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Old 09-15-2011, 02:16 PM   #1
Mike K
 
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Tile or fiberglass in a rental.


With the kids moving out soon, we have decided to rent the house out. We need to update the bathrooms and Im trying to decide if we should do tile or fiberglass enclosures. I know tile is better.. But renters wont dry them out and Im worried I will end up with mold and mildew in the grout lines etc. Then again.. fiberglass wont fare to well neglected either. What would you decide to install for a bullet proof bathroom.

Thanks
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Old 09-15-2011, 05:06 PM   #2
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Tile with epoxy grout or the new urethane grout would be the first choice--Tile with conventional grout would be the second choice.

I would not consider a fiberglass surround even for your own house.

In five years the fiberglass surround will no longer look new. Ceramic will look new for many years.

Also consider a cast iron tub----long life there ,too.---Mike---

(land lord for many years--tile is the way to go)
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Old 09-22-2011, 01:33 AM   #3
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Fiberglass fan


I'm also a long-time landlord (26 years). I have 25 apartments, some with cast iron tubs with tile surrounds and some with fiberglass tubs and surrounds.

In my experience, the tile surrounds do not suffer tenants' abuse well. Some tenants never clean their grout and it becomes nearly impossible to clean; some break tiles, don't tell you, and water leaking behind the tiles leads to more problems; and matching new tiles to old tiles for repair is invariably a problem. I still have tile surrounds that look awful but just haven't bitten the bullet yet to spring for a tile guy to come in and totally re-do the tile surrounds (making it right will require a total tear-out, new backer-boarding, and a new tile job).

On the other hand, the fiberglass tubs and surrounds I have all, while maybe not looking new, at least age in color consistently and have been fairly easy to clean even when left in a filthy condition (rarely, thank goodness). In 26 years I have had to repair two holes in the fiberglass and two fiberglass bottoms that cracked. In each case a professional made repairs that were invisible. How he matched the color to 20+ year old fiberglass I'll never know, but he did.

That's why I prefer the fiberglass, but I guess everyone has different experiences. Plus, as you can tell from what I just wrote, I'm not a guy that's willing (or able) to tackle either type of repair job. If you're proficient in tile repair, tile may be for you. Fiberglass repair, on the other hand, is best left to a fiberglass repair professional, in my opinion.
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Old 09-22-2011, 07:23 AM   #4
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Thanks guys. I will be using a kerdi shower kit, large format solid porcelain tile and epoxy grout. Even if the tile broke it shouldn't leak. The home is in a high end neighborhood so I don't want to skimp.

Thanks again.
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