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Unread 10-27-2008, 09:38 PM   #1
mckeand13
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Newbie with shower and tile questions

Let me explain my project which is a remodel of the original bathroom. The house was built in 1958 and is in Wisconsin. The bathroom is pretty small at 5' x 7'.

Everything is being removed. It will soon be down to just stud walls once the ceiling (3/8" sheetrock & 3/8" plaster) is removed and the bathtub is smashed and removed.

I am going to put a new cast iron tub back in and tile both the floor and walls surrounding the shower/tub. I plan to go all the way to the ceiling with the tile around the shower. All wall are interior walls.

I have searched around on old posts quite a bit and I seem to find varying answers to my questions. I'm sure they are redundant but I would appreciate the help if people can chime in with suggestions. I can't seem to find much consensus, just varying opinions.

1) Vapor barrier barrier around the shower. Tar/felt paper? 4 or 6mil Poly?

2) Vapor barrier on the ceiling before sheetrock?

3) I plan to use Durock around the shower up to the ceiling. Sound correct?

I like the look of tile all the way up and really don't want the hassle of piecing in sheetrock for the last 12" or so.

4) I'm planning on using 5/8" regular sheetrock on the ceiling of the entire bathroom including the shower area. Is that ok or should be be greenboard? Is greenboard to heavy for the ceiling or does its additional stiffness prevent sagging?

5) I was thinking of using 1/2" greenboard around the rest of the bathroom walls. The shouldn't be getting wet (hopefully), but is there any benefit vs. regular drywall?


On to the floor.

I don't have the existing tile floor removed yet, but it is currently a mortar bed and the plywood was originally removed and replaced by boards in between the floor joists. Once I've got the current tile floor out, I should be back to the top of the floor joists.. I think I have enough room to do do 3/4" plywood as a subfloor, 1/2" cement board as a backerboard and then tile.

1) If 3/4" plywood raises the floor too much, is 1/2" acceptable?

2) Should there be any sort of water proofing underneath the subfloor or between the backerboard and subfloor?

Any help is greatly appreciated!
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Unread 10-27-2008, 10:15 PM   #2
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Hi, and welcome. How about going to user CP, then enter a name in the signature tool?

1. Any of those will work, unless you decide to use a surface applied membrane over the Durock.

2. Same as #1. I would skip the plastic/felt if there is insulation with a barrier above the ceiling.

3. Durock is fine.

4. Regular drywall on the ceiling. Half inch would be fine unless you need the extra thickness if there is no soffit to separate the shower ceiling from the bath ceiling. Greenboard is NOT stiffer, it's actually not as stiff. Greenboard should be applied to ceiling joists spaced 12" o.c., reg. wallboard can span up to 24".

5. Greenboard in the rest of the bath walls where there is no water is what greenboard is made for.

FLOOR

1. Half inch is NOT acceptable, stay with 3/4" but use 1/4" backer board instead.

2. No membrane needed. If you want a waterproof floor, you would need to also flash the membrane up all walls including the tub and doorway, kinda hard to do.

Are you going with ceramic tiles as apposed to natural stone tiles? Have you used the deflecto tool above to confirm the joists are good to go?

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Unread 10-28-2008, 05:49 AM   #3
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Welcome, mckeand13. Please put a first name in a permanent signature line for us to use (UserCP/Edit Signature).

2. Not normally unless it's required by your very cold climate, which we don't know you have.

4. half-inch sheetrock is suitable for ceilings only if the joist spacing is 16"oc or less. What Jaz said about the MR board (greenrock).

5. There is no advantage I'm aware of to having MR board on the walls of the rest of the bathroom unless your inspector just wants to see it there.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 10-28-2008, 01:35 PM   #4
mckeand13
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Ran the Deflecto calculator and here are my results:

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For joists that are Unknown wood, but in good condition, 9.25 inches tall, 1.5 inches wide, 16 inches on center, and 12.5 feet long between supports, the deflection calculated is 0.389 inches.

This translates to a deflection of L / 386.

Since the maximum deflection for tile is L / 360, and for natural stone is L / 720, your floor is rated for Ceramic tile, Congratulations!

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The tile I am putting down on the floor is Edilgres Tibet Taupe if that is meaningful in any way. The tiles are 32.8mm x 32.8mm and 10.0mm thick. 57lb per 12 tiles so each one is 4.75lb.
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Unread 10-28-2008, 04:36 PM   #5
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Looks like his Edilgres Tibet Taupe tile is porcelain.
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Unread 10-28-2008, 05:35 PM   #6
mckeand13
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Yes, it's porcelain. Does that change anything?
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Unread 10-28-2008, 05:37 PM   #7
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Just install the ply and cementboard like Jaz stated, you will be ok.
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Unread 10-29-2008, 11:39 AM   #8
mckeand13
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Jaz,

Your reply of:

4. Regular drywall on the ceiling. Half inch would be fine unless you need the extra thickness if there is no soffit to separate the shower ceiling from the bath ceiling. Greenboard is NOT stiffer, it's actually not as stiff. Greenboard should be applied to ceiling joists spaced 12" o.c., reg. wallboard can span up to 24".

is contradicted by these USG tech sheets. Compare the Mold Tough vs. Gypsum.

USG Mold Tough

Regular Gypsum

In my application, I will be installing the sheets perpendicular to the ceiling joists. Both Mold Tough & Regular in 1/2" or 5/8" are all spaced at 24" OC max.

Based on those numbers, my question remains if it makes sense to use the Mold Tough, 1/2" or 5/8" on the ceiling since that will be the most moisture ?
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Unread 11-16-2008, 12:42 PM   #9
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No contradiction, Mike, those specs are not for the old MR Board (greenrock). It required 12" maximum spacing of ceiling joists for the half-inch board.

And while the manufacturer's specs indicate you can use regular half-inch sheetrock perpendicular to joist spaced at 24", you'll not pass an inspection in my area with that. Haven't tried it lately, of course, but that was still the case just a few years ago.

I'm not at all familiar with the Mold Tough, but I wouldn't hang that or regular sheetrock on ceilings with 24" joist spacing. In any application.

But I have not ever used anything but 5/8ths sheetrock on ceilings, regardless the joist spacing. Nor would I. Just the way I was raised, eh?

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 11-16-2008, 12:55 PM   #10
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Thanks CX.

So my plan is to install a poly vapor barrier on the bottom of the rafters first and then 5/8" regular sheetrock. The sheetrock will be running perpendicular to the 16" spaced rafters.

I have loose blown in insulation to put back above once finished.

Sound good?
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Unread 11-16-2008, 03:48 PM   #11
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I don't much like the idea of poly under the sheetrock on ceilings at all, but I understand in some climates and jurisdictions it's required by code.

But the 5/8ths sheetrock is certainly fine.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 11-16-2008, 08:21 PM   #12
mckeand13
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Just wondering what it is that you dislike about the poly under sheetrock?

Is there any reason not to install it? It seems like it couldn't hurt. I've seen so many opinions both ways I'm thinking I'll just install the poly. I can't think of any negatives to doing so.

Winters can get pretty dang cold here with days going below 0 deg F.
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Unread 11-16-2008, 10:33 PM   #13
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Clearly not a completely settled issue in the building science arena, Mike.

In my part of the country (South Central Texas) it makes no sense at all to have that vapor retarder up there. Even in exterior walls, the only place I recommend such membrane is behind shower walls and then only as a moisture barrier.

In the ceiling, there is commonly a large, well ventilated space above. When conditions are such that the interior of the structure is warmer than the attic space, moisture vapor is likely trying to go from the inside to the outside. That's just not a bad thing when such vapor is not going to cause any problem at all. Even in your climate where that space will frequently be well below the dew point of the vapor and even well below the freezing point, there is less likelihood that the moisture will remain in that space if it's properly ventilated.

Sealing the ceiling area against air movement by sealing around light fixtures and such is a good idea, of course. But I don't see a significant advantage of a vapor retarder there.

And when the conditions are such that the attic space is warmer and perhaps more humid than the interior spaces, the moisture vapor is gonna try to go from the attic to the interior. Worst case, the barrier could actually reach the dew point of the attic air and condensation could take place. Not life threatening due, again, to the large ventilated area above the insulation, but you can still end up with damp insulation and the problems of mold and such that go with that.

Now, preventing your wall cavities up there from the water vapor inside the structure gets to be a more difficult issue because of the smaller space and lack of ventilation. You can end up with not only condensation near the outer wall surface, but ice formation and buildup, which later melts and causes all manner of troubles. We don't suffer from that down here. And y'all don't have nearly the number of cooling days (technically measured) and any downside to the presence of the retarder on the interior side of the exterior walls is gonna be outweighed by the advantage during the heating days.

Anyway, sorry to go on and on, but this subject is no easier to 'splain than it is to deal with sometimes.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 02-06-2009, 06:19 PM   #14
mckeand13
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Mike's first bathroom remodel

Well, I'm quite a ways into it and I've asked some questions in other posts. Great help from those answers too.

I thought I would create a post where I can keep everything together and ask the questions as I progress.

This is a hallway bathroom in a 1958 house. Walls around the tub were soft an
Here's what I've done so far:
- Gutted
- New plywood subfloor glued and screwed to floor joists
- Vapor barrier (4mil poly) installed on ceiling
- 5/8" sheetrock installed on ceiling
- 1/2" mold resistant sheetrock installed on walls

The floor will be tiled in Edilgres Tibet Taupe 13" x 13" tile.

The tub surround will be tiled in American Florim Silver Lake 12" x 12" tile.

Still haven't decided on whether or not we're going to install a shower niche.

Progress is pretty slow as I'm working on this nights and weekends. I don't care too much as it is a 2nd bathroom and I just want to do a really good job along with learning.

Here are some pics of where I'm currently at:











I'll ask questions in posts following.
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Last edited by mckeand13; 02-06-2009 at 06:32 PM.
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Unread 02-06-2009, 06:22 PM   #15
Dave U.K.
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Thanks for the pics so far...look forward to more..
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