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Thread: Tile over or attempt to tape these seams?

  1. #1

    Default Tile over or attempt to tape these seams?

    Redoing the bathroom and to get the old tub out I had to hack the wall pretty good. See photo.

    So, I've got almost no drywall taping experience and I'm looking at these joints and thinking if I try it might look pretty bad. One side has fresh drywall and the other a few layers of old paint, so the surfaces are not quite the same height.

    I'm now thinking that maybe I could just extend my tub surround tiling and go right over top the joints... maybe in a sort of stairstep pattern following the joint...

    I don't know?! Thoughts from those who've been there and done that please...

    Parry
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  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Is that drywall in the tub area? Is the tub also used for a shower? If so, I'd replace it with cbu (cement board). Is the entire area going to be tiled, or just within the tub area? CBU is supposed to have the seams taped with the special alkalai resistant mesh tape - not the same as used in drywall. That can be added during tiling - taping a cbu joint isn't the same as drywall joint - it is entirely for strength, not for show at all since it is going to be covered with the tile.

    A joint bridged by the tile should have the special tape, then you can tile over the joint onto the drywall. If there is paint where you want to tile, if the paint is well attached, scuff it up to take off any loose or gloss, wipe clean with a damp sponge, then add the thinset and tile.

    The existing drywall may have been 5/8" fire resistant stuff, and you installed 1/2". Might be breaking codes here, depending on the building. If it's an accumulation of paint and maybe wallpaper buildup, it will be hard to match, but you can try.
    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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    Product R&D for a powertool manufacturer dgold's Avatar
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    I agree w/ Jadnashua... use cement board. It's fairly easy to work with, and at least around here, I believe drywall would not be to code. The last thing you want to do is build a beautiful new bathroom and then have to tear it out in a few years because the drywall behind the tile is rotting away.

    It's one of those pay now or pay later deals, but if you pay now you only pay once.

    Also, cement board is pretty easy to work with, comes in small 3x5 (I think) sheets that are easy to move around, and cuts with a utility knife sorta kinda like drywall -- just buy lots of blades and change them often.

  4. #4
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    The gap is not a problem, but the pic on the right looks like there is an offset in plane, and that will not look good if you don't shim out the piece of drywall.

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    DIY Member enosez's Avatar
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    In your pic, the drywall is supposed be over the flange, not right up against.

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    There is a misconception that tile and grout are waterproof...not true! The surface they are mounted on must withstand getting wet. Thus, cbu in the shower area. When installing, you want to put a vapor barrier behind it, and lap it over the flange of the tub so that any moisture that might accumulate can't get into the walls and will eventually drain into the tub. If the tile you are planning is going to be more than 1/2 supported by the wall, you don't need the cbu to lap over the flange on the tub, but if you plan small tile, it does.

    Jim makes a good suggestion, if the sheets of drywall aren't flush, cut some cardboard or some other stuff as a shim behind it, then screw it back in. Joints that will be covered by tile do not want drywall mud on them...just use the thinset and its special tape when you tile...no need for a hard speed bump which is common if done in advance.

    An alternative to a vapor barrier behind cbu in the shower area is a topically applied coating, like RedGard from Custom Building Products. But, it is not recommended over drywall.

    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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