Tiling the sides of a fiberglass tub

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Old 03-01-15, 07:56 AM
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Tiling the sides of a fiberglass tub

The master bathroom in my house has a gardentub that is surrounded by three walls, and I am thinking about tiling the front side of the tub and also the backsplash that is on the three walls around the tub. I would leave the top of the tub white.

I'm not exactly sure how to do the tile on the front of the tub. If I put it directly on the front of the tub, then it will stick out further than the top of the tub sticks out. Could I cut the front of the tub away, build a wall that's recessed underthe tub as far as the depth of concrete board + my tiles?

Any help is appreciated. I'm not at home right now to get a picture of my tub, but I was able to find a house for sale in my neighborhood that has the same tub (same builder). I've attached the pic of their tub:

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Old 03-01-15, 08:19 AM
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Tile on the walls is not a problem, while it should be cement board, it is a tub only and will not get any splash as if someone takes a shower. Personally, I have a pet peeve about tile over drywall, but that is me. As a pro, I will only do it one way, and that is over cement board.

Tile to the front of the tub will not work, it is not a good surface for tile. Cutting away the front of the tub is a disaster waiting to happen. While the weight of the tub should be on the base of the tub itself, we do not know how it is installed and there may be some load bearing on the front skirt. Not likely, but don't know.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 08:23 AM
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How are you going to prevent water from getting between the tiles & the tub?
 
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Old 03-01-15, 08:59 AM
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I was planning that if I cut away the front skirt of the tub, I would construct a wall with 2x3s (doubt 2x4s would fit) behind where the skirt was. Then cover the wall with concrete board and tile it to where the tile is even with the top edge of the tub. Then grout and seal the tile. Would this work?
 
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Old 03-01-15, 09:03 AM
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I agree with czizzi 100%.
Only right way would be to remove the whole tub and replace with a drop in tub.
Then you could tile the front if you covered the framing with tile board.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 09:08 AM
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I don't think that it would last. Eventually the water would work it's way inside, between the cement board & the tub or between the cement board & the tile. Wait for other opinions.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 09:52 AM
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Wait for other opinions.
Implies that none of the prior responses were accurate.

Tile the walls all day long.

If you want to build the false wall in FRONT of the current skirt you could, I think it would look a little goofy, but you could. Mainly because drop in tubs are usually put on decks a little taller than what you have there. Make it so the tile returns back across the top and meets the tub around 3/8" from the top. Then use a good sealant along the joint where it meets the tub.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:02 AM
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What I'd really like to do (and my wife wants this) is take the tub out completely and build a large custom shower in its place. Then rip out our current shower and expand the closet in to it's place. But I have a friend who sells real estate and she says no tub in a master bath is a big no-no for resale purposes. I'm not planning to sell anytime soon, but that's a thought in the back of my head for one day down the road. I've been in the house 6 years and that tub has been used maybe 3 times.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:08 AM
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You want to have at least one tub in the house, not necessarily the master. A huge walk in shower is a current trend. Dual (his and hers) showers, multi-function showers, body sprays or bench seating are more the fashion. Everyone I speak to who has a large tub or jetted tub, never uses it.

Kind of like the exercise room my wife insisted I outfit. Used 3 or 4 times -
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:09 AM
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No, I do not think grouting the top edge of tile with the tub will work. They are dissimilar materials so if you've gotta go that route I'd use a color matched caulk. Still, I think it would be difficult to get a nice, professional looking finished edge if you try to tile the front skirt of the tub. Even if you were able to cut the skirt I think a neat top edge, the most visible part, will be difficult to achieve and end up looking like a DIY job trying to conceal something with caulk.

A good compromise would be to tile the three walls surrounding the tub. While you might get away will applying the tile directly to the sheetrock I think the likelihood of it sticking well is diminished by the existing paint. Best would be as czizzi suggested and cut out the sheetrock where you want to tile and replace it with cement board or Hardiebacker.

In the end just own the tub. It is what it is. Do a good tone match with your tub surround tile and floor could do wonders especially if you also consider painting the walls.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:17 AM
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The tub in your representative picture doesn't look like it has a shower.
Do you have a separate shower in the same room ?
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:32 AM
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Implies that none of the prior responses were accurate.

No. Wait for other opinions implies to wait for other opinions.

Any sealant will last for awhile, maybe even for some years but sooner or later, it will fail & have to be redone. At the moment, that tub is maintenance free apart from cleaning. That's the way I like things to be. If I never have to touch it again, I win.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 10:49 AM
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The tub in your representative picture doesn't look like it has a shower.
Do you have a separate shower in the same room ?

Read more: http://www.doityourself.com/forum/wa...#ixzz3T9pEfecP


Yes, the tub and shower and separate units. By the way, the picture is not my house, it's just the same tub.
 
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Old 03-01-15, 12:29 PM
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There is no way I would try cutting out the front of the tub or tiling directly to the existing. For the cost of a drop in tub, that is the way to go. You will be gald you did it 3 years down the road when everytthing is still in place and not cracking or falling off.
 
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