Tile Cutter Reviews in the UK: Which is the Best Tile Cutter?

When it comes to tile cutters, there are essentially two major types, the non-electric manual tile cutter, and the electrically-powered one. Here at DIY fidelity, we like to focus on the powered versions of tools so this review of tile cutters will only focus on the most popular power tile cutters on the market today and we'll leave the manual tile cutters for another time. But first, let's delve a little into the various features of electric tile cutters that we need to understand before we can pick the best tile cutter for our needs.

What to look for in a Power Tile Cutter

Blade - Tile cutters come in different shapes and sizes and so do their blades. All tile blades that come with today's consumer electric tile cutters are circular diamond-tipped, continuous blades that range in size from 110mm in diameter and upwards. Another metric to watch out for is the bore hole diameter (the part of the blade that fits over the motor's spindle). The two most common bore hole sizes on today's consumer devices are 22.2mm and 25.4mm.

Water cooling - The majority of power tile cutters incorporate a blade cooling system that usually consists of a reservoir of water located underneath the cutting surface in which the blade is partially submerged. After the blade has moved past the cutting interface it is cooled in the reservoir. At the same time, the water acts partially as a lubricant to facilitate better cutting action. The presence of water around the cutting area also has the added benefit of trapping and reducing the amount of dust that is released into the air when cutting through the rock-like materials of tiles which have the tendency to release a lot of dust when pulverised. Some more expensive tile cutting systems, like bridge saws (which will not be discussed here), use a submersible pump to run water more effectively over the cutting interface.

Picture of a tiled stairway

Angled cuts - Most electric tile cutters will usually provide the option to make mitred cuts so that the edge of a tile can be cut with a bevel. This is useful when tiling over an edge or ledge structure and by bevelling the adjoining edges of the tiles, a better overall finish is obtained.

Depth of cut - Power tile cutters have different sized motors and, for the most part, the higher the wattage or power of the motor, the thicker the tiling material which can be cut with the machine. Different tile types have different thicknesses and knowing the maximum thickness of tile that you are likely to be cutting will determine how powerful (and expensive!) a machine to go for. It is also important to remember that when cutting at an angle (ie. mitred cuts), the blade will actually have to pass through more of the tiling material, therefore the actual perpendicular thickness of a material that a particular machine is rated for cutting should be reduced if it is to be used for tile bevelling.

Portability - Are you moving from job site to job site on a regular basis, or is this just for home DIY use? Once you have determined how you will be using your tile cutter, you will then be in a position to determine your needs with regards to portability. How heavy should it be? Will it fit into the area or vehicle that you will need it to? Does it need a case for protection? and so on...

How easy is it to clean? - Cutting tiles with an electric wet saw is a messy business due to the amount of dust that is generated when a blade passes through ceramic, porcelain or other tile material. Most electric tile cutters these days use water to continuously wet the blade as it is cutting, which lubricates and cools the blade but also traps a lot of the dust. As a consequence, this dust-water suspension gets everywhere on the machine, and one needs to give a little thought about how it will perform at clean-up time. For instance, having a ridged cutting surface rather than a completely flat one can make life more difficult when trying to remove caked-in tile dust.

Popular Electric Wet Tile Cutters in the UK

  
Blade Size
(mm)
Bore Size
(mm)
Mitre angles
Max. Cut Depth at 90°
(mm)
Max. Cut Depth at 45°
(mm)
Power
(Watts)
Table Size
(mm)
Plasplugs DWW100
110
22
45°
20
--
375
400x400**
Plasplugs DWW200
110
22
22.5°
45°
20
20
350
400x400**
Vitrex 103402
110
22
22.5°
45°
25
17
450
365x370**
Plasplugs DWW550
180
22
22.5°
45°
30
--
550
--
Clarke ETC8
180
22.2
0 - 45°
35
22
450
330x360
Rubi ND180
180
--
0 - 45°
35
--
500
395x385
Sealey TC180
180
22
0 - 45°
35
25
500
395x385
Clarke ETC180
180
22.2
0 - 45°
33
24
500
420x400
FERM TCM1010
180
22.2
0 - 45°
34
18
600
330x360
Einhell TC-TC618
180
25.4
0 - 45°
35
22
600
330x360
Vitrex 103430
180
22
22.5°
45°
30
--
650
520x405**
Powerplus POWX230
180
22.2
0 - 45°
34
22
750
420x380
Plasplugs DWW180
180
22
22.5°
45°
27
--
750
570x480**
Erbauer ERB337TCB
180
22.2
22.5°
45°
30
--
750
580x440
Vitrex 103420
180
16 or 22
15°
30°
45°
25
17
750
600x528**
Flexovit TT200EM
200
25.4
0 - 45°
40
20
800
510x400
Blade Size
(mm)
Bore Size
(mm)
Mitre angles
Max. Cut Depth at 90°
(mm)
Max. Cut Depth at 45°
(mm)
Power
(Watts)
Table Size
(mm)
-- information not available
** table size is not exact since dimensions were not available from the manufacturer

Wet Tile Cutter Reviews

Plasplugs Tile Cutters DWW100 and DWW200

Plasplugs Tile Cutter DWW100

DWW100

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Plasplugs Tile Cutter DWW200

DWW200

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​Vitrex Power Tile Cutter 103402

​Vitrex Power Tile Cutter 103402

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Of course, a lower price means that corners have had to be cut and the machine suffers from a few minor issues. One disadvantage with the machine compared to other tile cutters is in the high level of sound it emits when operating, so ear defenders are a must, especially when working for an extended length of time. Another quibble is that adjusting the fence can be a bit tedious since both ends have to be positioned and clamped for accuracy. In addition, due to its low weight, the cutter is also susceptible to being accidentally moved making it necessary to clamp it down to a workbench or similar. The Vitrex tile cutter also suffers from some of the same minor issues that are common to most other basic tile cutters. For instance, watch out not to overfill the water reservoir since, as with many of these consumer machines, it can lead to excessive spraying of water as the blade turns, soaking the operator and everything around it even with the blade guard in place. Unfortunately, not filling the reservoir too much causes a different issue, as the reservoir then needs topping up on a much more regular basis than one might consider convenient.  Another inconvenience with this and with other tile cutters that have 'drainage' channels incorporated into their cutting surfaces are that the channels are susceptible to clogging up with dust from previous tile cuts and cleaning them out can be a tedious process. However, despite these shortcomings, overall for the price, the Vitrex 103402 does get the job done and is great value for money.

​Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL (DWW550) Tile Cutter

​Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL (DWW550) Tile Cutter

Feature-wise, the Pro Tiler XL is a very sturdy machine, easy-to-use, and can be used to cut both wall tiles and larger floor tiles with relative ease. Compared to its smaller sibling known as the Compact Plus XL (DWW200), the Pro Tiler XL has a much better overall design, with more robust fittings such as its well-designed locking guide. The Pro tile cutter also has a larger diameter diamond cutting blade that is able to cut larger format tiles up to a generous 30mm in thickness. This greater cutting capacity comes from a more powerful electric motor which is surprisingly quiet. Like its Plasplugs tile cutter brethren, the DWW550 is able to cut bevels into tiles at both 22.5° and 45°, which is particularly useful when tiling over corners and edges. Other nice features on the DWW550 are the presence of an integral handle as well as integral cable storage makes which transporting the device a breeze.

As with other diamond wheel electric tile cutters, the blade on the Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL is cooled by rotating through a water reservoir located just beneath the table surface which is easily accessible by lifting off the side of the table. Most of the water that comes up from the reservoir on the cutting blade is efficiently recycled back down to the reservoir through the integral channels designed into the surface of the machine, that is of course, if not too big a tile is being cut and obscuring them. To maximise this water recycling, the Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL (like the other Plasplugs tile cutters as well as a few other electric tile cutter brands) has a well positioned water channel going around the entire perimeter of the table which acts as a particularly good mechanism for collecting the water runoff especially when handling larger tiles.

Overall, the Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL DW550 is a very capable electric tile cutter that has been well-designed and includes features that most DIYers and professionals will appreciate. Looks-wise, as with the other Plasplug tile cutters, it has a deceptively toy-like appearance that belies the quite professional nature of the machine, so don’t be too put off by its looks. At the same time, the price for the machine is quite reasonable, so should not be out of anyone’s reach. So if you have some wall or floor tiling to do, then having the Plasplugs Pro Tiler XL at your side is certainly worth its cost.

​Clarke Tile Cutter ETC8

​Clarke Tile Cutter ETC8

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To see the ETC8 tile cutter in action, check out the video from Machine Mart here.

​Rubi Electric Tile Cutter ND180

​Rubi Electric Tile Cutter ND180

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NB: One point of note is that the ND180 model has multiple selling variations and does NOT always come with a carry case nor a spare cutting blade as shown in the video - so do take notice of which variation you are buying!

​Sealey Tile Cutter TC180

​Sealey Tile Cutter TC180

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Overall the machine gets positive reviews, although it does have a couple of niggling issues. First off, the tile guide fence can be a little tedious to slide about and get exactly level, while the thumb screw attachments that secure the fence in place can sometimes suffer from lax manufacturing tolerance. A second quibble that experienced tilers have often complained about is the design of the water reservoir tray. Although it works as it should, when it comes time to close up shop for the day and clean the machine, if the reservoir still contains any water, it can make it difficult to remove the tray without spilling the remaining water all over the place. However, it should be noted that this is not a problem limited to the Sealey TC180 - it is also common to a number of other similar machines reviewed here.

​Clarke Tile Cutter ETC180

​Clarke Tile Cutter ETC180

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Clarke sources machines to bring under its own brand and usually does a reasonable job of ensuring a decent level of quality. However, sometimes manufacturing quality can be a little inconsistent which can be a problem for parts that need to be absolutely accurate. This is the case with the parallel fence which have suffered from manufacturing inconsistencies in the past making it difficult to get it to work properly. In addition, as was the case with the Sealey TC180, a small design flaw has been made with the water reservoir, which cannot be removed easily after it has been filled without spilling the water contained within it. However, this is not such a big problem since the machine tends to empty the reservoir as it is cutting, so there should not be much left in the tank anyway. In addition, the machine has been designed to work in an area where water spillage is not an issue (eg. outside). This is evident by the lack of any attempt to re-capture the run off of water from the cutting surface meaning the water tends to run off in all directions. One final warning with the machine, although some parts are rust-resistant (eg. the table top is chrome-plated), this does not mean, it wont rust, especially as it becomes scratched with regular use. Therefore, it is absolutely essential to dry down the machine throughly once one has finished, to minimise rusting and prolong its life.

​Einhell Tile Cutter TC-TC618

​Einhell Tile Cutter TC-TC618

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The TC-TC618 is certainly a powerful machine and is able to handle almost any tile that is thrown at it cutting up to 35mm thick tiles although the cutting table size is on the small side so external support will have to be provided for bigger tiles. Like other tile cutters for the DIY market, the machine does suffer from a couple of drawbacks, some of which are a bit surprising considering its German pedigree. The most problematic feature is the blade guard bracket which is quite flimsy and can easily work loose after a bit of cutting, not something you want to happen on any sort of table saw. The other problematic feature is the parallel guide rail or fence used to ensure a straight cut. The locking nuts require a lot of effort to tighten so as to ensure the rail does not move, and this also makes ensuring the rail is exactly parallel to the blade a bit of a tedious process. In addition, when it does come time to move the fence again, the over-tightening of the thumb-nuts only makes life just that little bit harder. As with other machines, the water spray over the cutting surface can make for a very messy work environment, and since the machine is not really designed to recapture the water it 'uses' up, one once again has to keep refilling the reservoir every couple of minutes or so - something quite common within this category of electric tile cutter. Overall, a powerful machine for the price but with a couple of shortcomings.

​FERM Tile Cutter TCM1010

​FERM Tile Cutter TCM1010

To aid with cutting accuracy, the FERM tile cutter is equipped with a parallel guide that is bolted down to the tile cutter surface using thumbscrews on either end of the guide, while the surface itself has integrated ‘ruler’ markings to facilitate more accurate tile cutting. As for the accessories side, FERM have included ear plugs and safety goggles with the tile saw, which is a nice touch as it is always nice to get the little accessories that one needs anyway for work using power tools.

Structurally, the FERM tile cutter weighs about 9kg making it quite stable on any work table but it is also designed with brackets that allow it to be bolted down to a benchtop for even more stability. The FERM machine is manufactured in People's Republic of China at the behest of the Dutch company and is actually a very similar machine to the Einhell TC-TC618 (reviewed above), clearly using many of the same parts, and possibly even being manufactured in the same factory. Unsurprisingly then, the FERM machine also suffers from similar niggling issues with the blade guard and the water reservoir as the Einhell tile cutter. Firstly, the opaque blade guard tends to obscure the cutting line so users cannot see exactly where the blade is going through the tile forcing users to rely solely on measurements and the position accuracy of the parallel guide. As for the water reservoir, it is quite small which means that it needs very regular topping up with water and which is exacerbated by the flat chrome cutting surface which is not designed to channel any water splash back into the reservoir.

Overall with the FERM tile cutter, you are getting a very similar machine to similarly-priced Einhell TC-TC618, both of which tend to be mid-level tile cutters which are good for tiling DIY-ers or new professionals that want a decent inexpensive starter machine prior to purchasing something more professional.

​Vitrex Power Tile Cutter 103430

​Vitrex Power Tile Cutter 103430

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​Powerplus Tile Cutter POWX230

​Powerplus Tile Cutter POWX230

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​Plasplugs Tile Cutter DWW180

​Plasplugs Tile Cutter DWW180

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​Erbauer Tile Cutter ERB337TCB

​Erbauer Tile Cutter ERB337TCB

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Unfortunately, however, all is not perfect with the Erbauer tile saw as it has a number of drawbacks that will annoy more avid users of electric tile cutters. First of all, when you first receive the wet saw, a small amount of assembly is required including the installation of the splash / blade guard and the cutting blade, and the instructions provided together with their accompanying pictures are quite poor. Fortunately, the assembly of the machine is quite a straightforward process so it should not be too difficult to figure out on one's own. Once the tile saw is up and running, the first negative that becomes apparent is that the splash / blade guard, which is opaque rather than transparent, gets in the way of visually keeping track of the cutting line. In addition, the laser cutting guide, that should compensate for this inconvenience, is housed within the splash / blade guard which is attached to the wet saw via a flimsy bracket. This means that it can be easily moved out of alignment with any pressure or vibration on the blade guard making the laser light guide pretty much useless. Adding to the inaccuracy, the parallel guide fence and the graduated markings on the main body of the tile cutter used for measurement are also not as accurate as we would have liked, and for truly accurate cuts, one needs to use other external means to exactly line up tiles before any precision cutting is attempted. Another negative with the Erbauer electric tile cutter is with the included cutting blade which is not ideal for cutting porcelain or glazed tiles as it tends to create a rough chipped edge rather than a clean cut. As a consequence, it is recommended to upgrade the blade when cutting these types of tiles in order to produce a nicer looking end result.

Finally, there appears to be some occasional quality-control issues with Erbauer tile cutters as some units have greater manufacturing discrepancies than others, so it can be a bit of a lottery as to how perfect a machine one gets from Screwfix. For instance, several users have observed that the motor can sometimes be not perfectly balanced resulting in the cutting blade oscillating slightly making a less than perfect cut. Alternatively, it has been observed that on occasion the stopper that plugs the reservoir drain hole can be a poor fit sometimes resulting in water leakage which is made worse by the vibrations coming from tile cutting. Fortunately, to remedy these problems, customer service at Screwfix is second to none for exchanging a faulty machine or, in the worst case, getting a refund.

Ultimately, the Erbauer ERB337TCB tile cutter is a better built tile cutter than its more economical competitors but, perhaps unsurprisingly at this price level, it still has a few issues that require a bit of tinkering around to sort out if it is to be used more professionally.

​Norton Clipper (formerly Flexovit) Tile Cutter TT200EM

​Norton Clipper (formerly Flexovit) Tile Cutter TT200EM

The TT200EM is an excellent all-round electric tile cutter that trade professionals swear by but then again that is to be expected with its high price tag. However, when you are working with tiles day-in and day-out, and with what could be expensive tiles, it is important to have the best tools at hand so that tiles are not wasted unnecessarily. As one might expect with a professional tool, it comes with its own carry case which is important to trade professionals who have to carry it around from job site to job site while at the same time keeping it protected. If you are a tiling professional or an aspiring one, the Norton Clipper TT200EM is probably the electric tile saw for you!