Standard height for wall tiles???? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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09-20-2001, 12:23 PM
In my remodel I am not tiling walls all the way to the ceiling (in shower yes). Just wondering what's the standard? If it matters, the room is 9' x 7' with 8' ceilings. I will be using 6 x 6 ceramic tiles. I was figuring about 5' up from the floor? Just another wrinkle on the brain...

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09-20-2001, 01:36 PM
I dunno about a standard but the architects I've dealt with have specified 6 ft above shower/tub combinations. I guess this makes the total height somewhere around 7.5'.

For showers I like to have at least a foot above the shower arm. No particular reason, just my preference


John Bridge
09-20-2001, 03:54 PM

I think you must be talking about a wainscot, and there is no standard. Three feet works well. Comes a little over the toilet tank. In the old days they liked to come to the bathroom window sill, about 42 inches or so.

Rob Z
09-20-2001, 08:50 PM

The wainscots I see in old houses are usually about 48" off the floor.


09-21-2001, 06:49 AM
Since we've just learned that wainscott heights are not fixed in spec'd dimensions, I suggest (I wainscotted my previous bath makeover) that you plan ahead and 1. arrange to use full tiles so no cutting is necessary, 2. if you haven't yet selected an edging for the top, do so now then 3. consider if the resulting height, say matches the height of a vanity or other feature in the bathroom. That way you may adjust the wainscott height based on aesthetics plus ease of install/cuts and economics of buying appropriate edging tile or perhaps hardwood trim.

For what it's worth. Hope I'm of some help as one DIYer to another.

09-21-2001, 08:39 AM
Well, thanks for the input. You see I am on the tall side and the wife is short so we have conflicts often ie.. I want it higher and her lower. Once, after hanging a glass panel door I installed the lockset a little higher then the standard and wife still gives me grief over it. Anyway, if there is no standard I guess I will just do it by eye. I mean what I think looks appropriate. Higher I guess hahhaha

John Bridge
09-21-2001, 04:22 PM
AJ, You apparently have not learned from your "grief." You have also apparently not figured out how things are run around the typical American household. [Now Patti, I mean nothing by that. You know I don't, honey.]

09-22-2001, 08:59 AM

42" looks proper.I've measured art-deco bathrooms from the 30's-50's and the black mud cap was always at a height of about 40-42".Had to do an art-deco bathroom(200 s.f. floor! 300 s.f. walls)and the "wainscotted" walls I installed up to that height.Wanted it to look authentic.

09-23-2001, 11:08 AM
personally i like to see a wainscot incorporated to the height needed for the sink backslash!

Bud Cline
09-23-2001, 03:56 PM
Something that requires consideration and I don't see mentioned here is the existance of wall outlets and switches. Though I know of no standard (height for wainscot) you wouldn't want the top of your wainscot passing through an outlet or switch. These things often are the determining factor when I am establishing a wainscot height.

Also, to determine your height so as to use only full tiles, though in theory is a good idea, it usually doesn't work because the floors (level) will stab you in the back every time. I always first determine how far out of level the floor is then establish the layout so that the botom or second from bottom row of tile must be cut. (The bottom row if no cove base is used and the second from the bottom if cove base tile is used.)

09-23-2001, 04:02 PM
Hi Bud!

09-23-2001, 04:09 PM
Hey, who is the new guy? Bud somethin'?

Gottee short rememberies 'round here, maybe so. :D

John Bridge
09-23-2001, 04:26 PM
Hi Bud, Glad you're back.

As far as using full tiles is concerned, the old time wainscots were attached to the tub surround in almost every case. The choice then was to start with a full tile at the floor of the wainscot or a full tile at the deck of the tub.

To tell the truth, I don't see many wainscots going in nowadays. I think it sort of dates the room.