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chrispy35 11-04-2009 01:35 AM

So many questions - tub installation, floor tiles, subfloor...
Hi there,

Just starting a complete reno of our ensuite and I'm learning as I go... :)

Tub/Floor Tiles
I have to replace the tub (old one was cracked along the edge) and am replacing the floor as well. We are planning on a tub with an apron rather than a drop-in as we didn't like the look of our old drop-in tub. When I visualize where the tub apron meets the tiles, it seem like it would be a nicer edge to tile first (to cover a little under the tub edge) and then mount the tub over the tiles. Is this OK to do or should the tub always be mounted first and then the floor tiled up to the edge of the tub?

Old Subfloor Removal
The old subfloor is quite a mess after the old tiles were pulled up. What is the best way to remove the old subfloor while getting as close to the walls as possible. I've seen recommendations to use a circular saw with depth set to the subfloor thickness but that would seem to me to leave quite a large strip of the old subloor around the wall edges. Do people just normally leave that old strip around the edges or is there some other technique to get the old subfloor out with less clearance to the walls required?

I'm sure there will be many more questions to come I'm sure but any answers/suggestions on the above questions would be very much appreciated.


Chris P.

Scuba_Dave 11-04-2009 07:27 AM

I've installed the tub 1st then tiled at both houses so far
With tile under the tub it would be a pain to removed & redo the tile

I just left the old sub-floor near the walls
Adding a 2x for support may be needed depending upon joists

RDS 11-04-2009 10:39 AM

I agree with Dave about the tub-tile joint. I don't think I'd be comfortable with the tub apron (esp if cast iron), plus the weight of water, plus person bearing down on the edge of a row of tile. In theory it shouldn't crack if the structure under it is sound, but I'd worry.

For cutting the subfloor flush to the bottom plates of the walls, don't they sell small wood-cutting blades for angle grinders? I may be wrong about this. I know they sell them for cutting masonry, tile, etc. The one time I dealt with this problem I just used a flush-cut saw (hand tool) flat against the side of the bottom plate, but that was tedious and, in retrospect, probably not necessary.

chrispy35 11-04-2009 03:17 PM

Thanks guys, the issue of the weight on the tiles and possibly cracking also occurred to me so I appreciate very much the extra opinions on the matter. Tub first it is.

Dave, when you say 'adding a 2x support,' do you mean a 2 second layer of plywood over the subfloor? I've seen this mentioned before and it's probably a good idea in this case as the old tiles cracked along a seam in existing subfloor. What I wonder though is how people deal with the extra thickness of the floor at the transition to the bedroom? Is there a good-looking way to handle that difference?


Chris P.

Mop in Hand 11-10-2009 11:18 PM

Another reason to place the tub in first, so that it can be leveled. This is important if you are going to be tiling the walls. More often than not your floor will not be level. If your tub is not level the more difficult it is to tile the walls. If the tub needs to be shimmed up in front, installing the floor tiles after should cover the line of sight along the apron.

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