Ceramic Tile Questions


I would like to tile the walls around my bathtub. Do I need a special backing board or can I tile over the existing gyprock? Is there a special goo needed for showers? Do I grout with the same stuff I stick the tiles on with? Any tips or suggestions? I have to tile around an existing window, where do I start? Is there a good website or book or video that may help? Thanks for any help.
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|I am tiling a small half-bath with an area roughly a little over 4'x8' | with ceramic tile. The old floor was plywood that was screwed and | nailed to the subfloor. There is an area 51" by 13" where there is no | plywood, just old wood flooring. The other wood flooring had been | taken out and replaced with the plywood. The floor is solid with no | bounce when jumped on. There is an elevation difference of less than | 1/8". | Questions: What can be done about the elevation difference or since | it is so small, is it really a problem?
Do I need to use backerboard
no
| or can I use mastic directly over the wood?
mastic on a floor..............no use thinset
If I use backerboard, can | I just glue it for that small of a space? |
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I am confident you will get some very valid answers, and they will likely reflect the way it's supposed to be done. And I've done it that way.Till I decided there's gotta be a better way. First, I took the wall covering away, exposed the studs, and the inside face of the outside wall. With the exact measurement of a stud, I found three thicknesses of Styrofoam that when used would be exactly the same thickness. That included some that were thin, originally made to use as a ceiling 'tile'. I cut the pieces to fit inside the stud spaces, with cuts arranged so there was no wall visible. Bump that wall, it's seriously solid. Important to insulate the wall, so that it doesn't serve as a condensate point during the wintertime. Then I used Greenboard. It's more resistant to moisture. But on another project, I just used strand board (OSB). The grout is the weak link in a tile project. It's a cementous material. The tile stops water, but it can go past or through the grout. Even with acrylic additive. So I used silicone. Pure 50 year white GE silicone. I found a tile style called Arctic Ice, since discontinued, that matched the white silicone without being "hospital white". Pure silicone is nonpaintable, and therefore less easily stained. No tub is perfectly level. I checked the level line, struck a line the height of a tile plus an eighth inch, got three pieces of straight wood to put at the level line. Starting one tile distance above the tub means that irregularities of the tub are not the basis of further ones up in the tile work. I did the 5' wall portion first. After centering and working from there. I took the first tile, squiggled about 5 rows of silicone on the back, put it about 1/4" from its final resting spot at the middle, pressed it as I moved it into position, then I went to other stuff while it cured as a fast cure product. After it wasn't going to move, I took the next tile, 5 squiggles, and applied silicone to the edges of the one in place, and the next one, and put that second one in place, snugging it to the first one with only the thickness of a kitchen match distance top and bottom. And went from there getting the excess silicone from between them and using it on the back of the next tile. Finger got siliconed, so did my pants. With that spacing, if I had started from one side, I would have had an inconvenient opening at the other side. Because a typical grouted space is more than that. The tiles at the ends of the tub covered that space nicely.
The window I removed, replaced it with glass block. Placed even with the tile, clear silicone at its transitions. I left the storm window outside alone, disabled its lock so I could open it from outside if I wanted. Besides a regular tile cutter, an angle grinder with a good masonry blade is awfully handy.
Oh, and while I had the wall exposed, I added 2x2's to the 2x6's of the toilet wall, used some cabinet doors I found at a flea market, and created a storage wall with 7" depth, so that I could use a pedestal sink instead of a cabinet sink that took up a lot more room. Doing that meant putting my commode tank on a shelf 24" above the commode, with a plumbing adapter made for that purpose, and the toilet certainly flushes with enthusiasm.
So now I'll let the others tell how it's supposed to be done.

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