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Community and Q&A

Tiling around shower tips

MichaelBa | Posted in Green Products and Materials on


I built a small guest house and will be tiling around a one piece shower soon. I want to make sure I take the proper steps to installing the tile correctly and making sure it is waterproof so no moisture can get behind the walls.

I used wedi board as my backer board and will be using thinset over that to place my tiles.

A few questions I have
1) Is there a waterproof grout product out there?
2) If not, do I need to seal over the tile/grout? If so, what product do you reccomend?
3) Do you guys prefer to use ceramic or porcelain? I am leaning towards porcelain because it seems to be more water proof and does not have lead levels like ceramic?

Thank you.

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  1. Randy_Williams | | #1

    If I understand your situation, you have installed a one piece shower surround and are planning on tiling the walls outside the shower. The area outside the shower is not likely to receive much moisture, and not a major concern. If you are tiling inside the shower, there are several waterproofing systems that will work well. I prefer a product called Kerdi manufactured by Schluter. There are also some roll on products that work. The key is how the water drains off the tile and into the shower pan. Custom pans are a lot of work and I don't recommend that system for novice tillers. As far as the grout goes, I prefer Power Grout. You don't have to worry about being waterproof if you have a waterproofing product behind the tile. Either tile selection works well in showers, just be aware that porcelain is harder to work with. Very hard and brittle tile.

  2. MichaelBa | | #2

    Thanks Randy! Yea I already have the Wedi waterproof system installed on the walls. Tile will go over it. I know it won't get a lot of moisture but it's such a small area and I like playing it safe.

    How does Power grout weigh up in being eco friendly? And do you pay much attention to the lead levels in cermic tile? Know of any without any (besides what's naturally found in organic material)?

  3. CMObuilds | | #3

    Properly installed wedi board is waterproof. An insurance policy would be to redguard the wedi prior to tiling.

    Your biggest weak point is where the wall backer/tile touches the shower module at the floor, and module to floor tile. Those 2 areas almost always have moisture indicators, rot, and/or mold and need to be waterproofed carefully.

    Most inside wall damage will come from a crack in the module that goes unoticed or uncorrected, that can lead to pretty severe mold and deterioration that can go unnoticed until you remodel or notice some other indicators.

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