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Unread 02-25-2022, 09:11 AM   #1
sehovarter
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transition from DensShield wall to ceiling

All - preparing to remodel my cubicle shower and DensShield seems to me the best choice. planning to put in on the walls and the ceiling over the shower. currently, room has an angled ceiling with original construction (aka drywall under 4 in square tiles - 28 years old, and getting surface mold periodically - time for it all to go) the plan is to adda water-rated light in the showerbox and an exhaust fan in center of the valted ceiling where the current bathroom light fixture is when I remove the ceiling drywall. I know I have to mesh tape/thinset all seams, then waterproof over those joints in the shower box. My question is, I won't have tile on the DensShield on the ceiling - after mesh tape and waterproofing the joints, how do I finish the joints for texture and paint? I am worried it will start to get farily thick so the transition will look like crap? Do I use regular drywall joint compound/mud over the waterproofing layer, then texture (take my time to spread it out wide to hide any raised sections??? similar question for edge of DensShield that will be outside the shower box and where it will join to regular drywall on the walls - again, I saw you use mesh tape/thinset/waterproofing layer, but what is the next step to prepare for texture and paint??? hopefully someone will read this - ready to demo the 5 piece bathroom and make it like new! thanks for this great forum - have been doing my homework and learned a lot about how to do a shower box "the right way" now my biggest challenge after this box is removing my "tub in a box", relocating the drain and supply lines for a free-standing tub on top of a new tile floor! one step at a time! Cers
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Unread 02-25-2022, 10:02 AM   #2
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Hi, Scott, and welcome,

Although your post is asking about DensShield like that old thread, we've separated yours into its own thread so as to avoid confusion with that old thread and project. We can re-name your new thread to something more generic if you like, since it sounds like you're embarking on a remodel of the entire bathroom.

Since DensShield is, basically, drywall with a moisture "resistant" coating you will need to take care that the edges that meet the shower floor are properly sealed/covered. What is you plan for those?

For the ceiling joints, I think you are going to be hard pressed to get any surface applied water proofing to finish smooth enough to be invisible under paint. You might be able to tape and mud the joints, then roll on a water proofing like RedGard, and then go over that with more drywall compound, but I don't really know how well the compound might stick to the water proofing.

Are the walls the standard 8' high before the vaulted ceiling starts? If so, the ceiling will be no more susceptible to moisture than a typical flat ceiling, commonly finished with plain drywall, tape, and pre-mixed compound. Good quality primer and paint will provide plenty of protection, IMO.
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Unread 02-25-2022, 10:07 AM   #3
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Welcome, Scott.

How high is this sloped ceiling?

Generally, the ceiling is not considered part of the wet area of the shower and can drywall, finished with common drywall mud and paper tape.

The junctions of your shower wallboard, with waterproofing, and the drywall walls should occur well outside the wet area and can also be finished the same as drywall anywhere else in the room. Any wallboard junctions in the wet area must be treated per the manufacturer's instructions and properly waterproofed.

You speak of a "shower box," but I'm not seeing any indication of how you plan to make the receptor. You've made yourself familiar with the serious limitations of using DensShield with a traditional shower receptor? You have a different plan?

[Edit] Mr. Dan is quick this morning.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 02-25-2022, 11:53 AM   #4
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Hi Scott,
After reading some threads here about Denshield and other gypsum-based products being likely to disintegrate or be otherwise compromised if they get wet, I have switched to using either Durock or some other CBU and a liquid waterproofing like RedGard for recent projects.

Denshield was the thing that the guy I started learning from used, but on more research, I am not comfortable with it in a wet area like a shower or tub surround. I haven't used Laticrete's Hydroban board and related products, but am planning on using them on my next project for a variety of reasons, especially since they are so lightweight, waterproof, and possibly structurally stronger than Schluter Kerdi board.

Echo CX's point about drywall board (maybe the moisture-resistant variety?) being fine for the ceiling as long as the height is suitably above the level of the shower head.
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Unread 02-26-2022, 08:11 AM   #5
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Thanks for the input all

CX/Matt

thanks for the input. let me address the replys in order

CX - ceiling in the room with the shower/toilet is sloped upwards. at the back of the shower it is 8 ft and just outside the current shower door angles up to around 9 ft. when I pull the old drywall out, planning to put a light over the shower box. there is a small shelf along the back well - around 5-6 inches, that has always been "moving" - most likely due to quick construction with plain old drywall and no mesh taping or sealing prior to tile over. funny you both say "avoid" densshield - I have been reading a lot and thought this was a good option since it is waterproof and has to be way better than the gypsum originally installed that has "sort of" survived for almost 30 years. I have used durarock and it sucks to work with, and hardie - but mostly for floor tile work and decorative tile in a non-wet area in a 1/2 bath. I have been lookign at go-board and some of the newer foamboard options - but those seem hard to find. HomeDepot and Floor and Decor have something new called "Sentinal" but reviews are scarce and there are concerns it is to new and an unproven material. love the idea of a light weight foam board that is easy to install/trim/fit, and understand (1) use appropriate caulk/sealant between joints, (2) use the big washers, (3) tape and seal all seams/joints and then (4) tile over. anyone know more about sentinal since that is currently available?? also very little info on what materails to use between boards and over seams.... as noted in my post, I have ALWAYS mesh taped seams over hardie or durarock, but for this project learned the need to also cover with a sealant before tiling. hard to assess what "silicone" sealant to use between boards and in corners, as there are posts that say tile might not stick to all silicones - perhaps if I put the waterproof sealant over those seams that concern goes away (Hydra-something is at local floor and decor and probably homedepot). the biggest issue with this room is twice a year we get surface mold on the walls and ceiling above the shower, primarily due to the sloped ceiling but lack of vent fan. there is a window in the room - but none of the moisture can escape as it all goes up and along the sloped ceiling. I plan to install a combo light/vent fan in the middle of the room to help move moisture out when the shower is used - that should mitigage/minimze future surface mold issues. what I have learned from my research is how important and relatively easy it is to build a waterproof box before tiling. I am more than willing and capable to spend a little more $ and take a little more time to seal the shower up, and if I add the fan, my shower shoudl last 30 more years easily - longer than I plan to live here (or maybe be alive! the biggest decision now is what materials I use for the walls (DensShield, Kerdi, Go-Board, Hardee, Durarock), and then what are the correct materials to seal it all up (silicone in corners and between boards, fiber or mesh tape over seams/joints, waterproof sealant over seams/joints, and the transition from whatever I use to the adjacent drywall). will continue to search this forum and other places for insights and help, but before I start demolition, I need to pick my sub-structure materials! tile we are looking at are 12 x 48 so the upside is minimal grout seams this time around (versus the decaying grout in OEM 4x4 tiles - UGH) some pics of the space as it currently exists, and the tile for the walls and floor attached. note, for the shelf in teh shower, one piece of the wood plank floor tile will sit at the shelf - so the only grout along the edges..... (YEAH) oh - and BTW - tub in the box is a gonner will be putting a free-standing soaker tub there, with plank floor tiles underneath and the same tile as is going in the shower as the surround. we debated just re-tiling the box and dropping a new tub in the hole, but decided that has to go - get out of the 90's and into teh 21st century!!
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Unread 02-26-2022, 08:50 AM   #6
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Scott, please, please give us some paragraph breaks in those epic posts to make them more readable. I'm gonna try to wade through the one above, but no telling what I'll miss.
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Unread 02-27-2022, 09:29 AM   #7
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copy on breaks versus streaming thoughts in my posts

CX - this might be a repeat post, I though I responde yesterday, but when I came back today, did not see my apologetic response to your post. here is is again (re-created but most of the thoughts/topic the same)

CX - sorry - probably should stay off the forum early in the am after 3 cups of coffee - concious streaming is not a good form of communication

so - to boil it down into a couple key topics:

First - what is the best backer material? there are many choices: (1) Foamboards, Kehrdi or Wedi (known and well thought of) or Sentinal (new and not very well known), (2) Durock (hard to cut and must be waterproofed, (3) Hardee or GoBoard (a little easier to cut but still need to be waterproofed), (4) DensShield or Purple board (despite marketing materials by the manufacturers, no one on this and a few other forums seem to like either, definatly NOT purple, but even DensShield deemed not good, even if you seal the seams/joints and screw tops). Presently, Kehrdi/Wedi boards hard to find, if I go Durock or Hardee/GoBoard, then I am rolling redguard to seal up the box. DensShield seems appealing as it is easy to cut (like drywall) and I really only need to tape and waterproof seams/joints/screw tops - but as noted above, experts say to avoid.

Second, once I determine what my backer material will be, is how to work the transitions, the joint from the side walls to the ceiling, and from the baskerboard to the adjacent drywall on the walls? there is not a lot out there that discusses these transitions. the end vision is you texture and paint the ceiling and walls outside the tiled space - so mesh tape/thin set joints do nto seem correct - should those seams/interfaces be under the tile? my tile will extend outside of the shower base/enclosure, so having a mesh tape/thinset joint between the backer board and the drywall could easily be hidden by the tile (some of the tile outside the water box would simply be attached to the ajoining drywall!) it that ok?

for the walls to the ceiling, I am plannign to remove the drywall from the ceiling and replace - and as noted, install a light over the shower box. also a light/fan fixture in the center of the vaulted ceiling. I was "thinking" of running my 12x48 tiles all teh way up to the angled ceiling - but (1) that will be a long tricky cut on a 12 x 48 tile and (2) if I have to waterproof the seams between the walls and ceiling - for the parts not tiled over, how do I finish and paint so it looks like "normal textured drywall"? perhaps I don't take my tile that high, go all the way to the top on the back wall, but leave the triangles on the sides and simply mud&tape the transition from the side walls with normal drywall mud/tape, texture and paint (with bathroom rated paint for moisture protection). I can use the DensShield for the ceiling for extra moisture protection? most of what is online are shower boxes sealed floor to ceiling - so that is the confusing part to me!!

I did find a video specifically talking about transitions but even it shows backer board to purple board as mesh tape/waterproofed - but does not addres the final step - how to finish beyond th edge of the tile!!?? (I just realizied why my response yesterday failed - I am nto allowed to include video links!!)

I want to make the shower box so it will last 15-20 years. the original construction configuration is almost 30 years old, and while one might say "it has lasted", the cracks in the grout, surface mold on the dryeall, etc really just means it has "survived" - with a lot of annual cleaning and maintainence. my goal is to build a shower that simply needs to be cleaned regularly, but structurally and from a waterproof standpoint is bullet proof!

thanks for your patience and support - I am going my homework before I start buying the $15K worth of materials for this large 5 piece master bathroom (2 vanities/counters with single sinks, the shower/toiled room, new tile in the shower and on the floors, and removing the tub in a box, tiling underneath it and installing a freestanding tub!) pics of the rest of the project attached FYSA
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Unread 02-27-2022, 09:30 AM   #8
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Talking Pics of rest of project

Looks like my additional pictures did nto attach to my last post - so trying again here! (think I forgot to hit "upload" - pilot error!
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Unread 02-27-2022, 11:33 AM   #9
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First thing I need clarification on is the method of constructing your shower receptor. You're planning to create a tiled shower receptor, or are you planning to use some sort of pre-fabricated receptor with tiled walls?

Choice of wallboard and method of waterproofing is entirely a dealer's choice. There are lots to choose from, as you indicate, and all of them will work if installed per product manufacturers' instructions. The methods vary rather widely among the various materials.

I'm not a large fan of the foam boards, simply because I don't see the advantage when their cost is so high and some labor savings might be their only advantage and DIY labor is free. And given that a couple of the sheet-type direct bonded waterproofing membranes allow installation over gypsum wallboard, I've never even considered the use of a foam board an advantage for me even when I'm building the shower for hire. Entirely up to you.

Transitions of the wallboard from the wet area to the dry area is quite simple. You must make this transition outside the wet area. I recommend you make it several inches outside the wet area where you end your waterproofing and tile. You can treat this joint the same as any other dry area wallboard joint. And you can tile over the joint or have the joint beyond the tile area and treat it the same as the rest of the wall outside the wet area.

The ceiling in a shower is generally not considered part of the wet area unless the ceiling is very low. The ceiling/wall joint can be treated as a joint in any dry area.

A properly constructed shower should have a life span of a minimum of 30 years and 50 years is quite reasonable. Your 15 - 20 year plan is a short-term shower. Do it right and do it only once.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 02-28-2022, 10:56 AM   #10
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Shower Receptor

CX - planning a solid surface shower base. one of our biggest complaints is how the current plastic base creaks and groans when walked on. don't want to do a tile floor - just a white solid surface floor - it is expensive, but will last and match the other white fixtures planned for the remodel

I have read extensively how to to handle transition from whatever wall board I plan to use to the base lip (overlap, min 1/8 gap between backerboard and top of shower base, overlapping lip), and fill 1/8 gap with mold-resistant silicone caulk.

understood on backer board to ceiling and backer board to sidewall drywall - tape/texture and pain like regular drywall outside of the wet areas (ceiling is already outside wet area, for side walls, out side the shower door/glass a few inches....)

so, other than waiting for my nagging back to settle down, keys to a long lasting shower are (1) whatever backer board you choose, waterproof accordingly all seams, corners and nail heads, (2) transitions from backer board to regular drywall shoudl be outside the wet area (and tile can extend outside wet area (mine will for sure) and (3) by using somethign like DensShield for the ceiling and adding an exhaust fan in this bathroom - effectively moving moisture out of the shower area (by running the fan) and using something better than conventional gypsum board for the ceiling should minimize the issues currently being experiences in our 28 bathroom

thank you so much for your inputs and this forum. I promise to post some pics as I progress and when I am done! but I now have a very good grasp on how to properly build a waterproof shower enclosure prior to tiling - I have learned a LOT inthe past week - and this forum as well as other videos/youtube posts have been AWESOME! cheers all
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