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Old 01-26-2014, 08:11 PM   #1
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


Hi,

I am remodeling my shower area and I am down to the studs. I was considering using Hardibacker, but have heard that Densshield is easier to use. In the past, I have found Wonderboard messy and difficult to trim. I have two questions.

First, I am trying to make smooth transition from my backer to sheetrock…what is the best way to make up the 1/8” thickness difference between the 5/8” sheetrock and the 1/2” backer material. I was considering using 3/8” OSB behind 1/4 “ Hardi.

Second, which is better to use? Hardi or Densshield. I will be rolling on a waterproof membrane over either.

Thanks,

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Old 01-26-2014, 08:47 PM   #2
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


Hi Flypaper,

Why do you think the drywall is 5/8"? They don't usually use fire-rated for bathrooms, it usually separates the attached garage from the living quarters. Having said that, by the time the 1/2" wallboard is glued and screwed and then several layers of primer and paint it is thicker than 1/2". But............

You are not supposed to use 1/4" cbu for walls. !/2" backer is for walls and makes for the best transition to wallboard. BTW, Hardiebacker 500 (1/2") is less than 1/2". Denshield is 1/2" as are most other 1/2" boards.

Quote:
I will be rolling on a waterproof membrane over either.
Hope not, Denshield already has a plastic face, you can apply it to the fastener & seams though.

How will the floor be built? Is it a tiled floor or a fiberglass pan? How you build the floor and how it interfaces with the wall and especially the curb is the important part, the walls are a piece of cake.

Jaz

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Old 01-26-2014, 09:11 PM   #3
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


I like the densshield for everything.

You can get it in 5/8" if you buy it from a non-big box store. Try a commercial drywall supply house. They'll also have it in 4x8 sheets if that is of any use to you. 32x60" doesn't always work well for me. The 4x8's are more expensive per sq. ft., but it is minimal.
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Old 01-26-2014, 09:37 PM   #4
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


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Originally Posted by JazMan View Post
Hi Flypaper,

Why do you think the drywall is 5/8"? They don't usually use fire-rated for bathrooms, it usually separates the attached garage from the living quarters. Having said that, by the time the 1/2" wallboard is glued and screwed and then several layers of primer and paint it is thicker than 1/2". But............

Hope not, Denshield already has a plastic face, you can apply it to the fastener & seams though.

How will the floor be built? Is it a tiled floor or a fiberglass pan? How you build the floor and how it interfaces with the wall and especially the curb is the important part, the walls are a piece of cake.

Jaz
I will have to measure it again to be sure it isn't 1/2". You may be correct. I was making an assumption from experience hanging sheetrock in an office building.

I had to remove a tub and replace moldy flooring where water had slipped between the tile and the lip of the tub. The shower floor will be tile with a sanded mortar under and over a liner, both sloped at 1/4 per foot. I am also mudding the curb. I did it that way about 20 years ago and worked out pretty well. Its just a little work to get the slope right. I appreciate the advice. Am I correct that I leave a small gap between the backer board and the floor?...and filling the gap when grouting? Also, I am using a product called Hydro Ban...kind of like RedGuard.

Last edited by Flypaper; 01-26-2014 at 09:40 PM.
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Old 01-27-2014, 02:11 PM   #5
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


So, you're converting a tub enclosure to a shower or does the bathroom already have both?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flypaper
Am I correct that I leave a small gap between the backer board and the floor?...and filling the gap when grouting?
No, No, that's all wrong if I understand what you're saying.

Are you doing a pre-slope under the shower pan membrane? Hope so if you're using the traditional method. So, make the slope, install the membrane, then you install the backer board leaving about 1/2" gap above the membrane. Then the final deck mud is placed which will lock the bottom of the board in place since you do not fasten it near the bottom.

You should not be filling any inside corners, changes of plane or dissimilar materials with grout, use matching caulk.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flypaper
Also, I am using a product called Hydro Ban...kind of like RedGuard.
Hydroban is probably better than Redgard.....maybe?

Have you looked at how or considered building a Kerdi shower? If you want a waterproof-watertight shower, that's what I recommend.

Jaz
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:52 PM   #6
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


Yes, I am converting a tub enclosure to a shower. Attached are the before and now photos. I still have to block the bottom and put in a curb before I start.

Like you said, I am mudding the base at a slope and then putting in a liner. I will mud over the liner for the tile deck. I have heard of the Kerdi kit. A contractor friend of mine told me he uses it all the time because, even at $400 for the kit, it saves him a day on the job. I used to be in the on-site waste water industry and an old business associate of mine who works for a Supply place sent me a Pre-pitch and curb kit. He also gave me contractor’s price for the Moen fixtures, Hydro Ban, Better Bench, shelf, and nitch. He owed me for helping him with the waste water systems for so many years. I’m not in a hurry and the price of the mud is far less expensive than the Kerdi Kit.


Thank you for the advice on the transition from the pan to the wall backer. I have heard a few opinions on that. My contractor friend showed me pictures of a repair he did where the original contractor put plastic behind the wallboard. The wallboard soaked up the moister causing mold and discoloration of the grout. When he repaired it, he coated the entire thing with membrane. Everything in the picture was red from the Redgard before he tiled it. He told me that coating the floor was just a precaution, but it really wasn’t necessary because of the liner being in place. I don’t know if Hydro Ban is better. The Hydro Ban is just a different version of the Redgard. I know it is used on tile pools and will fill gaps without needing to use mesh.

You were correct about the drywall being 1/2”. I will be using Durock because the other backer board isn’t available in my area. I have used Wonderboard before and hate working with it. That leaves me with a choice of Hardi or Durock. I think the Durock is a bit lighter and on sale at the moment so I am going with that. I’m not cheap, just thrifty.
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?-img_20140115_120353_557-1-.jpg   Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?-img_20140127_142850_907-1-.jpg  

Last edited by Flypaper; 01-27-2014 at 05:57 PM.
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Old 01-27-2014, 06:24 PM   #7
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


You do not need to buy the Kerdi kit to use Kerdi. I admit you do pay a lot for the presloped base and drain assembly. Build the pan yourself and put up drywall and Kerdi over everything.
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Old 01-27-2014, 06:49 PM   #8
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


Lets back up a bit.

In the order of things let me clarify something. If you use Denshield or Hardie, you are not supposed to bury the boards into the deck mud. This makes it very difficult to build a solid shower. Refer to the Denshield installation instructions and we can also clarify further.

I think this is a good reason not to use Denshield or Hardie for shower walls. I think using a "real" concrete backer so that the bottom can be buried into the top deck mud so it can be held in place is the way to go.

Of course most would agree that the best way to build a shore is to waterproof using a surface waterproofing method. Why allow the deck mud to become saturated with shower water in the first place. That has proven to not be desirable.

I chuckle when mentioning Kerdi system and you said;

Quote:
A contractor friend of mine told me he uses it all the time because, even at $400 for the kit, it saves him a day on the job.
I think that's backwards. It probably takes an extra $300-400 and an extra day to build a watertight Kerdi shower. You gotta do all the same steps and then install the fabric, instead of no fabric. The Kerdi Drain is well worth the extra $100-125 in cost and extra labor.

You can't compare the two systems. If done right both work well, but only the surface membrane shower is waterproof.

Jaz
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Old 02-05-2014, 08:38 PM   #9
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Hardibacker or Densshield for shower?


Pros, do not allow this forum to use your reputation to make it appear as you are endorsing advertised products. They should not place ads within your posts.

Jaz

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