Walk in tub to walk in shower conversion [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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07-19-2019, 10:24 PM
Hello all. I've been reading and lurking here for the past 6 months, studying to convert my former walk-in tub on a slab to a tiled walk in shower with a half wall.
I have decided to go with Kerdi board with a mud pan.
I have demo'd the old tub and surround & am planning on moving my drain tomorrow.
I appreciate the collection of knowledge here.
Chime in as you see fit.

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07-20-2019, 01:37 AM
Welcome to the forum. First chance you get, please add a first name to your permanent signature line. :)

I would recommend that you remove the sheetrock to the ceiling. What you'll often find is that the edge of the existing sheetrock is built up with mud and possibly tape, making it thicker than 1/2" Kerdiboard.

However, if you find that edge is actually 1/2", you may be just fine with what you have.

I'd also get rid of that outlet in the lower right of the picture.

You're not planning for a niche anywhere, are you?

07-20-2019, 09:00 AM
Thanks Kman!

Name's Mike, pleasure to meet ya!

Yes, the outlet will be going away.

I'm not sure exactly where the top edge of the tile field is going to land just yet, probably where a full length of tile ends, somewheres in the vacinity of the window, so there may be a little more drywall trimmed off, but I was not planning on going all the way to the ceiling. Luckily there is no buildup behind the drywall, and the drywall itself is just a blonde one over 1/2".

I did discover an issue with the breaker box though. It was not installed into the studbay squarely, and the left side sticks out 1/4"-1/2" into the plane where the kboard will be installed.
Since that is not gonna fly, I've got to bump it out 1/2" into my closet and fur it out from that side by either adding a sheet of plywood or drywall.

Definitely adds to the fun! <<<Sarcasm!

As luck would have it I AM planning on a niche on the back wall under the window in roughly the location shown.
(and changing out the window)......
(aaand replacing the insulation in the exposed wall).........
(and adding a fan & light into the ceiling above the shower)

07-20-2019, 09:11 AM
What is your geographic location? (Something else you might put in your profile. It helps to answer certain questions.)

In many climates we don't recommend removing the insulation from an exterior wall for a niche. Makes for a very cold shower.

Florida or South Texas? Not so bad. Minnesota? Not so good.

07-20-2019, 11:16 AM

1x3 works well to fur out breaker panels.

At the risk of going off topic, you mentioned the breaker panel is in a closet. I realize you didn’t put it there but be aware Section 240-24(d) of the National Electrical Code prohibits panels from being located near readily flammable items such as clothes. People often add clothes hangers after the fact which can lead to headaches with inspectors (oh, and increased fire risk apparently).

Not that you have to do anything now but just be aware should you have any code compliance inspectors in during this project.

07-20-2019, 12:19 PM
Kman, I hail from Beeeutiful Beaumont,TX area...if you favor hot muggy summers,mild winters, flat land, chemical plants, pine trees, & mosquitoes....come on down.

Seriously, I was planning on going back with foam board as my new insulation material and was under the possibly mistaken ass-umption that I could sneak at least a skinny pice in behind the niche. The only other location would be directly under the shower head.[emoji2961]

I thought I had put my place down.
I will correct that.

Great idea PC!
I am aware of the code issue, but I'm not sweating it.
I have read, re read, and re re read your thread, and will be blatantly copying some of your methods. [emoji14]

Breaks over, back to jackhammerin.

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07-20-2019, 12:32 PM
Where is the vent for that trap/drain? Why is it capped?

07-20-2019, 12:32 PM
Welcome aboard, Mike. :wave: I'm in Beaumont, as well.....

07-20-2019, 01:45 PM
You might get away with a niche in that back wall, then. I wouldn't plan on having any kind of insulation there, the wall cavity is shallow enough as is. To get a niche of any size over the valve, you'd have to route the shower head riser around it.

I'd also want to know about the vent. Maybe there's one close by? Maybe that's an auto-vent? You'll want to be changing all the to 2" drain anyway.

How about the stud spacing on that side? How wide is it?

07-20-2019, 02:10 PM
I have read, re read, and re re read your thread, and will be blatantly copying some of your methods.


PS: I’d skip the parts where I dropped large tile on finished shower floor. The part where the cat got closed in under the subfloor is your call. Ours seemed to enjoy the adventure but Mrs. PC wasn’t best pleased. :D

07-20-2019, 02:14 PM
I suspect the vent is further downstream. I bet what's showing there is overflow.

Concerning niche in insulated wall. I try to avoid, but it can be done with board foam and a sill to gain back some effective depth. This one not only an exterior wall but, had metal angle diagonal brace running through. 1" foam board.

07-20-2019, 09:42 PM
Howdy neighbor!:wave:

Plan is to put the valve in the outside half wall.
First stud is 25" away from the back corner, the next, 10" further. Could be whatever dimensions I needed as they're only holding up sheetrock....and the wife's clothes.😄

I do have a troublesome cat...he best mind his P's & Q's....

You are indeed correct regarding the overflow, the vent is located downstream.

Someone had reduced the pipe size to 1 1/2" and in the process cracked the original 2" drainpipe. Took some finagling to jackhammer 360° around it far enough down to have enough meat to glue up to once I cut out the damaged piece. If I never do that again it'll be too soon. I ain't as young as I once was...

07-20-2019, 10:11 PM
Plan is to put the valve in the outside half wall.

This will be closing in part of the opening, I assume? Just to be sure, is this wall only going up halfway to the ceiling, or halfway across the opening?

Someone had reduced the pipe size to 1 1/2"

Typical for a tub.

07-20-2019, 11:11 PM
Yes, halfway up and roughly halfway over. I got the idea Here

07-20-2019, 11:53 PM
Ok, so a wall constructed like that can be a bit flimsy. I would prefer that the studs on the end go to the ceiling and be secured with a cross brace. Absent that, you'd want to sheet it with plywood to strengthen it within itself, and have the top of it run into the intersecting wall. Notice I wrote "into" the wall, and not "up to".

So you would put two cross-braces in the intersecting wall, and the top of the half wall (two 2x4's) would run between the braces and be secured with screws. I would put one of the braces in first, then set the other so it can be cinched tightly with screws to "clamp" the wall brace in place with some pressure. You want to do everything possible to reduce the movement of that wall. Hope that explanation makes sense.

Also, the top of that wall will need to tilt slightly to promote shedding of water inside the shower. You probably want the lumber at the top of that wall to be flat to make it easier to secure like I described above. So what you can do is make the tile backer slope a bit. I usually do this on the curb by putting a couple of layers of 15# roofing felt under the backer. They need only be a couple of inches wide, and run the full length of the wall. Remember, you just want to lift the outside edge of the backer 1/16 - 1/8". Then the waterproofing layer will naturally be sloped, as will the tile. :)

I'd also add a stud in that wide bay on the left wall to give the backer better support. You may not be able to run it full length, but make it as long as you can with blocking to hold the bottom end if necessary.