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Old 07-29-2008, 03:10 PM   #1
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Tile Tub surround


I am tiling my tub surround and I would like to take out past the tub about 2.5 inches so there is a barrier so that the wall next to the tub is not getting wet all of the time. I am not planning on tiling all of the walls in the bathroom , so do I put this 2.5 inch strip of tile all the way to the floor or to the top of my baseboards. I am not sure which will look better, having the tile go the top of the baseboard, or having the baseboard run up into the edge of the tile?

Next question, in my shower on the outer edges it runs into 5/8 inch drywall and the backer board I put in was 1/2 inch. So I spackled it to give it a smooth transition. Not realizing that this was a part of the surround that I would be tiling over... I just primed and started mapping out where I would tile and realized this. Should I try to sand it all back down and put mortar on it or would the primed surface be good enough to accept the tile? Any suggestions are welcomed...feel free to joke me, I feel like a complete idiot doing that....plus all those nights sanding an respackling to get the transition nice and smooth were just wasted due to poor planning.

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Old 07-29-2008, 03:45 PM   #2
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If you use Kerdi as your waterproofing, all your problems are solved! Thinset it directly to the wall and then tile over. Make sure you use the proper thinset...unmodified for Kerdi.

As for tile down, if you have wood baseboards already, tile to them. I prefer the use of tile for base molding in wet locations.

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Old 07-29-2008, 04:01 PM   #3
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What is Kerdi?

Let me explain a little better. I used tar paper as a moisture barrier and then hardibacker. I put spackle over the transition from hardibacker to drywall, which has now been primed using Kilz 2...over which I will be tiling over a couple inches of drywall and the transition filled with spackle. I am using 12x12 tiles using a fortified thinset that is supposed to more moisture resistant than normal thinset.

Another question I just thought of...I am going to be using 1/8 inch grout lines and I already bought sanded grout. Should I take it back and get unsanded?
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:35 PM   #4
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Kerdi is a WATERPROOF material. The problem is tile/grout is not impervious to water. Thinset is not impervious to water. Hardi is not impervious to water.
To further make this an issue, since you have a vapor barrier back there now, you can't add another on the room side of the wall. If you tile directly over the drywall compound, it will eventually take on moisture.
I guess at this point you don't want to start over so here's the band-aid: buy a gallon of RedGard and use it where the tile will be placed where there isn't backboard behind. RedGard is a liquid waterproofing material that can be tiled directly over. Caution, even a single gallon is expensive.
Sanded grout for 1/8" is OK as long as the tile you're using won't be scratched from the sand in the grout.

Good luck
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:51 PM   #5
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ok, let me make sure I got it right. Buy redguard (I'm guessing its like paint) put it over my drywall compound portions of the tiled area. Fill in all my joints of the hardibacker with mesh tape and modified thinset (or is unmodified better, I don't see why since that is supposed to have moisture resistant capbilities) , then tile.

Thank You for all of the help
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:02 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by golfer2b View Post
ok, let me make sure I got it right. Buy redguard (I'm guessing its like paint) put it over my drywall compound portions of the tiled area. Fill in all my joints of the hardibacker with mesh tape and modified thinset (or is unmodified better, I don't see why since that is supposed to have moisture resistant capbilities) , then tile.

Thank You for all of the help
Yes, you got it. Let's make a few things clear....
It's RedGard. You might have trouble finding it if not spelled correctly. Yes, it's applied like paint. It's typically carried at Home Depot. The mesh tape you use needs to be alkali resistant. It's different than regular tape used for drywall. Your screws should have been alkali resistant too. In this case, modified thinset is OK. When you use Kerdi, unmodified is spec'd because of the vapor barrier and tile makes the drying time too long for modified use.
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:16 PM   #7
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I would be curious to what what this "moisture resistant" thinset product is that is MORE MOISTURE RESISTANT than regular thinset.. Give us the brand name and product name please. We want to learn too!
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:23 PM   #8
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Bud,
According to the fine gentleman at home depot using the VERSABOND Fortified thinset mortar is more waterproof than using normal thinset mortar...I do not know if this is true, but he sold me on it enough I paid and extra 7 dollars for it. I'm going to the Depot to go purchase Redgard right now to get this started. I called and they said they had it for $40 dollars a gallon...Thats fine with me as long as I don't have to tear down everything I just put up.

Thanks for the help guys
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:31 PM   #9
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Versabond Flex is a quality thinset. You are better off using that than some cheapo $7 stuff. However, when you get the RedGard, slap that associate at HD for telling lies. They'll be easy to find. Look for the person with a long nose.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:14 PM   #10
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Golfer. Could you tell me the address of your Home Depot? I am guessing it is Virginia Bch. But if you could provide which street it would help. Thanks.

I will call Custom to clarify that Versabond is or is not more moisture resistant than standard thinsets.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:19 PM   #11
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According to the fine gentleman at home depot using the VERSABOND Fortified thinset mortar is more waterproof than using normal thinset mortar...
golfer,

That's hilarious! VersaBond is very good product and you'll be fine with it but it is no more "more waterproof" than anything else on the market. In fact thinset IS NOT WATERPROOF in any way. VersaBond is a quality low-end product and well liked around the installation industry.

I'm not sure what has gotten you into thinking any thinset is moistureproof but realistically none of them are.
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Old 07-30-2008, 05:15 PM   #12
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What has gotten me into thinking that mortar may be a little waterproof is the gentleman at home depot. I don't know anything I am trying to fix up my first house and am trying to learn as much as possible, its nice to have good guys like yourselves to talk to about these issues that keep on coming up.

Speaking of issues that have come up that I am unsure of what to do with. I made some lines on my walls where I am going to be tiling and found out that my tub is not level, it is leaning toward the doorway of the bathroom. I put my level on it and it was way off, so when I tried putting some tile above the tub just to see what it looks like and of course is not standing up straight causing me to wonder what to do next. Do leave a bigger gap b/w the tub and tile on the one end toward the doorway and fill it with grout or do I try to cut the tile to go with the slope of the tub....I'm leaning toward cutting the tile because I'm guessing that grout is not completely waterproof making the more grout the susceptible to water damage... Also how much of a gap should be left between the tile and the top of the tub for grouting? Would you caulk over that grouting between the tile and tub too?
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Old 07-30-2008, 05:22 PM   #13
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HomeDepot23,
It is located off of Lynnhaven Pkwy in VA Beach.
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Old 07-30-2008, 05:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
What has gotten me into thinking that mortar may be a little waterproof is the gentleman at home depot.
You can't trust most of those guys to know what the hell they are talking about. Don't ask them anything else. Come to a forum where you get the real poop not some nonsense from a guy that was super-sizing meal deals a few weeks ago.

Quote:
...found out that my tub is not level,
Yow, that's not unusual. Start your tile installation straight and level and one row up from the tub lip. Lower the gap so that you will have to cut each tile at the tub. Install the upper tiles first then go back and cut each of the bottom row tiles to fit the space available leaving a 1/8" gap at the tub.

You don't grout that gap. You caulk it. DON'T grout it then caulk over it. Caulk it only.

Be sure to gauge your bottom row distance so that each tile must be cut. There would be a tendency to use a full tile or two where possible but don't do that, cut each tile or they wont look the same and they won't caulk the same.

Stop asking questions at The Home Depot.
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Old 07-30-2008, 08:13 PM   #15
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Golfer. Thanks. I will send a little e-mail encouraging a PK class.

Bud Cline: Ouch.

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