How to Tile a Shower

Tiling a shower personalizes your toilet. All aspects of the tile shower are your choice : tile type, size, tiled vs. premade shower pan, and even extras like cubbies, shelves, and seats. When your tiled shower is done, it will be a sincerely singular creation that reflects you .

When you tile your own exhibitor, you save considerable money over hiring professional tile workers. Tiling a moisture area is a highly hearty do-it-yourself project that rewards patience and attention to contingent .


Because of the importance of waterproofing in this project, it ‘s best left to accredited contractors with proper permits or only experienced DIYers. Whoever completes this project, it ‘s crucial to have the shower wall and shower pan inspected subsequently to ensure the waterproof is done correctly.

When to Tile a shower

A crack tile or two can be replaced. Poor or discolored grout alone normally is n’t cause to retile the shower, as grout can be tinted, repaired, or replaced. But when much of the existing shower tile is cracked, missing, or leaking water, it may be clock to tile your shower walls and floors .

During a toilet remodel, tiling the exhibitor normally happens after the board has been stripped or demolished, basic plumbing and electrical services have been installed, and walls framed. After the shower has been tiled, the bathroom floor and cabinets are installed and the walls are painted .

Before You Begin

Tiling a shower is a major undertake for most do-it-yourselfers. indeed, consider your shower tile project within the context of your bathroom as a solid .


Do you besides want tile on the toilet floor and walls ? Bathroom floor tile and wall tile are discriminate projects from tiling the shower, as they often use different tile materials and have different waterproofing needs. even sol, it ‘s helpful to incorporate them in these early plan stages so you can coordinate styles.


Budget enough time so that you can work at a slow but steady tempo. Rushing tile work is n’t advisable because it ‘s thus unmanageable to back the errors out. You besides can not speed up tile work because you need to build in sufficient wait clock for tile grout and mortar to fully dry .

Bathing Facilities

Have option bathe facilities lined up before you start tiling. The shower will be out of commission for at least one week—likely longer .

Staging Area for Materials

If you have available distance outside of the bathroom, use it to store build up materials. Creating a staging area outside of the toilet is crucial because you will need the toilet deck to lay out the tile before applying it to the shower .

Open the tile boxes immediately to check for damage, then close them back up for protection. Store angel board and plywood on edge. water from the besotted tile saw can damage floors, therefore locate the see outdoors or in a garage, if possible .

Tile Alternatives

Tiling a shower is n’t a agile, easy specify. If you just need a basic, serviceable shower, pre-fabricated shower units made of acrylic or fiberglass install quickly, are normally reasonably priced, and have no initiation waiting periods. Pre-fab units work well if you do n’t mind sticking with predetermined sizes and styles .

character of Tile to Use for Showers

Shower tile should meet or exceed waterproof specifications for both the walls and the floor. For the floor, the tile should provide enough bag to stand on when showering .

Shower Wall Tile

Any tile expressly labeled as being porcelain tile can be used for shower walls. Porcelain tile has a water absorption rate of 0.5 percentage or lower—essentially, it is waterproof .

You can identify porcelain tile by the Porcelain Tile Certification Agency ( PTCA ) trademark on boxes and product literature. On its web site, the PTCA maintains a list of Certified Product Lines .

porcelain is n’t the only type of tile you can use in a exhibitor. Most glaze ceramic tile can be used on shower walls. Glass tile is n’t ceramic or porcelain, yet it ‘s an excellent shower tile for its bright semblance register, near-zero body of water assimilation rate, and easy cleanability .


tile water absorption rates, DCOF slip resistance, break potency, and PEI abrasion resistance ratings are listed by tile manufacturers on the specification tabloid. You ‘ll find these sheets on manufacturer or retailer sites or on product literature. Some manufacturers ‘ sites help you filter out tiles that do not meet specifications for shower walls and floors.

Shower Floor Tile

With urine and soap underfoot, shower shock tile can get slippery and dangerous. so, you want your shower floor tile to provide adequate grapple for bare feet .

The coefficient of friction, or COF, is a standard for evaluation how slippery any item is. In the tile industry, this is normally called the DCOF wet prey or measure .

Shower floor tile should have a DCOF rate of equal to or greater than 0.42. This is the standard for department of the interior level tiles that are expected to be walked upon when wet. Higher numbers mean greater err resistance .

different factors can affect slip resistance. For exemplar, some mosaic tiles may have poor slip resistance, but the big number of wide grout lines provides clash for bare feet .

build or Adding a Shower Pan

While this undertaking assumes that a fully plumbed, operable shower pan is in place, you may want a new shower pan. You can either build a shower pan from scrape with tile and mortar or you can use a pre-built shower pan .

  • Tiled Shower Pan: You can build a shower pan with shower floor tile, layering a base of mortar to create a slope that moves water toward a central drain. While this method affords you the most creative freedom and has a sleeker look, there’s also a greater chance of water leakage.
  • Pre-Built Shower Pan: Even if you want to use tile on your shower walls, you can still pair the tile with a pre-built, single-piece fiberglass or acrylic shower pan. The look is plain and functional but the chance of water leakage is greatly reduced. Plus, it’s easier and faster to install. For many do-it-yourselfers, combining tile walls with a pre-built shower pan is the best of both worlds.

cost of Tiling a Basic Shower

The tile leverage comprises most of the cost of tiling the shower. tile prices greatly vary, ranging from $ 1 per square foundation for basic, glossy egg white metro tile to $ 50 to $ 75 per feather animal foot for couturier craftsman tile .

In general, estimate on about $ 5 to $ 10 per square foot for tile. Setting materials will cost another $ 4 to $ 6 per straight foot .

Because shower projects often uncover water wrong to the implicit in social organization, visualize in another $ 200 to $ 600 for any necessity do-it-yourself repairs .

base hit Considerations

  • Turn off all electrical circuits that service wires running through walls adjacent to the shower.
  • When using the wet tile saw, make sure that the water is fully bathing the cutting area before you begin cutting.
  • Water not only holds down dust, it also partially helps to prevent tile chips from shooting back at you.
  • Use eye, hearing, and breathing protection when cutting tile or when demolishing the existing shower.

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