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How to Install Schluter KERDI-BOARD: Part 2

Waterproof Your Shower Like a Pro

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How to Install Schluter KERDI-BOARD Part 2

Today you’ll learn how to install Schluter KERDI-BOARD.

This is Part 2 of our series on waterproofing with KERDI-BOARD.

Most people believe they don’t have the skills to remodel a bathroom.

Are they right?

Well, to be honest…no.

Here’s the deal:

I’ll be the first to tell you that bathroom remodeling isn’t a cake walk.

The thing is, skills are just ONE piece of the renovation puzzle.

In today’s tutorial we’re going to reveal all the Pro tips to installing KERDI-BOARD

Getting Started 

We don’t glaze over details.

In Fact:

I called Schluter to make sure our tutorial met their standards!!

That’s how we roll my friend.

Today we finish the Schluter KERDI-BOARD installation.

Finishing KERDI-BOARD

We promise you can do this project

If you missed Part 1 you can check it out here

How to Install Schluter KERDI-BOARD Part 1

Here are the supplies you need

 

Thin-Set Tips

All the seams and screws on the KERDI-BOARD need to be sealed with KERDI-BAND.

We recommend you cut your KERDI-BAND for corners and the tub surround first.

Cutting KERDI-BAND

Steve likes using Ardex X77 thin-set to embed the KERDI-BAND.

Ardex X77

But here’s the deal:

Ardex X77 is modified thin-set.

Schluter recommends unmodified thin-set when setting KERDI-BAND.

That said, Ardex will warranty it’s product if used with KERDI-BOARD. So keep that in mind.

X77 is awesome for setting both mosaics and large format tiles.

It’s bond strength holds the tiles in place without pressing down on the mosaics.

Steve explains this in the video tutorial.

Basically X77 makes your tiling easier!

Mix the X77 to a pancake batter consistency for the KERDI-BAND.

Thin Consistency of Ardex

This allows you to fully embed the KERDI-BAND into the KERDI-BOARD without large humps.

 

Starting the KERDI-BAND Installation

Start the KERDI-BAND installation by filling in the gap between the KERDI-BOARD and tub deck.

You can do this one of two ways.

Filling Tub Gap

Steve shows his method:

Fill the gap with X77 and embed the KERDI-BAND.

Schluter’s recommendation is different:

Fill the gap with KERDI-FIX, apply unmodified thin-set to KERDI-BOARD, then embed KERDI-BAND.

Schluter’s method upholds the Schluter warranty.

So keep that in mind when tackling the tub gap.

We don’t show the application of the KERDI-FIX but it’s simple.

Squeeze a bead of KERDI-FIX into the tub gap.

Smooth it with a 6 inch drywall knife.

Done.

Whichever method you choose we recommend using one continuous piece of KERDI-BAND for the tub to KERDI-BOARD transition.

One Piece of Kerdi Band

Make sure the corners are tight.

And squeeze out excess thin-set so that the KERDI-BAND is flush with the KERDI-BOARD.

This will make your tiling way easier.

Steve uses a 6 inch drywall knife to embed the KERDI-BAND into the KERDI-BOARD.

It’s not a bad idea to pull back the KERDI-BAND to make sure it’s getting enough thin-set.

Pulling Back Kerdi Band

You’ll have to put a hole in the KERDI-BAND for the tub spout.

Obviously this ruins the waterproofing.

To fix this, you can apply KERDI-FIX to the gap between the spout and KERDI-BAND.

Kerdi Fix for Tub Spout

Or you can use Schluter’s KERDI Pipe SealKerdi Pipe Seal

Once the tub to KERDI-BOARD transition is finished you can move on to the other seams and screw holes.

 

Waterproofing Corners, Seams and Screw Holes

Throughout the video you’ll get awesome tips.

Here’s one: apply thin-set to all seams in the same direction.

You’ll notice that Steve’s ridge marks all go in the same direction.

Applying Thin-Set to Corners

He applies the thin-set by any means necessary.

BUT then smooths it with his trowel in one direction before applying KERDI-BAND.

Applying KERDI BAND

Here’s a second tip: tackle the corners after the tub to KERDI-BOARD transition.

Steve likes to do this because corners are notorious for leaking.

So he overlaps the KERDI-BAND in the corners over the KERDI-BAND at the tub transition.

Overlapping Kerdi Band

If you have any wrinkles in the KERDI-BAND smooth them out.

If necessary, you can apply more thin-set under the wrinkle with your drywall knife.

Steve likes to do the corners then seams between KERDI-BOARDs.

Here’s a quick rundown of Steve’s strategy

  1. Apply KERDI-FIX to tub gap
  2. Apply unmodified thin-set to the KERDI-BOARD above the KERDI-FIX
  3. Embed one continuous piece of KERDI-BAND along the tub to KERDI-BOARD transition
  4. Apply unmodified thin-set to the corners and embed KERDI-BAND, overlap the tub/KERDI-BOARD transition by 2″
  5. Add unmodified thin-set to KERDI-BOARD horizontal seams and screws then embed KERDI-BAND
  6. Then apply unmodified thin-set to vertical KERDI-BOARD/wall seams and embed KERDI-BAND
  7. Tip 1: overlap KERDI-BAND transitions by at least 2 inches and smooth all wrinkles
  8. Tip 2: sponge off excess unmodified thin-set to create a smooth tiling surface
  9. Tip3: remove thin-set from adjacent drywall or plaster

Check out the video for all the details

 

What’s Next

KERDI-BOARD is a fantastic option for waterproofing a shower.

Grab our free guide if you’re doing a DIY bathroom remodel – it shares how to remodel a bathroom in 10 days or less

Send Me The Guide

 

Thanks as always for reading, watching, and being part of our awesome community.

Ask your questions below and we’d be happy to help.

Cheers,

Jeff Patterson

 

 

 

 

P.S. Our online store has great supplies for homeowners doing a bathroom remodel. You’ll find shower systems, tiling tools, and more.

31 Comments
  1. Kim says:

    Oh, oh, oh! I so want to rip out that jetted tub in our bathroom and enlarge our small shower to include more space and a built in bench. This Kerdi board is great!

    1. KERDI-BOARD is perfect for building custom benches Kim. Schluter has several tutorials on how to do it 😀

  2. Sue says:

    I’m working on the courage to tear out our tub and surround and replace it with a walk-in shower. Our bathroom is very small and if you’re dealing with injuries or pain issues the walk-in will be easier than stepping into or out of a tub. I can’t wait to see your videos on this!

    1. You’re in luck Sue, in two weeks Steve is going to build a walk-in shower.

      We’re going to film it and share via HRT.

      So get ready for some juicy details on this project 😀

  3. Renee Pedersen says:

    We have a shower unit that is 17 years old. While it does still look pretty good, I would like to take it out and make the overall area of the shower larger. This time I would tile the area instead of using a surround. So Kerdi-board would fit the bill for that remodel!

    1. It’ll be an easier project if you use KERDI-BOARD Renee.

      Are you going to do a walk-in shower?

  4. Brenda Cook says:

    This sounds perfect. I really need to replace the walls surrounding my bathtub. Ideally what I would eventually like to do is take out the tub and replace it with just a shower. This makes me believe that I can do it myself. WOOHOO!!!

    1. You can do it Brenda,

      like I mentioned to Sue above, we’ll be shooting a video on this kind of project.

      It’ll be up in a few months…or sooner if you need it 😀

  5. jeff says:

    I ripped out my bathtub and fiberglass surround to fix a different problem. Now that I have the original problem fixed I need to finish the bathroom. I plan on using the Kerdi-board to build a walk-in shower. I want to add a small bench and a niche in the shower. I also want to build a half wall on the entrance side and have glass on the upper half. I have no clue what I’m doing but I’m learning real quick. I plan on using all the kerdi-products to make a shower that I can rest my mind knowing I won’t have any problems.

    1. That’s awesome Jeff, we will have several videos available on Bathroom Repair Tutor that might help you.

      Maybe we can edit those videos quickly and get them available.

      I’ll shoot you an email and see where you are with your project and how we can help you

  6. Effie says:

    They are excellent. I like them very much.
    Is there any way I can download these video for my future, or friends?

    1. Thanks Effie, these videos are available on YouTube or on our membership site Bathroom Repair Tutor.

      If you’re doing a bathroom remodel you might like Bathroom Repair Tutor because it comes with the videos and help from Steve & me 😀

      Here’s the link but let me know if you have questions

      https://bathroomrepairtutor.com/

  7. Gina G says:

    I’m shopping for a fixer-upper right now. Some of the bathrooms have been pretty atrocious. Maybe if I can do this, the teens won’t mutiny!

    1. Lol, you can do this yourself. But put those teens to work Gina, haha.

      They can help and learn a few things. Plus, it’ll move faster with extra hands.

      Let me know how we can help once you find your fixer-upper 😀

  8. Allegra Heidelinde says:

    We literally have a tub with no surround….we’ve been nervous to start. I’ve watched the videos and your tutorials make Kerdi-Board seem very user friendly – even for first timers like us! Thank you.

    1. Glad to help any time Allegra.

      Once you get started it moves along pretty fast.

      Steve and I can always help you with your project 😀

  9. Eric H says:

    I’d demo my floor, tear off the baseboards, rip out the adhesive fiberglass shower surround, replace with Kerdiboard, and retile it all starting with the shower. I’d also change out the 3 valve shower system for a single valve system and since I’m spending money anyway, might as well replace the single for a double vanity. Probably go with a light blue-gray/sable color for the walls and a dark faux wood porcelain tiles for the floor. Shower might be tiled in light gray. We’ll see…

    1. You’ve got a good plan in place Eric.

      I like those combinations. You should post some pics over on the Bathroom Repair Tutor private facebook group. We’d be happy to provide suggestions.

      I know you’re up to your neck in work but you’ve got a good start for your remodel.

  10. Bob says:

    Hi if you use kerdi board and u seal the bottom of the board and tub with kerdie band how does any water get out from behind the tile if it does happen to get in some where.do you not also silicone the bottom of the tiles to the tub
    Thanks
    Bob

  11. Jardar says:

    Just a tip for the corners. The kerdi-board can be scored on the back side and then you can bend it to a 90 degree angle without breaking the membrane on the front side. That’ll save the hassle of having to install kerdi-band in the corners.

    1. Thanks Jardar for the tip, they actually gave me a similar piece of advice for a sloped wall. But I ended up using two boards anyway because of the size of the surround.

  12. Suzanne Rossiter says:

    Love your site…what size should the kerdi band be to cover the screws and washers? We have about 180 of them lol. I thought I read somewhere 4″ x 5″ but would like to do 3″ x 5″ trust your opinion!

    1. I can’t remember what Schluter recommends but 4×5″ is typically what we use. As long as the KERDI-BAND is covering the screw and washer you should be good. I’d love to see your shower!!!

  13. Bob says:

    What was the dried dark material already on there that appeared to be transition material (caulk???)? It was on the tub deck and in the transition to the drywall. Great video by the way.

  14. Mel says:

    Very helpful video! I am curious though, how to make the transition from the top of the kerdi board to a ceiling that is drywalled (will be painted)? Thanks!

  15. Joel Cason says:

    Wonderful videos!! Do you know if anyone has built a shower using the KBRS shower pan and Kerdi board?

  16. Eric says:

    Do you add some sort of fiber tape in between seams/under the kerdi-band to add rigidity between the seams or does the dried thinset/kerdi-band provide enough support for the seams?

    1. Hey Eric, good question. All the studs should be 16″ on-center and that’s enough support for the boards. The thin-setting of joints and application of KERDI-BAND is only for waterproofing purposes. Use unmodified thin-set for that or Schluter’s ALL-SET to maintain Schluter’s warranty.

  17. Jackie says:

    Kerdi board is amazing! We’re DIY-ers so we’re fairly handy but this is our first real bathroom tear out. My husband discovered Kerdi board and convinced me it was the way to go instead of traditional cement board. Wow, was he right! It installs easily and it’s practically fool-proof! You’re tutorials we’re great for having practical tops for installation. Thanks!!

  18. Morgan says:

    After gutting a small en suite down to the studs I worked first on the non-wet area of the bathroom. I felt comfortable doing everything but will definitely hire muscle to do the drywall next time. To do the small but tall shower stall I’m going with Kerdi-Board, including their shower pan. I was ready to do a sloped mortar pan myself but having found Kerdi – just no. I came here to find out if I should put the ceiling in first or the walls, which I did not find the answer to, but your tips are all good. i’m actually looking forward to doing the larger central hall bathroom!

  19. Tony says:

    Hi, Jeff. I’m installing 1/2″ Kerdi board on a wooden frame in my bathroom. The boards are reaching all the way to the ceiling drywall. Do I use the Kerdi tape and thin set where the Kerdi board joins the ceiling drywall?

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