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Old 03-06-2018, 09:42 PM   #1
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New tub surround

I am currently tearing out a small bathrooom, maybe 50 sq ft, it has a vanity in a room that is separated from the toilet tub/shower room by a pocket door. Will be using a wood plank porcelain tile on the floor and I'm hoping to use polished marble subway tile on the surround. This shower gets very little use, probably not even once every two weeks, but then someone will stay with us and it will get used for a week or so and then nothing for a while.

Plan on using a guy we have used before and did great work for us, here are my questions issues?

1. Using Hardibacker 1/2" on the surround
2. There is fiberglass batting on furring strips in the surround, would I benefit
from removing the batting and using rigid foam insulation instead
3. any problem using polished 3x6 or 4x12 marble for the tub surround
4. also going to use a vapor barrier over the batting if I keep it, there is one
there now but it will be torn up by the demo
5. there is a small area that will have tile outside the tub, how do I deal
with it as far as the hardi, put in a couple nailers next to the current stud
or leave it drywall?
6. any other comments concerns??
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Old 03-07-2018, 09:22 AM   #2
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Hi Jay,

I would keep the insulation you have and not worry about a moisture barrier over it. I Would install a tiling membrane on the surface of the backer board under the tile.

I would not use marble tiles in a shower, even if it's not going to be used often. I recommend porcelain tile.
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:49 PM   #3
Redlands Okie
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New tub surround

1. Ok
2. Keep the batting
3. Marble in a wet area perhaps a bad idea. Might read up on it some.
4. Vapor barrier not recommended when using a waterproof membrane on the wall behind the tile.
5. Yes add nailers or blocks as needed. Hardi board is great idea near the tub and much better than the sheetrock.
6. Remember the water proof membrane must be sealed to the tub before you tile.
No grout in corners, or meeting the tub, use sanded caulk matching your grout or silicone.
Unless its really easy to access and not worry about the patch work you might make sure the valves and plumbing are in good shape and not needing replacement.
I am not seeing how the valves are mounted. Make sure the valves assembly cannot wiggle before you cover up.
If your keeping the tub cover it and protect it from damage. Then do it again with something just to be safe
Keep the commode lid shut when working in the area. Also the commode is a handy tool shelf and very easily damaged............
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:24 PM   #4
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1.Yeah the diverter will be replaced with a new unit, it is original from the 70's, we will also probably also replace the copper run because the shower head is too low, the cpvc will stay but I would like to put shut off valves in the adjoining closet. My Dad is a retired pipe/steam fitter so the plumbing stuff isn't an issue.

2. I had not planned on using a membrane on top of the hardibacker boards. For the simple fact that the 40 year old drywall is in almost perfect condition with very little moisture issues (within an inch or two of the tub, no doubt due to poor or no caulking.

3. The last time I did this (in Philadelphia 11 years ago) I used wonderboard within an inch or so of the tub and the tile guy used versabond and nothing else, and I can access the backside of the tub and see no water issues at all.

4. Please don't get me wrong I am here for help and respect your knowledge just not sure why I should go the expense and trouble of using ditra, when even the drywall has held up well for over 4 decades?

5. Sigh, the marble looks so nice and no porcelain or ceramic I have seen even comes close really, but c'est la vie it will save me a load of money anyway.

6. By waterproof membrane you mean like Redgard?? And I would apply that to the hardi where it meets the tub which will be hidden by the tile? Will it create a bump that will have to be compensated for in tiles above the membrane

7 One last question about the hardi, my thought is that the piece on the back of the tub suround, spans the entire length it's like 59 5/8 or so, and then the side pieces butt up against the back piece, is this correct? I may or may not have to install the backer board.
Btw, thank you very much for your assistance I greatly appreciate it, and if any of you are in Central Florida your welcome to stop by.

Last edited by jaysz; 03-07-2018 at 11:32 PM.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:17 PM   #5
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While a liquid membrane can work, many prefer a waterproof sheet membrane.
Jim DeBruycker
Not a pro, multiple Schluter Workshops (Schluterville and 2013 and 2014 at Schluter Headquarters), Mapei Training 2014, Laticrete Workshop 2014, Custom Building Products Workshop 2015, and Longtime Forum Participant.
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