Friday, June 8, 2012

Tub Surround: Cement Board & Waterproofing.

Cement board. Such a wonderful invention. But the stuff is such a pain to work with...

After doing the bathroom floor and the floor by the back door, Bill figured he needed this fancy cutting tool. Really it's not fancy and I don't think it even cost that much, probably around $10. But cutting the cement board is basically scoring it many, many times and than karate chopping it so it breaks at your seam, flipping it over and cutting it again until it comes apart.

It's also messy. There are still chunks of it in my vehicle from transporting it... it makes a mess when you cut it. It makes a mess when you carry it through your house. And it makes a mess when you're screwing it in because dust falls out of it and what not.

It sort of stinks. Not in a horrible way. In a weird sort of soapy type of way. We sort of accidentally left everything in my car after we bought it for a couple days because it was about to rain when we got home from purchasing it and we just really wanted to eat dinner... but then when I went to go to the gym a day and a half later, it smelled. And sometimes, I can still smell it. And then it smelled when we brought it in the house and put it up, but that scent was soon covered up by the other ones.

It dries out your hands, a lot. The cement sucks up any moisture in your hands that exists and makes them feel, for the lack of a better word, yucky. I applied lotion probably 872 times the weekend we did this.

Back to installation. We were able to get one wall of cement board up on Friday night. It ended up being late and felt bad for making so much noise outside (our neighbor's bedroom window was right by where we were working).

We spent a lot of time trying to decide on doing one of those niches in the wall for bottles and what not. We ended up not going it. We would have had to do some reframing in the wall and it happens to also be the wall where the electrical comes into the house, so.... I don't even know how we would have dealt with that. Because we weren't doing that we decided we would splurge on a new fixture set. Something pretty...

After a trip to Home Depot and purchasing a very wonderful Kohler set for about $175. We went home, Bill unboxed it. We would have had to re-plumb everything. And being an older house it would have been a TON of work to just get the old out. We went back to Home Depot. Luckily, we found our tile section friend to be working (not a real friend, just someone who works there that happens to be awesome). He identified our current fixture brand set and told us how maybe we could purchase the same brand and it could fit or that we could buy replacements that have adapters to fit many brands. Long story short... we do not have new fixtures. We did buy a large jug of CLR and cleaned up the old stuff really well. So, it's shiny and pretty now.

Anyways, due to a grad party, many trips to home depot and still needing to finish cement board and time, we only got the cement board done on Saturday. I did actually get the waterproofing paint stuff started.

Bill insisted that we do some sort of water proofing. And we went away from the fabric kind because of time and inexperience. We only have the one bathroom.... the one tub.... the one place to shower. We also wanted to use a pre-mixed mortar and non of the fabric ones work with that. Something about there being 'glue' in premixed and that it allows it to expand and contract and you can't have that movement or something along those lines.

Sunday morning, I couldn't sleep anymore because I was too concerned with all of the things that still needed to be done. So, I got up well before Bill and finished up painting on the waterproofing stuff.

This picture shows it still wet - all the lighter, shinier areas.

And then we let that dry...


Edit: I just wanted to add that we were super lucky to have a brand new window in the bathroom. We think it was installed right before the house was put on the market. So, everything is vinyl, no wood. I'm going guess it was professionally installed, so we sort of assumed it was all good in terms of being water tight. There were also no signs of any water or water damage, besides some really old stuff that was probably the reason for the new window.

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