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Thread: Bath tub/shower remodel

  1. #1

    Default Bath tub/shower remodel

    I currently have a tub/shower combo with an OLD fiberglass surround. I have a 3 handle bath/shower faucet, and a sliding glass door. (Just trying to paint a picture for everyone).

    I am going to demo the surround, and take it to bare studs. The tub is staying and the glass door will be installed after the remodel. I have a new single handle faucet with a new rough in valve to match. I am planning on installing new 12"x 12" ceramic tiles. Here are my questions...

    1. Anything is particular I should know before changing out the old valve for the new valve? I've never installed/removed a shower valve so I'm clueless.

    2. Over the bare studs I'm planning on using hardibacker board, is this okay or do I need greenboard under it? Or is durrock better?

    3. In using hardibacker is it better to use mastic or mortar to lay the tiles? Everywhere I read says mortar is best left to the pros.

    4. Any tips or "ah-has" from the pro's or from those who have done similar that I should watch out for?

    Figure doing my due diligence now will help me avoid 30 hardware store trips and $100's in unexpected costs.

    Thanks for any and all help!

  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    The magic is to get the new valve set the proper distance behind the wall so the trim fits well.

    You also want a vapor barrier behind the cbu (brand doesn't matter, but Hardie is less likely to crack when you screw it down if you get it a little deep, but is harder to cut cleanly). The vapor barrier can be plastic or roofing felt, which should end over the tiling flange of the tub. With 12" tiles, you can stop the cbu at the tiling flange, since the vast majority of the tile will be supported on the wall. Otherwise, the cbu would bow out trying to go over the lip and give you grief. If you were using a small tile, you'd have to do something else like put in shims so it would fit over the lip, or notch the studs and move the tub in so the lip was even with the studs above.

    Since this is going to be used as a shower as well, DO NOT use mastic...use thinset. Industry standard calls for caulk at changes of plane (corners and the tub/wall junction).

    Check out www.johnbridge.com for tiling help.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014


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