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Unread 03-29-2012, 07:36 PM   #1
regeisle
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tile tub surround - i'm stuck - wall insulation has vapor barrier

Long story short, I'm ripping out some blueboard in basement for a future tile tub sorround and replacing with 6mil plastic and CBU. Or that was the plan. I just ripped out some of the back wall and realized (remembered) that the builder had installed insulation around all outside walls. I don't recall the type of insulation, but it seems to be faced batts with a white plastic sheet on top that spans the whole wall, not just stuffed between studs. This is only on the back wall, not the sides. So that brings me to the question... what should I do on this back wall? See attached pic for what is there. It's in fairly good shape other than the square i punctured out with the drywall saw when starting this process and a few small rips and holes, but that could easily be patched. If I just apply the 6mil over that, I assume Id then be stuck with the no good moisture sandwich.

Should I just use what's there (patched) as the back vapor barrier and then attach and extend the plastic on each side for left and right walls. Or I could remove the plastic and paper face from insulation behind the entire tub area where the CBU is going and stick to the original plan. Or is that space (none, really) between the 2 plastics not enough to cause a moisture lock issue? Any other ideas? Right now I'm stuck on what to do next. Thanks!
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Unread 03-29-2012, 08:51 PM   #2
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Welcome, Rich.

I'd recommend you either remove or defeat (cut many short vertical slits) whatever that is covering the insulation and construct your shower as planned.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 03-30-2012, 10:17 AM   #3
regeisle
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Thanks for the input (and the welcome). I went ahead and removed the plastic but now stuck with the paper barrier on the insulation that will just shred up the insulation if I pull it off. Best bet just cutting a bunch of slits in the paper to allow airflow?
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Unread 03-30-2012, 10:30 AM   #4
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Yes, that would be sufficient.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 03-30-2012, 06:13 PM   #5
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And a bit off topic... it seems no matter where i look or who i ask, it's a different answer. hybrid "tub and tile" caulk or straight 100% silicone caulk for a fiberglass tub with tile surround? It's a guest bath in basement, so use is probably < 10 month. Ideally I don't want to be dealing with moldy caulk, but also don't want to be stripping it out and replacing every few years.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:23 PM   #6
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what to do with gap between flange and durock?

A few more questions and I should be good to go. Thanks for the help everyone, this is my first tile surround so want to make sure I don't slip up and have to tear it all out in a couple days!

To avoid uneven transitions, finding mudcaps, etc I've decided to stop the CBU about 1/8" above the flange (1" flange) and not furr it out and overlap. I'll be using 6" tiles, and from what I've read this will work fine since most of the tile is supported. 4mil plastic will be behind the cbu, extending down past the flange lip. Do i need to glue that plastic to the flange, or can it just hang loose as long as it's inside the tub? And do i need to fill the space where the cbu would be if it were overlapping the flange with thinset, or just leave it open and have some space behind those tiles?

Thanks! Rich
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:30 PM   #7
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Hi Rich -

No need to glue or caulk the plastic to the flange. Leave it long, let it drape into the tub, then cut it flush once the bottom row of tile is installed and caulk the gap between the tile and flange.

Quote:
And do i need to fill the space where the cbu would be if it were overlapping the flange with thinset
I'd say yes. Just use your margin trowel to press some thinset in. It won't stick to the poly, it'll just act as a gap filler.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 10:15 PM   #8
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If you are using 5/16" thick porcelain tiles you will be fine with a void of 1" or so. But if you are using thin ceramic wall tiles, the space should be filled.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 06:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
posted by Lou:
No need to glue or caulk the plastic to the flange. Leave it long, let it drape into the tub, then cut it flush once the bottom row of tile is installed and caulk the gap between the tile and flange.
I was asked this question a while back in reference to the above stated. We caulk that gap with silicone the tile to flange gap. Whether installing poly behind the cement board or waterproofing with liquid...... Water gets through the grout or tile for instance comes down the wall. With that silicone there how does it get through. I assume over the silicone and under the tile. Or does it get trapped, just thinking about this. There is probably a better answer but just thought I would bring it up.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 07:05 AM   #10
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Hey Jon

Quote:
With that silicone there how does it get through. I assume over the silicone and under the tile.
My understanding is the opposite, that caulking the tile-flange gap will prevent any water from escaping. But that the typical amount of water that gets back there will evaporate between uses via the grout lines. If there was that much water backing up behind the siliconed joint, I'd think that would indicate a larger problem.

Just my $0.02.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 07:10 AM   #11
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Lou, makes perfect sense I was thinking just of some moisture but well worth 2 cents
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Unread 04-01-2012, 10:40 AM   #12
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Rich, it'll help if you'll keep all your project questions on one thread so folks can see what you're working on and what's been previously asked and answered. We can give it a more generic title any time you'd like.

It is enough water to be a problem in a lotta cases, Lou, as we've seen here many times.

I think it's a poor procedure and have said so many times. I just don't have a one-size-fits-all solution, except for grouting that gap or caulking with spaces left open for drainage.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 11:13 AM   #13
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Thanks for the advice, CX - will do for next time (and hopefully there won't be a next time!). In regards to the space behind the tiles when the cbu is mounted above the flange, would you just leave it open, or try to fill it (thick thinset, i guess?)
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Unread 04-01-2012, 12:23 PM   #14
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I would avoid any such installation, Rich.

If I was required to tile over something like that, I would be inclined to do nothing at all with that void. I don't know that having thinset mortar in there would hurt, much, but I'd still not try to fill it with that.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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