can mix one tablespoon of detergent for one gallon of water). Soak the mop in the soap water and wring it well before mopping the tiles.
  • After the mopping, the tiles must air-dry quickly. If the stick-on tiles are wet, use a towel to dry the floor. This will prevent water from penetrating through the gaps.

Note: Do not drag the furniture when cleaning the floor because it can cause scratching and gouging. Instead, you can use felt furniture or plastic sliders underneath the future legs.


Now you might understand whether self-adhesive vinyl tiles are waterproof. Most stick-on vinyl tiles are waterproof.

Installing high-quality vinyl tiles in the bathroom is best, as they are water and moisture-resistant.

However, leaving water on the surface of peel-and-stick tiles will make the water penetrate through the gaps of these tiles.

As a result, the adhesive will weaken and damage the subfloor. Hence, you must keep the self-adhesive flooring dry and wipe off any water spills.

You can use sealant to fill the gaps and improve the waterproof nature of the self-adhesive tiles.


Do Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Need Tile Adhesive When Installing Them Into the Substrate?

Since the self-adhesive tile has an adhesive backing, you can peel off the backing and stick it directly to the subfloor or wall.

If the adhesive does not firmly bond the tiles to the substrate, it is better to use additional glue.

Can I Use Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tile For Tiling The Bathroom?

Yes, most self-adhesive vinyl tiles are waterproof, so you can use them to tile the bathroom.

When tiling high-humid places like bathrooms, check the instruction manual or ask an expert to choose the type of stick-on tiles.

Are Self-Adhesive Vinyl Tiles Heat Resistant?

Yes, there are heat-resistant and oil-resistant vinyl tiles.

Not all self-adhesive vinyl tiles are oil-resistant, so you must verify this before purchasing.

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About Charlie D Paige

Charlie is a massive DIY fan, with dozens of DIY projects under his belt - ranging from tiling to electrics, and concrete pads to walls. Charlie loves tinkering, seeing how things works, the outdoors and playing with power tools... so is it any wonder that he's completed so many DIY jobs over the years?

Charlie loves spreading his hard-won DIY experience with the world via this blog.