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Old 08-21-2009, 03:57 PM   #1
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Greenboard - Can someone set me straight on this??!

I've been reading lots of posts on internet forums and talking to various people (DIYers and Pros) and getting conflicting information about Greenboard.

I just installed a Sterling brand Vikrell (acrylic ?) tub/shower surround directly to the studs and was planning on using Greenboard for the 18 or so inches above the thing.

There seems to be tons of controversy surround greenboard and its use in shower areas....? Is the 18" above a surround considered a direct water contact area or can i get by with Greenboard there? Should I use greenboard throughout the bathroom? What about the ceiling? I heard that greenboard can be used on the ceiling with 16" joists if it is 5/8". Can anyone confirm that?

Currently I have unfaced insulation in the wall at the foot of the tub (exterior wall) and was planning on using 5/8" greenboard there (unfaced insulation to prevent a double vapor barrier). The other walls are interior walls and I have kraft faced insulation there (is this correct?).

I also hear there are fiberglass mat enclosed, updated versions of Greenboard available nowadays, but i don't see them at Lowes of Home Depot ....

What's the best way to do this right? Can anyone set me straight???


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Old 08-21-2009, 07:05 PM   #2
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You can not use greenboard in wet locations anymore. The "fiberglass faced" drywall is manufactured by Georgia Pacific and sold as Densarmour and Densarmour Plus. I would recomend installing the densarmour in your bathroom. You will need to skim coat the entire wall before painting.


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Old 08-22-2009, 06:03 PM   #3
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I am having a hard time interpreting what you mean here but will do my best and my apologies in advance:

Currently I have unfaced insulation in the wall at the foot of the tub (exterior wall) and was planning on using 5/8" greenboard there (unfaced insulation to prevent a double vapor barrier). The other walls are interior walls and I have kraft faced insulation there (is this correct?).

I am interpreting this as the wall that is on the end of the tub is an exterior wall correct? I think you are referring to the fact that you used unfaced insulation in this wall because you will be applying poly and do not want to create a dbl VB by the kraft and the plastic. Depending on who you talk to they may or may not consider the kraft facing a vapor barrier but instead will consider it a vapor retarder. It all has to do with the perm rating of the kraft facing and where the categorization of kraft faced insulation falls. My advice to you would be consult local building codes in your area as to what is considered as a vapor barrier and what is not. This would be easily determined by a short conversation with your inspector. You will also probably get many opinions here at this site as to how this situation is construed in each one of the other professionals municipalities. Regardless of the vapor barrier issue you can use any thickness of drywall you want to on this wall. The only caution I have for you is that if you have any doors, windows, outlets, registers etc that would be affected by an extra 1/8" I would caution you against its use. Also if you have this wall stripped and you are going to be placing towel bars, hooks or other items that will be fastened to the wall I would encourage you prior to enclosing the wall to install backing so that you don't have to hunt for studs. Also a really good place to install the backing at a minimum is where the shower rod is going to go. These rods carry a little weight and get a curtain slid back and forth on them day in and day out so a strong anchor is a great idea. The fact that you have kraft faced insulation on the other walls is great because if they are kraft faced and you have stapled the flanges to the framing this will prevent them from sliding down the wall cavity over time.

I hope that my reply along with ARI's helps you determine what is your best path to follow. Also my interpretation is what works in my municipality but may not work in yours so make sure that if you have any questions and they are permit related that you check your local building code or check with your local building officials to ensure the accuracy of the information you have been provided.

Good luck to you, be safe and it this experience will be a rewarding one, once you are done, lol.

Take care!
James D. Van Raden
Owner, Paragon Renovations Moorhead, MN/ Fargo, ND
"Committed to providing the finest renovation services available"

Last edited by Paragon; 08-22-2009 at 06:04 PM. Reason: spelling errors
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Old 08-29-2009, 09:00 AM   #4
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Don't waste your money on greenboard. Regular drywall with proper paint will do as well. The Densarmour ARI mentioned is a good product if you're concerned about moisture. As stated, it will require a "glaze" coat of the entire surface, but that ensures a good finish anyway. Regular 1/2" will work on the ceiling on 16" centers as long as there is proper ventilation and, again, appropriate paint is used.....
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