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Old 11-13-2013, 02:42 PM   #1
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


I have to access the wall cavity behind a tub/shower to repair a valve leak.

The bottom side is of course the tub, the top portion is all 12"x12" porcelain tiled. No access from the other side of the wall as it's my neighbor's space.

I do not have any spare tiles, previous owner did not leave any spare nor remember where her tile man bought them.

So, my plan is to use an oscillating tool with a grout removal blade, to carefully cut all the way around a piece of the 12"x12" tile, then cut the supporting wall board behind it the same way, and remove the whole thing in one piece without damaging the tile. Make my repair, then I will have to glue some backing strips around the perimeter of the square hole, then glue the piece of tiled wall back on and regrout.

The only issue I see is, I am not quite sure when cutting the piece out, once I make it through the grout around the tiles, how do I cut the cement board behind it? I don't think the grout blade would work, even if it could, it's not deep enough to cut the total thickness of tile PLUS cement board..

Is there a way to plunge cut the cement board with a special blade? Somehow I have a feeling even if one is available, it will take forever.

I have a 4.5" angle grinder, may be a diamond blade will cut most of it but when it gets to the corner I don't want to overcut. How about a sawzall with a carbide blade will that work if I start a slot with the ginder?

Trying to figure out the best way to cut the cement board with minimum dust and quickest. If that is possible.

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Old 11-13-2013, 02:54 PM   #2
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


There is going to be dust no matter how you do it. Just run a shop vac at the same time.
Not likely the way your trying to do it is going to work so come up with a plan B.
A Roto Zip with a tile bit will go right through it.

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Old 11-13-2013, 03:00 PM   #3
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


Unless your tile spans two studs (which it might), you will have difficulty getting your piece out due to nails/screws.
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Old 11-13-2013, 06:42 PM   #4
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
There is going to be dust no matter how you do it. Just run a shop vac at the same time.
Not likely the way your trying to do it is going to work so come up with a plan B.
A Roto Zip with a tile bit will go right through it.
Rotozip won't work because the bit size is larger than the tile spacing. That's why I am thinking of using a grout removal blade so I can work my way through the grout even if it takes a bit more time. Now I could just use a diamond blade with my grinder but my past experience is the diamond blade when cutting kicks up so much dust and with me wearing safety glasses and a dust mask, I may easily cut a bit off and end up slicing through the edge of the tile.
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Old 11-13-2013, 06:43 PM   #5
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


Quote:
Originally Posted by djlandkpl View Post
Unless your tile spans two studs (which it might), you will have difficulty getting your piece out due to nails/screws.
hmmm...good point. If that's the case I will end up breaking the cement board by brute force which most likely break the tiles too. Well, plan B I guess.
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:58 PM   #6
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Plunge cut cement board - or not?


Which valve is leaking? Usually, you can access valves through the escucheons. Pics might help.

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