Bath/Tile remodel

3 Replies

This is my first turnover on my duplex and I want to remodel a small bathroom (about 6x8). It's tiled half up the walls and the floor. It's an old house (1926) and probably hasn't had the bath done since the 70's. The wall tile is light pink and sky blue ... The blue being painted over the pink. The floor is probably older than that with the small octagonal white tile ... Some if it is missing. It's all not cared for well and in bad shape.

Now, should I just buck up and do it right ... As in have someone come in, tear it out, and redo entirely as I've never done tile before? The people at HD suggested Allure planks for the floor and prime (gripper)/repaint the ugly wall tile. The Allure idea is alluring ( bad pun intended), but the molding around the floor is tile as well. I don't know what I'd do to cover the expansion gap.


This kind of tile on the wall is one of the most annoying to remove. There is the tile, then about an 1"-1.5" of concrete that is held up and together by a very sharp metal mesh. It's very strong and to take a hammer to bash up the tile tends to also damage the plaster/drywall in the adjacent rooms. You need a 7" angle grinder along with hammers, and pry bars to remove the tile successfully. I have done this many times and recommend if removing the wall tile you take the plaster/drywall on the walls above the tile off too. Just re-drywall all of the bathroom walls, because seaming the old plaster with then new drywall  isn't easy or worth the time. Tends to be different thicknesses everywhere and you'll need furring strips... not worth it. 

You can re paint the tile with the kits they sell at home depot. This will temporarily make it look better but probably only last 2 years max before scratches and chips show the blue and pink. I recommend just taking the walls out. In the long run I think you would be happy you did.

As for the floor you can lay ceramic tile on top of the existing ceramic tile. Yes it will raise the floor higher than the floor outside of the bathroom, but only about 7/8". You can buy thresholds for this to make it look ok. 

If you did decide to leave the walls and lay ceramic tile on the floor, get the tile as close as possible to the wall and use grout caulk that matches the grout to fill the seam. 

I have also seen People liquid nail wainscot to the wall tile and put a brick mold on top as a chair rail to cover the gap. The only issue with is the wall tile probably goes into the shower. You would then have to reglaze or repaint the shower tile and tub.

Hope this helps

@Donovan H.

I own a home in a similar condition and was forced to reno when a tiny leak turned into a huge problem. I used the Allure vinyl planks which I put in myself and will never look back again. In fact, I ended up running it in a kitchen as well. For the gap I ended up filling with foam and then putting a decent base board down. No gap and a great looking floor that's holding up very well. It's been in for one year now and it still looks like the day I put it in.

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