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Old 04-20-2010, 11:03 AM   #1
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


I'll be using under-cabinet wall tiling in my kitchen remodeling, and I have a couple questions.

Question 1: Is it required to use a backerboard when putting up wall tile, or can the tile be stuck directly to drywall? If so, how thick should the backerboard be?

Question 2: What is the best way to transition from the point where the wall tile stops and the painted wall of the rest of the room begins? I figure the thickness of the backerboard and tile will be around 1/2", so I'm wondering how best to merge the tile and the painted areas so it looks nice.

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Old 04-20-2010, 02:55 PM   #2
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


you can stick it to the drywall, but thats the easy way. For the most rigidity, backerboard is your best bet. It flexes less and is less prone to environmental variables, moisture, mold, etc. In my opinion it's worth the extra time and few bucks, nothing worse than watching your nice new tile job start breaking up a few months later. Thickness is relative to how thick the adjacent drywall is, how far out you want the tile to be, etc.

For the transition point, this can vary depending on what kind of tile you use. Some deisgns have edging pieces available that are rounded off on one side for a nice clean edge. You could always do a thin wood trim to match your cabinets, or simply identify some of the better looking tiles with clean edges and use them with a tight grout line.

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Old 04-20-2010, 03:03 PM   #3
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


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Originally Posted by chenzarino View Post
Thickness is relative to how thick the adjacent drywall is, how far out you want the tile to be, etc.
I'll be using 1/2" drywall, so can I assume correctly that 1/4" backerboard will work just fine? I don't really want the tile to stick out that far.
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:19 PM   #4
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


should work, also remember you'll have an additional 3/16" or so of depth with the thinset.

Last edited by chenzarino; 04-20-2010 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 04-20-2010, 07:41 PM   #5
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


chenzarino,
Where the heck are you getting all that nonsense? You are going to cause that person to throw away dollars needlessly and end up with a substandard job on top of it. Thinset WILL NOT be 3/16" thick either.
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Old 04-20-2010, 07:55 PM   #6
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


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chenzarino,
Where the heck are you getting all that nonsense? You are going to cause that person to throw away dollars needlessly and end up with a substandard job on top of it. Thinset WILL NOT be 3/16" thick either.
OK, Bud. What's your recommendation for all this?
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Old 04-20-2010, 08:06 PM   #7
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


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chenzarino,
Where the heck are you getting all that nonsense? You are going to cause that person to throw away dollars needlessly and end up with a substandard job on top of it. Thinset WILL NOT be 3/16" thick either.
please elaborate. how is suggesting to use wonderboard instead of drywall throwing away dollars and making it substandard? I gotta hear this one.
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Old 04-22-2010, 09:27 PM   #8
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


There is no reason to change-out the wall board. That's a lot of work (if done correctly) and for no good reason. "WASTE OF MONEY".

To install cement board on top of the existing wall is stupid and creates problems with finishing the edges of the new board. How is that going to be addressed? If mud caps are the thinking, it isn't very likely any of those things will match any of today's tiles. Mud caps are available only in limited supply and all have that public restroom look to them. The raw edges of the cement board would be "SUBSTANDARD" to say the least. You won't find that procedure in any of the tile books.

Cement board IS NOT stronger than wallboard and it DOES NOT FLEX LESS than wallboard. THAT is in all the tile books.

Wall tile on a kitchen backsplash isn't going to crack simply because it was installed over the existing wallboard. THAT'S just plain wrong. The issues that crack tiles will crack tiles on cement board too but that isn't at all likely on a kitchen backsplash wall. That possibility is moot in this case.

Thinset used in this application will never be 3/16" thick unless the wrong trowel is being used.

Install the tile on the existing wall, use mastic and be done with it. It's just that simple! Transitions to paint can be dressed using bullnose tile or a metal tile edge for a finished look. This is really simple and inexpensive
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Last edited by Scuba_Dave; 04-22-2010 at 11:05 PM. Reason: removed comments
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:24 PM   #9
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


I've looked up this info in other places, and it just gets frustrating with so many contradictory suggestions. I'm completely starting from scratch with this kitchen, down to the bare studs, so Bud, if you're suggesting tiling directly over drywall, should I use greenboard on those areas, or will regular drywall work? I'm looking at this solely from a moisture perspective. I can see an instance where moisture has somehow actually made it through the grout and mastic and got on the paper of the drywall, which in my mind would start to loosen that paper. That seems like a reason to use the concrete backerboard over the drywall. However, I can also see that if the mastic was applied correctly over the drywall, and all spaces between tiles have been properly grouted and sealed, no water should ever get in.

Another question just came to mind: instead of hanging drywall in those areas that'll get tiled, do people using concrete board instead.....just screwing the concrete board directly to the studs?

I would love not having to use concrete board on top of drywall if there's absolutely no reason to use it, but I don't want my hard work to disintegrate. I think I'm giving myself a headache.
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:35 PM   #10
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


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Originally Posted by sbazzle View Post
I'll be using 1/2" drywall, so can I assume correctly that 1/4" backerboard will work just fine? I don't really want the tile to stick out that far.
If I understand his project correctly, he needs to use 1/2" backerboard if he has 1/2" drywall. Replace the drywall with backer board in the tile area so that the seam between the two materials will be about an inch smaller that the tile layout, then the tile will hide the seam. If he applies 1/4" backer board on top of the existing sheetrock, as I think this suggests, the edge of the backer will show. If he wants to just apply backer on top of the drywall instead of inset it, he will need to use 1/2" board and be limited to a tile selection that offers trim pieces known as "mud caps" which have a deep enough return to hide the backer board.

IMO , it always loooks nicest to band the tiled area with a nice bull nose trim or full size bull nosed tiles, but unfortunatley most tile selections do not have matching trim pieces available, so you have to do as suggested and select pieces with the nicest edge for these locations.

Having said all this, I agree with Bud Cline. There is nothing improper about using mastic to set tiles directly to the existing sheetock for a kitchen back splash. It is not a wet area like a shower stall or tub/shower combination. I don't know who ever started the fallacy that cement board is used to stiffen the substrate for a tile job, it is just a glorified isolation membrane/bonding surface for thinset.

Last edited by troubleseeker; 04-22-2010 at 10:45 PM.
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:38 PM   #11
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
There is no reason to change-out the wall board. That's a lot of work (if done correctly) and for no good reason. "WASTE OF MONEY".

To install cement board on top of the existing wall is stupid and creates problems with finishing the edges of the new board. How is that going to be addressed? If mud caps are the thinking, it isn't very likely any of those things will match any of today's tiles. Mud caps are available only in limited supply and all have that public restroom look to them. The raw edges of the cement board would be "SUBSTANDARD" to say the least. You won't find that procedure in any of the tile books.

Cement board IS NOT stronger than wallboard and it DOES NOT FLEX LESS than wallboard. THAT is in all the tile books.

Wall tile on a kitchen backsplash isn't going to crack simply because it was installed over the existing wallboard. THAT'S just plain wrong. The issues that crack tiles will crack tiles on cement board too but that isn't at all likely on a kitchen backsplash wall. That possibility is moot in this case.

Thinset used in this application will never be 3/16" thick unless the wrong trowel is being used.

Install the tile on the existing wall, use mastic and be done with it. It's just that simple! Transitions to paint can be dressed using bullnose tile or a metal tile edge for a finished look. This is really simple and inexpensive.
For starters, they said they were redoing the kitchen entirely, new wall and all, not changing out the wall board.

Second, I never said to put wonderboard over the drywall

Third, sbazzle's concern of the paper peeling up is valid, I dont care what you say.

Fourth, I made the same suggestion of using bullnose tile, so way to reinforce my suggestion.

Last edited by Scuba_Dave; 04-22-2010 at 11:06 PM. Reason: removed comments
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:44 PM   #12
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


It would be a very rare fluke when one could get enough water on a kitchen backsplash to damage anything below the tile. This isn't a tub/shower, it's a decorative backsplash.

If it makes you feel better to use "moisture resistant drywall" then by all means do so but it isn't at all necessary.

Once tiled and grouted you could even seal the grout if you want to but the cement board IS NOT necessary in this application.

If you are still paranoid, then install the drywall and paint it with liquid waterproofing. Mapei HPG, Custom Redgard, Laticrete Product 9235, any of those are readily available and are great products.

I understand about your confusion, that's what the Internet does. I get tired of it myself.

One more time...tiles will not crack because they weren't applied to cement board, that is just plain ignorance to say they will.
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Last edited by Scuba_Dave; 04-22-2010 at 11:07 PM. Reason: removed comments
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Old 04-22-2010, 11:03 PM   #13
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


I'll post the same thing I just posted on another thread:

A few choices here everyone

1) Keep posting sarcastic responses/name calling & find your posting priveleges Suspended

2) Assist the person

3) Don't post


Make the right decision or I'll make the decision
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Old 04-22-2010, 11:10 PM   #14
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


In this instance, I'm quite thrilled that I'm such a newbie at kitchen remodeling, because it really helps me work out the kinks and get the right information I need.

So to avoid mixing people's ego with information and calming this thread down a little, and to be fair to Bud, I never did mention at the beginning of this post that I was starting from scratch at the bare studs. That fact might have helped filter the answers a bit. Sorry about that. This is just about as complete a kitchen remodel as you can get.

It looks like the one answer I need from all this is when I start drywalling, should I use concrete board against the studs in the areas that will be tiled, or just drywall EVERYTHING and be done with it?
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Old 04-22-2010, 11:16 PM   #15
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Two Questions about Kitchen Wall Tile


I'm no expert, only 1 backsplash so far at my last house
I used reg primed drywall, this was not the area near the sink
Cement board has more flex from what I have seen VS drywall
I would never put only cement board on a wall instead of drywall
But I have only seen 2 types of cement board...might be more ?

If you are going corner to corner & only 1 wall then the CB will not stick out
IE you won't see the edges of the CB since tile goes right to the wall

I might be more worried behind a sink...based on the way my wife & son splash water around

Installation can depend upon the tile & your specific layout
One wall, 2 walls....3 ?
Floor to ceiling cabinets anywhere ?
4" tiles...?

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