I am renovating my 22 year old hall bath and when I tore out the tiles and board, I realized they had built the tub/shower walls by using drywall and the putting cement board over the drywall where the tiles would go. This also "built” up the wall for the tile so they were raised slightly above the rest of the wall. Is this common? Should I replace the same way or would it be better to leave the wall flat and retile without them being “raised”?
It seems somewhat unnecessary to put cement board over drywall just to have a raised look.
Yup, in Texas it is. In fact Texas is the only place I have ever done that type of thing.
It doesn't have to be done that way tho. To do it that way would require a special tile to make the bends around the cement boards and even tho that type of tile is still around there aren't very many colors or textures to chose from. It may even be a "dated" look these days. I know I haven't seen or used the stuff since I left Texas eighteen years ago.