Problem fitting tub into alcove (too much extra room)

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by user847, Jan 15, 2017.

  1. user847

    user847 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan
    I am remodeling my master bathroom and having some issues with the bathtub fitting into the alcove. It's a standard 60x30 bathtub, and there's about an inch of play in between the walls for the length of the tub:

    [​IMG]

    I've pushed the tub all the way up against one wall, the wall opposite the shower fixtures. The wall opposite the shower fixtures is not plumb, so the back end of the tub is touching the stud at the corner of the wall, but the front of the tub is not touching the wall:

    [​IMG]


    On this wall, where the tub is touching the stud, I only need to use one 1/4" furring strip to get my backer board over the tub flange, but on the front of the tub where the tub is not touching the stud, I would need to build the wall out with at least one or two more furring strips. Doing this would build the wall up too high here though, and make it so the hardie to drywall transition would be too uneven to work with (estimate 3/4"+ height difference with the finished tile on it), as well as having my finished tile possibly stick out higher than my door molding:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The last 2 pictures are showing how the wall would be IF I fixed the issue of the wall opposite the shower not being plumb by furring out one side of the wall more. Obviously that's not a good solution. My only real idea here is to pull the hardie down off the walls (I have hardie up on the back shower wall only right now), pull the tub out again, and cut a notch into the only stud the tub is touching on the wall opposite the shower so that I can recess the tub into the wall, so that all edges of the tub are touching a stud.

    This idea would solve my issue with THIS wall but would create another issue on the wall with the shower fixtures. Even before thinking about recessing the tub into the stud, this wall already would need to be built out with 2 1/4" furring strips and a sheet of 1/2 inch hardie just to be EVEN with the tub flange. Recessing the wall back into the stud would be that I'd need to build that wall up with at least one extra 1/2 hardie board, so that'd be 2 furring strips and 3 total boards of 1/2 hardie to clear the tub flange. Further compounding the problem is the position of the shower valve/handle. It would need to come out more to the interior of the tub (rather than pushed back into the wall) to clear all those extra boards of hardie, and that might be pushing the limits of how far that thing is meant to move. Even if I could get it to move in the position I want, since it moved so much, I bet the angle of the tub spout would be way off now.

    These pictures show the wall opposite the shower and how much the wall needs to be built up already, BEFORE thinking about recessing the tub into the stud:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    So I don't know what to do at this point. I'm stuck and can't move forward with my project until I figure this issue out. Suggestions?
     
  2. dj2

    dj2 In the Trades

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2013
    Location:
    California
    Generally, you want to work on the walls first, to bring them to the maximum plumb possible and to avoid any misfits. Use strips and shims. HD sells 1/16" strips of cardboard (near the drywall section), good for fixing crooked walls.
    Just be careful not to build it up too much and restrict the bath space.
    Send pics when you finish.
     
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  4. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    I would find a happy medium through shimming out both walls. It will take some extra work, but it may be worth stripping the crooked wall between the corner and the door opening and straightening it out. Sometimes a couple of whacks with a sledge and some new screws to keep it in place is all that needs to be done. It is cheaper to fix it now than to regret it later.
     
  5. MNshowerdude2

    MNshowerdude2 not to be confused with showerdude, im showerdude2

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2017
    Location:
    Minnesota
    couple whacks with a sledge hammer...... oh my
     
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  6. user847

    user847 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan
    Thanks for the reply guys. I know to build the walls out with shims, had already done that a little before posting. Menards sells some 1/4" furring strips, which HD and Lowes apparently don't sell. All they have is a 3/4" furring strip. I ended up notching the stud so I could recess the tub into the wall a little, just enough so that the tub is touching all studs on that wall. Worked perfectly, it's nice and plumb now. On the wall with the shower fixtures, I had to use 1 1/4" furring strip, a 3/4" furring strip, and some roofing felt to get everything nice and even. Had to push the plumbing fixtures out more with some wooden blocking behind it in order to have enough clearance past my hardie board though, hope there isn't too much pressure on the piping now.

    My problem now is that I didn't build the wall with the shower fixtures out wide enough to lay that narrow strip of tile along side the tub. To be honest, I don't really like the look of that and was hoping to make things as flush as possible. I laid my hardie and tile along the wall here to try and see how it'd look and just figured it wouldn't be a problem finding some sort of trim piece that would look good here, but so far I'm finding that's not the case. Is there any other option other than ripping down my existing hardie on that wall and adding another stud to build the wall out more? Do they make a trim piece (plastic, rubber, etc) that could be used in the corner between the tub and the edges of that wall, and caulked in place?

    FYI, I plan on using 12x24 tiles laid horizontally, staggered 1/2 or 1/3. Wall will be roughly 6" wide.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Old shower has the small strip of tile along the tub
    [​IMG]
     
  7. user847

    user847 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan
    I found this:

    trim.JPG

    https://www.architecturaldepot.com/...ppcstrkid=1115274693&ppcsu=xhg7f5djqtopedhcra

    Looks like it would be about the right size, and I don't see how that would look bad at all. I could caulk in place for a watertight seal I would think.

    But's that's my opinion, what do you guys think? I'm selling the house in a year or two, so I don't want something that's going to stick out like a sore thumb. I highly doubt the average home buyer is going to say "wow, where's that narrow strip of tile next to the tub"?
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2017
  8. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    If it is a shower you are building, you must install a waterproof layer between the tile and the backerboard. This can be a brush and roller applied material like Redguard, or a sheet good like Kerdi.

    Personally, I would bump the end of the wall out further. Measure out your tiles to help determine how far to bump it out. It is ideal if you never have to cut a tile smaller that 1/2 of it's uncut size.
     
  9. user847

    user847 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan
    Yes I plan on using redgard for my membrane. I used it in my other bathroom I remodeled last year and it worked great. The shower I did in my last bathroom was set up differently though and I'm running into new issues here that I didn't face in the last one, such as this wall.

    I really don't want to bump the wall out but may end up doing that in the long run. Haven't picked out the tile yet, but will probably do 12x24. How much would I have to bump the wall out for that look right with tiles that size? After the tile is laid on the floor, the height of the tub will be about 12" so it'd at least be just one tile high.

    Questions about the wall, the part facing perpendicular to the tub that's 6 inches wide. I still haven't decided whether to tile or drywall this. When I tile my floor, I was planning on using the matching bullnose tile around the baseboard of the walls. Not sure yet whether to do different tile on the floor then the shower, but assuming I do use do different tile on floor and shower, would I put the bullnose along the baseboard of the 6" wall and then tile down that wall with the shower tile (assuming I tile it) or just tile all the way to the floor with the shower tile? If I tile to the floor there with shower tile, around the corner of the 6" wall the bullnose tile would start and that'd look weird. Any opinions on how to approach this wall?

    I think the look of mitered edges are nice if I do tile the 6 inch wall. Can I miter them with my regular tile saw? I have a 7" Rigid wet saw from HD. Any info on how to actually cut those mitered edges if I go that route?
     
  10. user847

    user847 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan
    I've been doing more thinking on this and have concluded that for ease of the project, drywall is probably easiest on the 6 inch wall. That way I don't have to worry about different tile potentially joining up in this area. I still have some questions on how to approach this wall and the corners.

    I've been reading about outside corners where drywall and hardie meet for a while now and seme to be getting nowhere. So much conflicting info. Do I run my hardie board all the way to the left edge of the wall with the shower fixtures on it, or do I stop the hardie 1-2" before the left edge and put drywall here? I've read this will make it easy to do my corner, then it would be drywall to drywall. I'd have bullnose tile on this left edge of the shower fixture wall covering the drywall/hardie joint. Redgard is going over all this for my waterproofing membrane. Does this sound right? If I can't do the hardie/drywall joint under the bullnose because it's still considered a wet area, then how do I prep the corner where the hardie meets the drywall? Tile with bullnose to the edge of the hardie wall and then float the gap on the 6" wall with joint compound?

    Then I keep reading to use a metal corner, paper corner, J bead, L bead, etc. I have no idea which one to choose because I've read recommendations to do all. Sounds like you don't use any of them if you float the gap between the bullnose edge and the drywall on the 6" wall with joint compound, but confused about this from the descriptions I've read online.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2017
  11. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    I wouldn't overcomplicate it too much. Backerboard out past the end of the outside corner so it will overlap the drywall edge and dress the corner with thinset and tape just like you would any other seam. Waterproof the corner and set your tile. Once that is all done, then finish by smoothing out the outer strip of drywall with drywall compound.
    I would stick with the plastic cornerbead in a bathroom, as the excessive moisture produced in the room over time can bleed rust off a metal bead.
     
    user847 likes this.
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