tile shower install

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by gfe76, Nov 4, 2007.

  1. gfe76

    gfe76 New Member

    Messages:
    88
    Location:
    Florida
    Atlanta area. Just bought home. Basement has bath with toilet and sink. i roughed in shower stall, and plumbed for shower. Put in drain with membrane and shower valve. Called one tile guy and got quote of installing tile. Stall is38" square. I will use shower curtain. Will use 12" tile on walls and ceiling with 4" tile on floor. $700 for labor (he says 2 days of work) and about $750 for material... (11 boxes of 12x12 tile, 40' of bullnose, 2 boxes of thin set, 7 sheets of durock, 3 bags (80#) of mason mix, 1 box of grout). Does this seem in ballpark?
    I know this is a loaded question and probably unfair to ask for thoughts, but I am just trying to get anyone's thoughts on this.

    Second question is i want the tile installed with no grout joints to make it easier to clean. Any thoughts on tile butted together with no joint lines? How durable is this type installation?

    Finally, should I use ceramic tile or stone? I know stone is more expensive but will it be more durable and easier to maintain?
    thanks for all the feedback...
  2. prashster

    prashster New Member

    Messages:
    941
    You might post this question on johnbridge.com

    I'm not a tile pro, but I did tile a shower and here's what I believe:

    1. That price is reasonable for the labor, assuming yr tiling only 3 walls and no ceiling, and assuming there's no design, inlay or niche work. 3 days seems quick. I'd figure 2 days to tile, 1 to grout, 1 to seal. Only go with a 'tiler' not a 'handyman who tiles'. The devil's in the details. You want an artist - not someone who just wants to get through it fast. There's no verifying the price of the materials; you can spend $250 or $5000 or anywhere in between for a shower that size.

    2. I wouldn't butt the joints. Use a 1/16" joint if you don't want to clean much. Also, use Spectralock grout. It's an epoxy grout that won't stain. It's about 5-10x the price of regular cement, grout though. You might use spectralock on the floor and nonsanded on the wall. If you do that though, make sure the colors match.

    3. I'd use ceramic. It's easier to install and easier to clean. Stone is porous, so it needs to be sealed more frequently or it'll stain. Glazed ceramic won't require sealing. It's also lighter and thinner than stone, so you won't need a special thinset. If you use natural stone, the bullnoses are harder to come by, so it might jack the price up - especially if he has to grind his own.

    4. Speaking of thinset, if your tiler wants to use mastic instead of thinset, it'll tell you that he doesn't do this often. NEVER use mastic in a wet location.
  3. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,129
    Location:
    New England
    I'll second www.johnbridge.com. The most important part of a shower is the guts...building it right. The tile are a pretty face and have little to do with the operation.

    Never install tile without groutlines. A small one is needed, or crud will build up in the cracks. The liner must be on a sloped bed for it to work right. If your plumber or you installed a liner flat on the floor, that's your first major mistake...

    Stone looks pretty, but does take more maintenance.
  4. gfe76

    gfe76 New Member

    Messages:
    88
    Location:
    Florida
    thanks so very much. I know nothing about tile work, so your thoughts were helpful. This guy works for a large construction company that finishes off high rise, high end office buildings...he does the bathrooms. I have seen his work and it looks good (but don't know if it is good, if that makes sense). He does this residential work "on the side".
    He is also going to install an access panel (16" x 16") in the ceiling of shower to get to shut off valves and tile the rest of the ceiling.
  5. minimum grout between tiles depends on your buying rectified tiles, cut after they are cooked.

    you would enjoy epoxy grout.

    david
  6. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,129
    Location:
    New England
    A shower that looks good is no indication that the guts are done right. educate yourself on how it should be done so you can ask intelligent questions and spot deficiencies.
  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    tile

    he works cheap. I charge more than that for one day.
  8. gfe76

    gfe76 New Member

    Messages:
    88
    Location:
    Florida
    thanks again. I am trying to educate myself and I agree the devil is in the details and I want it to be done correctly more than look good.
    this guy may be cheap but he comes highly recommended by several people.
    I really appreciate all the help. Is there a thread on here that can educate me on the basics of a job like this so i can ask some intellingent questions.
  9. prashster

    prashster New Member

    Messages:
    941
    go to www.johnbridge.com. It's a tiling forum with people as helpful and experienced in their trade as the pros are here. If I were you, I'd lurk there for an education. Then start yr own project thread and post lotsa pix.
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