Gaps created by cement-board being further that the bathtub-lip when tiling?


I've never seen a tub with brackets like that. Usually the lip of the tub gets secured directly to the framing. What brand/model of tub is that? Can you find info online? Many tub manufacturers have installations instructions that indicate how things like backerboard should be applied.

Different sources including this Family Handyman article on Backerboard around tub indicate that you should stop the backerboard 1/4" from the top of the tub lip and the tile should canteliver over it to 1/4" above the tub.

If you look at this installation manual for a Kohler tub it tells you to use 1/4" furring strips to extend the backer board over the lip.

If you can find the manual for your tub I'd go with what they recommend. If you can't, or the brackets aren't part of a normal tub install I'd contact the manufacturer of the backer board to see if it's okay to chisel out some recesses for the brackets. If you want the backer to go over the lip use furing strips and chisel...

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Cement board detail

The best approach when installing cement board or other tile backer around a tub is to keep the cement board out of the lip area. Apply it to the wall with the bottom edge about 1/4 in. above the lip of the tub. Then apply a generous amount of thin-set to the bottom tile and position it 1/8 in. above the tub. Fill the gap between the tile and the tub with caulk.

Required Tools for this Project

Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.

Caulk gunCordless drillHammerNotched trowel

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here’s a list.

CaulkThinset mortarTile...
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In this article I will show you how to install cement board using methods that are simple and will save you time. I will also reveal many tips that will help you through the areas that most people struggle with. These tips will guide you passed these problem areas and you will have a much easier time installing cement board.

I also will show you how to avoid the #1 mistake people make when installing cement board. This mistake can cause a complete tile installation failure, causing loss of money and time! With the right guidance, learning how to install cement board is actually a pretty easy task.

6 Must Have Tools When Installing Cement Board

There are a few tools that you will need when installing cement board. Some of these tools you might already have. If you don’t, this is what I would recommend.

Supplies Needed for Installing Cement Board

There are a few supplies that you are going to need when installing cement board. You can get all of...

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Cement board is often called a cementious backer unit (CBU) or backer board. Unlike wood-based materials such as drywall, greenboard, or plywood, CBUs have no organic matter that will cause mold, rot, shrinkage, or decomposition. Also, because there is no cellular material in cement boards, it does not draw in moisture like cellulose materials do.

Cement backer board is the recommended substrate below tile.

If you have a good, smooth cement board surface, your tile work will go easier and the results will be smoother. You will have less chance of lippage (tile edges of various heights) and a greater chance that your tile will last for a longer time without cracking. CBUs are high value, low cost items that can only make your tile work look better.

What Goes Below Your Cement Board?

Because cement board can be used either for floors or walls, the surface below the cement board will vary.

Flooring: Your backer board will usually rest on top of...
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Cement board is composed of aggregated Portland cement with a glass-fiber mesh on the surfaces. This 5/16 inch (7.9 mm) thick cement board is designed as an underlayment for tile floors. These are 3 by 5 foot (91 by 152 cm) sheets

A cement board is a combination of cement and reinforcing fibers formed into 4 foot by 8 foot sheets (or 3 foot by 5 foot sheets), 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick that are typically used as a tile backing board. Cement board can be nailed or screwed to wood or steel studs to create a substrate for vertical tile and attached horizontally to plywood for tile floors, kitchen counters and backsplashes. It can be used on the exterior of buildings as a base for exterior plaster (stucco) systems and sometimes as the finish system itself.

Cement board adds impact resistance and strength to the wall surface as compared to water resistant gypsum boards. Cement board is also fabricated in thin sheets with polymer modified cements to allow bending for curved...

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Your concern is appreciated. You all are a huge help on these forums, but at the end of the day, I have to get out there and start


the work, making some mistakes, then paying (in time and money) to fix 'em.

When my second child was born last year, there was a new anesthesiologist resident who came in to do the epidural for my wife. He stabbed at her back like Ray Charles was going at it, before the big doc stepped in and took over. Mistakes must be made in order to learn, but I really do appreciate you all helping me skip over the obvious ones.

I've got a pretty good grasp on this and the last couple I did turned out fairly well, but I know now I missed a couple of details on those first ones that might burn me down the road.

Last edited by onmywayup; 10-07-2012 at 08:29...
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I appreciate the replies. I didn't feel that shimming out the studs was a good option because then I would've either had to tear off the Sheetrock on the walls beyond the shower and shim those studs as well, or be left with a situation where those walls would be offset from the shower walls. I wanted a smooth wall transition from inside the shower to the outside without having to gut practically the entire bathroom.

With me being a novice at all this, I don't think I could've successfully notched the bottom of the hardiebacker. The groove would've been so deep, I'm pretty sure the remaining thin layer of hardiebacker would've ended up breaking off. An any event, I'm not planning on ripping out the hardiebacker, so I need to deal with the gap where the flange is.

There is a vapor barrier, but it's currently laying just behind the lip. Another person at a home depot who told me to do it that way. I can pull it out and have it laying over the lip if necessary. I'm...

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DEAR TIM: I have a ceramic-tile job coming up and want to use cement backer board. I have never installed this product before, and wonder if it is really worth it. It seems hard to work with and I am tempted to just use a water-resistant drywall. Is cement backer board really worth the trouble? What tips can you share to make the job go easier and faster? Jackie L., Pleasant Hill, CA

DEAR JACKIE: There are all sorts of different tile backer board products out there. Some are cement-based, some are gypsum-based and others have a mix of ingredients. The cement-backer-board products can be a little tough to work with during the installation process, but in my opinion, they pay you back in spades for the effort.

I am not against new technology when it comes to building products. There are countless examples of where a new product is much better than existing products. Plywood and oriented strand board (OSB) are excellent examples of this. Before plywood and OSB,...

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Installing cement board is an important part of a bathroom renovation, particularly if you would like to install ceramic tile around the tub. While it is not waterproof, cement board does resist water and will not get moldy or break down if it gets wet, and it is strong enough to support your brand new tile. Although the project takes a little effort and elbow grease, the strong, long-lasting results are worth the physical investment.

Cover the bathtub with a drop cloth and tape the edges to the tub to make sure no dust or debris escapes into the tub beneath the cloth's edge.

Install the first full sheet of cement board lengthwise against the back wall (long edge of the tub). Hold the sheet against the wall and insert 1/4-inch spacers to keep the cement board 1/4 inch above the tub's lip. Screw the board into place with 1 1/4-inch cement board screws. Insert each screw straight and make the screws flush with the board.

Cut the next sheet to fit above the first,...

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Set the first tile in the middle of the wall (or floor).

This will create a pleasant visual effect and allow each tile that is placed beside it on either side seem centered. After back buttering, simply press the tile onto the backer board and apply pressure to make sure that the mortar adhered properly to both the tile and the backer board. Then, give the tile a little twist and tap each one with a rubber mallet, especially the floor tiles.

Wipe away any excess thin-set mortar after pressing the tile onto the backer. Although you'll be grouting and caulking between the tiles, it's best not to leave any thin-set on oozing out from the sides of the tile. Dig out any oozing thin-set that you notice. Simply wipe away excess thinset with your finger or a Q-tip. Use small shims or other spacers to allow a small amount of space between the bottom of the tile and the lip of the shower pan.[8] Small pieces of cardboard work great as makeshift shims. After the mortar is set, you can...
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Hi I agree with The Handyman, do not use 6mm or 9 mm ply this is too thin, although you can use ply at no less than 15mm. It is far better to use 6mm cement backer board glued and screwed but remember to leave a 2mm gap between the boards for expansion, if you do decide on ply only prime with SBR NOT pva, pva is not fit for purpose.
Hi further to your new comment you can install the bath first then board up to it but do not use ply, I recommend cement backer board this is a far better substrate to tile on. A lot of people think that the tile backer board is to pricey so they opt for ply this can work out being more expensive when the tiles start to crack due to movement from the ply and will need replacing,and really the backer board works out roughly 10 to 12 pounds more for around the same as an 8 x4 of ply so for a average bathroom it's worth the extra cost.

Hi, further to your comment you can get the backer board from any builder merchants, also topps tiles, tile...

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Step 1: Overview

The traditional method of installing ceramic tile called for setting it in a solid mortar bed. Troweling a perfectly flat bed required great skill, but the reward was a tile job that lasted for decades. Today, most professional tile setters back their tile with cement board instead, because it offers almost the same durability with a lot less work. And the best part? Do-it-yourselfers can use it too.

Cement board is a thin layer of mortar sandwiched between sheets of fiberglass mesh cloth. The 1/2-in. thick board is unaffected by water, making it a great substitute for a mortar bed.

In this article, we’ll show you how to create a strong, durable and waterproof tile base around your bathtub using cement board. We chose the tub surround because it’s highly leak-prone, and an ideal spot for cement backer board. Although cement board is heavy and a bit awkward to cut, even a novice should be able to complete a professional-quality tub surround,...

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Thats fine if you want to. (I assume you're only talking about the area to be tiled and not the balance of the bathroom). But the difference from a 1/2" sheetrock and your cement backer couldn't be more than a 1/16" or so. Thats nothing.

If its greater than that I'd expect that the sheetrock was 5/8" or there are cardboard shims under the sheetrock. If the backer is thinner than the sheetrock, just go to Home Depot or Lowes and get a $7 stack of cardboard shims and fur out the boards so they are the same plane.

Or do what I do when setting larger than 6" tiles,
a.) Comb the thinset on both areas like you normally would and press tiles so that it has usual thinset thickness over the CBU and squish out the little extra thinset on the sheetrock portion (your going to have enough margin to do that;

or b.)thinset the unevenness screeding from the high to the low area within one trowel width and let dry. Then tile...

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