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Old 12-11-2008, 09:26 AM   #1
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Can I adhere ceramic tile onto wood


Hi All, I am renovating an old house here in Cairo. Egypt - North Africa. One of the bathrooms needs a make over - but instead we decided to redo the bathtub...I have built the tub in on the sides with wood. I am preparing to apply tile and glass blocks to the wood. Any suggestions that might help me to not make too many mistakes. What should I use to apply the tile to the wood?
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Old 12-11-2008, 09:55 AM   #2
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Can I adhere ceramic tile onto wood


Tile cannot be applied directly to wood, especially in a shower. You need an appropriate substrate, which is normally cement backerboard (wonderboard, durarock, etc). The backerboard must be waterproofed before tile installation as well, or must have a moisture barrier behind it.

You must understand that no tile/grout is completely waterproof, even when sealed. Therefore, the shower must be designed to manage the moisture.

Wood studs are commonplace in walls around showers, but wood itself cannot serve as an adequate substrate for tile.

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Old 12-11-2008, 09:55 AM   #3
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Can I adhere ceramic tile onto wood


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Any suggestions that might help me to not make too many mistakes. What should I use to apply the tile to the wood?
Well you should NOT have wood as the final step. You should be using a cement board. Perhaps you should go to the flooring/tiling or remodeling/kitchen and bath sections. There are some great threads on how to build walls in a wet location. CBU attached with appropriate screws and seams addressed is what you should be doing. Thinset will be your adhesive for the tiles. Perhaps you should consider waterproofing of some sort too.

Remember, wet wood and paper is a food for mold!
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Old 12-11-2008, 09:57 AM   #4
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Once you deal with this wood issue and get your cement backerboard up, be sure to tape the seams with mesh fiberglass tape and fill the joints between the sheets with thinset mortar.

Your tiles must be applied with thinset mortar. Never use mastic (or pre-mixed thinset in my opinion) in a wet area like a shower.
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Old 12-11-2008, 01:11 PM   #5
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Since it is a tub and not a shower I would use thin set and go for it. It is not as good a cement backer board but that may not be available you you there. A little splashing water will not hurt a thing.
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Old 12-11-2008, 02:23 PM   #6
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Since it is a tub and not a shower I would use thin set and go for it. It is not as good a cement backer board but that may not be available you you there. A little splashing water will not hurt a thing.
You're serious???
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Old 12-11-2008, 08:07 PM   #7
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Quickly tell us what brands of thinset and tile backer you have available to you there.
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Old 12-11-2008, 11:39 PM   #8
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Thanks all for your input. I will see what product is available for home use to prepare the wood and the surrounding "structure".

This is the tub which I am attempting to redo. There will be glass blocks that will be creating the wall which will block out the toilet when you can see in through the open door.

Be sure I will be back to ask follow up questions, thanks again.
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Old 12-12-2008, 05:27 AM   #9
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Sure looks like a shower head going up the wall. If it is do not use wood.
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:21 AM   #10
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Can I adhere ceramic tile onto wood


This is a guest bathroom which will actually get very little use. The first couple of weeks will be busy as there is family visiting for Christmas, but after that - the stables outside will be converted into living quarters...more project advice will be sought at that point.

I understand about the mold and moisture damage, but I will seal it as best I can, waterproofing and some sort of mesh to seal it the wood, and then the tiling will follow, and again be sealed with grouting and silicone.

Thanks again. Cheers
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Old 12-12-2008, 10:30 AM   #11
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Um, grout does NOT seal against moisture penetration. By using wood, you are ASKING for trouble.
Last time I'm mentioning this, you need to use cement backer board and THEN you should consider the additional step of waterproofing. By that, I mean a product like Schluter's Kerdi or Custom Building Product's RedGard that goes OVER the CBU before you tile.
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Old 12-12-2008, 01:01 PM   #12
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There is a caulk gun style glue thats called PL-200 that works very good in the outdoors on wood and tile..There are a couple of PL versions and I'm not 100% sure the PL-200 is the one I used..There is a phone number on there product and they will tell you which one is best...Hope this helps
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Old 12-12-2008, 03:03 PM   #13
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There is a caulk gun style glue thats called PL-200 that works very good in the outdoors on wood and tile..There are a couple of PL versions and I'm not 100% sure the PL-200 is the one I used..There is a phone number on there product and they will tell you which one is best...Hope this helps
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Old 12-12-2008, 05:16 PM   #14
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Can I adhere ceramic tile onto wood


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Originally Posted by VA Beach Trimmer
There is a caulk gun style glue thats called PL-200 that works very good in the outdoors on wood and tile..There are a couple of PL versions and I'm not 100% sure the PL-200 is the one I used..There is a phone number on there product and they will tell you which one is best...Hope this helps
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Old 12-13-2008, 01:30 AM   #15
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Hey Guys, thanks again, I am looking at how to seal/H2O proof the wood sub-structure. Maybe I can remove the wood totally and start over with brickwork as the "frame".
Cheers again.

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