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Unread 08-23-2019, 07:41 PM   #1
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Large format tile on sheet rock ceiling?

Hello, I am tiling a shower stall with a heavy (8-10 pounds each) 12x24 inch tile on all walls and the ceiling. It is a 2 part ceiling in that there is a 3x3 foot section on a 45 degree slant and then another 3x3 foot "normal" ceiling area. Both sections have a pipe extending for shower heads. I used Durock on the walls of the shower but the builder used green Sheetrock on the 2 sections of the ceiling. My question is whether you think it is safe to tile over the sheetrock or should I have the builder replace it with concrete backer board of some type?

Either way, do you recommend a particular type of Laticrete thin set product that I should use?

Thank you, I have always gotten helpful advice from this site.
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Unread 08-23-2019, 08:21 PM   #2
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Back in the old days we use to tile over greenboard with 4 1/4 tiles but those tiles were much lighter than 12x24 tiles. The green sheetrock might hold up just fine but I would trust cement board much more. And, don't be afraid to add more blocking and joists in the ceiling.

Which ever you use, make sure you use plenty of screws and get good coverage with your thinset.

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Unread 08-24-2019, 04:48 AM   #3
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Greenboard on ceilings needs framing to be 12” o.c. to minimize the risk of sagging. If you don’t have that, I’d take down the greenboard and replace with cement board, or - at a minimum - 5/8” drywall.

A basic modified thinset from Laticrete like 253 Gold should work fine.

And waterproofing (which greenboard is not, neither is cement board) should be carried up to at least the height of the shower head. Do you have that?
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Unread 08-24-2019, 01:01 PM   #4
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I would recommend a lightweight thinset for what you are doing. It's not that it can't be done without but I think it'll be a little bit easier. Laticrete has Multimax light and Trilite. The Multimax is currently clickable in the ad on the side.

In addition to what the others have already mentioned, I would run your trowel lines all in the same direction and wiggle the tile back and forth a bit against those lines when you are installing.

The tile will stay on the ceiling but, if you are concerned, you can brace the tiles until they are set up. I know the MLT system has clips that can be screwed into the ceiling and will help hold tiles in place. Obviously, you would want backing for the screws if you were to go that route.
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Unread 08-26-2019, 11:19 AM   #5
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I thought I had read somewhere that Green Board was not recommended for bathroom ceilings period. (tile or not)

Something about the combination of the face paper moisture resistance and gravity pulling moisture towards the face paper prevents the moisture from evaporating in the gypsum.

Apparently the building codes were updated to require the 12" o.c. Lou mentions because the moisture problem allows the green board to sag.
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Unread 08-26-2019, 11:52 AM   #6
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Kerabond T hung up my 1' x 2' tiles on my ceiling... it was 5/8" drywall but sloping 2"/ft. IT stuck well but did want to slip downhill 1/8".. It almost defies logic but it holds the tiles up. I did use a support bar as I had dilex-eke on all 4 sides to use as a ledge. I do wish I had put in lots more screws just for a comfort feeling.
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