How to Waterproof a Shower Using Wedi (Step-by-Step)

How to Waterproof a Shower Using Wedi (Step-by-Step)


So what’s one of the fastest ways to waterproof
a shower? Well, in our opinion it’s the WEDI method using WEDI building panels. Now
that’s not the only option out there, but if you want to learn how to waterproof a shower
fast and easily and do it to make it rock solid, then WEDI is a great option for you.
So today we’re going to show you how to use the WEDI Tub Surround Kit to waterproof
a shower surround, and in the end it’s going to be a lot easier for you to do after you
watch our tips and tricks. So make sure you watch the video the whole way through because
we’re going to have other information for you at the end that might be very helpful.
This is the WEDI Tub Surround Kit, and what it entails is five sheets of the board—3×5
sheets. So this is enough to do a typical tub surround with an 8 ft ceiling. It gives
you five tubes of the sealant for everything. And it gives you the washers and screws—100
of each. So this will give you more than enough to waterproof your tub surround.
Another option that you can also purchase—this is in addition to the Tub Surround Kit—is
a premade niche. This one is 16” x 22” premade niche. And then this is if you wanted
to tile a shelf, you can do that. But in our scenario, we’re actually just going to install
it this way, just a kind of elongated shelf. Now it does say 16” x 22” but that’s
actually the full dimension of the actual unit. The actual inside dimension is 12”
x 18”. So keep that in mind when you purchase this that you’re not actually getting space
for your niche at 16”. You’re actually getting 12” x 18”.
Before you install the niche, you’ll want to plan the tile layout of the tub surround
or the shower surround. In this case, we mounted the niche about 24 to 30 inches above the
tub—that’s a standard height for a niche. And we made the tiles be split evenly with
the height of the niche. As you see here, Steve made an L-notch for the tiles above
and below the niche. And this is what it looked like when it was finished. So as you can see
here, we planned that out to make sure the grout joint was right in the middle of the
niche. The next step is to cut the studs if you have
a similar configuration. We used a circular saw first, then a Sawzall. And make sure that
the stud wall is not load-bearing before you do this. That’s very, very important. But
we’re cutting out the studs so that we can fit in the niche. What Steve is doing here
is adding a 2×4 using two 3 inch deck screws per 2×4 to mount it in place. So he’s got
his 2×4 above and below the existing structure, places the niche in it to make sure that it’s
centered, and then taps in 2x4s in this direction instead of the traditional direction so that
he can put in his backer board right next to the prefabricated niche. So again, just
using two 3 inch deck screws per stud for the installation makes for a solid installation.
So there you go. Now you give yourself a little bit of wiggle room when you do this, and make
sure that the niche is actually centered. The next step is to tack ¼ inch pieces of
plywood to that back wall. Now we’re using a roofing nailer. You don’t have to use
a roofing nailer. You can just use 2 inch deck screws. And the reason why we’re tacking
this ¼ plywood to the stud walls so that we can drop the panel over the tub lip. After
you do that, you want to apply a nice bead of WEDI joint sealant to the tub lip so that
you then drop that WEDI panel over it. Now you’re going to have to notch out for the
tub lip as you can see here in the corner. But you’ll drop that panel over and then
mark the position of the studs on the panel and also the location of the niche on the
panel. That way you’ll be able to cut out for it. But that’s what Steve is doing here.
And then he applies his first screw six inches above the tub lip so that that lip doesn’t
blow out and adversely affect the tile job. Then you place your screws and washers every
8 to 12 inches after that. We used a Fine Multimaster oscillating multi-tool
to cut out the niche; it makes it so much easier and faster. But you can use a utility
knife as well. So as you can see here, Steve is just cutting that to size, applying a WEDI
joint sealant on top of the panel. So you want to do this for every single WEDI building
panel. This will seal the gap or the seam. There’s also one additional step we’ll
go over here in a second. But you place your second panel over top of the first one, and
then you pinch them together using screws and washers. Again, you want a screw and washer
every 8 to 12 inches on center on the studs as Steve is doing. And then you can rough
cut the rest of that shower niche location. So that’s what Steve is doing here for the
top panel. Then you place the prefabricated niche in
there, and then you just use it as a template to cut out more of the building panel to have
a perfect fit. And that’s really easy to do with that Multimaster. Then apply the WEDI
joint sealant to all the exposed blue material of the WEDI building panel, place your niche
in that recess, and then use a screw and a washer for every corner, like Steve is doing
here; it makes it a nice, solid installation. That niche isn’t going anywhere. Then again,
apply your screws and washers every 8 to 12 inches for that second panel. Apply WEDI joint
sealant on top of it. And then we had to add a little piece of WEDI building panel to complete
that main wall. The nice thing about WEDI building panels
is the ability to cut them using a utility knife. Steve’s cutting out this panel for
the plumbing wall. He’s placing this panel over top of the tub spout, pounding it mark
an indentation on the back, and then cutting out the location of the spout with a spade
bit. He did the exact same thing for the mixing valve, but just cut that out using a utility
knife. We’re using the iBox mixing valve, and it
comes with a black bracket which you want to be flush with the studs so that when you
put your WEDI panel over top of it, it will set the location of the tile to be within
a min-max zone. So Steve is applying the joint sealant to the corner there, and also to the
top of the tub lip or the tub lip itself. He’s also applying joint sealant to that
black bracket on the iBox and then compressing the WEDI building panel into all of that joint
sealant to make a nice, watertight seal for the shower. Then he’s installing his screws
and washers every 8 to 12 inches, just like he did for the main wall. Steve repeated this
process on the back wall. The WEDI joint sealant goes in the corner again and on top of the
tub lip because we’ll be placing the WEDI panel on top of the tub lip, not over it.
And that’s what we did for the plumbing wall as well. So compress it, put the first
screw 6 inches above the tub, and then if you have to, you can cut the panel while it’s
in place to get a nice, tight fit with the existing drywall. By the way, we’re using
half inch WEDI building panel obviously so it matches up and is nice and flush with that
drywall. Steve had to cut out some existing drywall
with the Multimaster to fit that panel in place. Again, he just pounded or indented
the back of it with the shower arm and then cut out that hole using a spade bit. He dry
fit it. Again, had to make some minor cuts with a utility knife. Applied joint sealant
to the top of that first panel and in the corner. And then place that second WEDI panel
over top of the first and then just evenly spaced out the screws.
After we completed the front plumbing wall, we went back to the back wall and added a
section of panel. Now we had a little sliver of WEDI that needed to meet up with that second
piece. And we added the joint sealant to it instead of the top of that second piece of
WEDI building panel and then screwed it in place.
So the nice thing about WEDI is you can custom fit it to any size and shape. Because our
tub flange outside of the tub where it meets up with the drywall sticks out a little bit,
we created a dado there. And Steve applied some WEDI joint sealant to that tub flange
where it met up with the drywall and then placed a WEDI over top of that. And that created
a nice, tight seal. And then he just screwed it in place using a few screws and washers.
Now on the front plumbing wall, we had to actually split the WEDI in half, apply a generous
amount of the joint sealant to the tub flange, and then just float that WEDI over top of
it; we actually didn’t screw it in place. Then we added another joint seal between the
WEDI and the tub. So we did that for both the front and the back of the tub for a watertight
seal. Once all the panels are in place, apply WEDI
joint sealant to all of the corners. In the corner, you want to add a lot of joint sealant;
be very, very generous with it. That’s going to be a spot where you’ll also want to flatten
it out using the WEDI corner trowel. This is only a few bucks; it’s well worth it.
It make a nice, tight seam. And then apply the joint sealant to all seams, especially
around that niche. And then you smooth it out using a 3 inch putty knife. And so that
will give you a nice, watertight seal between all of the WEDI panels. And then apply joint
sealant to the screws and washers. If you missed any of the screws and washers, go back
and get them. If you created a hole in the WEDI that went the whole way through the WEDI
building panel, you’ll also want to fill that with joint sealant.
Then where the WEDI panel meets the tub lip, fill in that gap with the joint sealant and
then smooth it out using your putty knife. That will create a watertight seal between
the WEDI building panel and the tub, so do that for the back and the front wall. Remember,
on the main wall we didn’t have to do this; we’ll go over that in a second. And then
we apply WEDI joint sealant over top of the Hansgrohe iBox for additional waterproofing.
And then where your shower arm sticks out, you want to create a little horseshoe or circular
joint seal around that to prevent water from going behind this area. So do the same thing
for the tub spout. Create just a little dam using the joint sealant. And that way, if
any water gets behind the tile, it won’t go behind the wall.
So again, for that main wall we just supplied an additional bead of WEDI joint sealant between
the tub and the panel and then smooth it out using a putty knife. So a really good idea
is to make sure that that area next to the tub is watertight using the joint sealant.
Now you can apply WEDI joint sealant between the building panel and the drywall section.
We just didn’t do it in this case because it’s on the back wall. But you can do that
if you want. So this is what our WEDI looked like after
we were done. It only took us a few hours to do this, and that included making a video
tutorial, so it’s super quick. And we know that all the tile is waterproof behind. It’s
all waterproof behind this travertine tile on the shower. So, really great project if
you’re waterproofing a shower. So that’s how you waterproof a shower using
the WEDI method. Now if you’re interested in WEDI and want to learn more about it, you
can check it out over on bathroomrepairtutor.com and then visit our online store. So we do
sell WEDI, and the reason why is we’ve used it on several projects. It’s rock solid.
It comes with a 10-year warranty. And many, many other installers respect that process.
So we wanted to make it available to you and also help you pick out the right materials
for whatever shower you’re building. And that’s one of the things we do over on our
online store. Before you buy WEDI or any of the other materials, you send us an email,
you tell us a little bit about your shower that you’re building. Maybe you send us
some pictures, and then we put together a list of the materials we think could help
you out and actually cut down on the cost as well. So you can check that out over on
bathroomrepairtutor.com. And also, if you want one of our free online
courses, you can click right here to get that. And that’ll help you build a shower a lot
easier, faster, and better. So again, you can click right here to check out both bathroomrepairtutor.com
and our free online course. That’s it for today. Hopefully this video
helped you out. And we’ll talk to you soon. Take care.

32 thoughts on “How to Waterproof a Shower Using Wedi (Step-by-Step)

  1. Great video again guys! I've been having withdrawals the last few weeks without one LOL. One question though because I've never worked with wedi, do you leave a small gap, 1/8 or so between the tub and the bottom of the first panel for expansion/contraction and weight from water and people? Thanks again!

  2. what would the cost to purchase, and install the tub, as well as the board be? Obviously, exact numbers may fluctuate, but a rough estimate is all i need. Also, could you install the board over the flange on the tub?

  3. Could we use the Kerdi Fix on Kerdi board over the washers the same way it's used the sealing on Wedi board? They seem to be almost the same technology​. Looks a bit cleaner with Wedi. Thank you for all the info. God Bless you guys for sharing the info.

  4. Nice system. Never seen this one.
    I assume its foam. .. is there any flex from smaller format tiles installed on this?
    I assume wall use only.

  5. For a DIY'er, any real advantage for this over Kerdi? I've done sheetrock which this is similar too, but somewhat new to tiling.

  6. Just a quick question…why did Steve not fur out the other walls to bring the wedi panel down to the tub, and instead put the wedi panel on the lip of tub? Love your videos….will be ordering from you soon!

  7. Did you purchase any Wedi products to make this video? I can't be sure….

    Great video and voice-over, can we tame the use of the word wedi in future? Sealant can be called sealant not wedi sealant every 30 seconds, we knew it was branded by Wedi from the beginning of the video.

    Thanks for taking the time to film your work and explain to the viewers.

  8. Am assuming it’s a mock up tub for Wedi product demonstration. Because there is no insulation.on brick wall.but good job on showing how to water proof tub surround..great job

  9. This is an awesome job and I wonder if I can do the same, drop the Wedi panel over the lip on my Kohler shower base? The instructions are confusing see their instructions https://www.us.kohler.com/webassets/kpna/catalog/pdf/en/1185992_2.pdf I fear that water may sipped back if I follow the instructions. I like the idea of sitting the panel on the lip. Any help would be appreciated.

  10. Hey guys. Love the channel. I just installed the wedi board base and walls. The thinset was a little thin but held its shape even when left for a while. Will I be okay?

  11. I just do not trust joints that are caulked and not somehow counter flashed like the Schluter or USG system. In new england the building moves entirely too much to rely on caulk to hold a joint together. Otherwise great contractor, guy knows his stuff.

  12. Great demo, very instructive, thank you!
    Its a Dremel Multi Max by the way. I have the Multi Max 45 which has a quick release button. This is the best tool for flush cuts on the market.
    On the niche install, I think it could have used more glue to hold it down. It had no nails or screws attaching it directly to the wood studs, only some on the ends. It did not look secure enough.
    How does Wedi compare in functionality and cost over Schluter Kerdi board, or Hydo board?
    For a small RV bathroom install, this type of backer board is ideal for low weight and prevention of water leaks. My question is, how do you hold up the vertical wall tiles on Wedi board? You still have to use thinset mortar right? Can I use Polymer instead of water in the thinset mortar mix and also in the tile grout? Reason for this is – my RV is under constant movement like an earthquake. Polymer gives a rubber movement dampening effect on the tile and they don't pop out. Not sure if you can use Polymer on these new materials.

  13. Cool idea but there is no way that is enough sealant in that kit to do the whole job concerning you want to be generous with it

  14. Great video but u still haven’t learned to protect the clients tub, 🤔🤔🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️

  15. Thank you for the great film! The handsome contractor Steve in this film should be in Hollywood rather than in somebody bathroom though. Hollywood overlooked for sure!
    My contractor installed a waterproof sheetrock, but I want now a niche, like in this film. Can I cut out a rectangular for the niche, because wooden studs are not cut out or I need to remove corresponding sheetrock piece completely? My contractor didn't put any washers, would it be a problem? And if that sheetrock installed on the whole wall till the bottom already, can I put tile in the way that sheet rock is behind the tub and seal the edge somehow differently than shown in the film?

  16. Thanks. Why did you put the Wedi on top of the tub lip on the front and back wall, but over the lip on the large side wall?

  17. Going from a fiberglass tub and surround to a shower using an onyx pan. Looking for whatever I'm gonna need to tile from the floor to the ceiling and a niche

  18. Eve should have been more careful in the tub should have placed a drop cloth he must have scratched the hell out of it

  19. Awesome as usual! Thank you! Is it absolutely necessary to fir out the main wall in order to have wedi board go over tub flange and sit on tub deck? Just curious on all the reasons for furring out that wall. Thanks again!

  20. I tip my hat to you as a professional. The information you're providing is correct and that's the way I like to do it. I found information in your video refreshing to see that you follow the same steps that I do. Watching you work is like attending a wedi seminar. these techniques were drilled into me from the minute I started working with this product. Thanks for giving folks the right info

  21. Is the joint sealant universal in adhesion performance with other surfaces? I can understand that it adheres to the Wedi's blue foam membrane but the tub ceramic, fiberglass, plastic surfaces? And the adhesion to thin sets and mortars and drywall?

  22. I really need a clarification please – you started 4" on top of the tub for the screws and then every 12" for the fasteners. I've asked this to my local area Wedi tech rep, and he's a real cocky know-it-all saying his way is the highway and you always start 12" from bottom whether on a shower pan or on top of a bathtub. I assume you use 4" because of a know-how after having done many remodels. Would you explain why you start at 4"? Have you seen Wedi bow out after tile job when started at 12"?

  23. Why do you shim the back wall with plywood (to bring the panel out and overlapping the tub lip), but then set the side panels on top on the tub lip (no overlap)?

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