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Drywall, concrete backer board is usually used as an under layment for ceramic tile. It can be used on walls, floors or countertops. It has a solid core and is faced on both sides with fiberglass. It's an ideal under layment for wet areas like shower walls and bathtub surrounds. If your board meets a drywall surface, you may have to first build out the studs with strips of builders felt or treated wood to make the surfaces flush.
Cutting Backer board:
Cutting backer board is a lot like cutting drywall, except that backer board is much harder. By using a framing square score your cut line a few times. You can use a regular utility knife for this, but you'll go through a lot of blades. A special carbide-blade cutter works better. If you're using a utility knife, shorten the blade to keep it from breaking. Break the board by applying pressure until it snaps apart along the score line. You'll probably have to cut through the fiberglass on the back also.
Installing Backer board:
Start installing backer board at the back wall and work your way from the bottom up. If you're working in a bathtub or shower use cardboard or a blanket on the tub floor before you start work to protect the surfaces from getting scratched or chipped. Use galvanized nails or screws to secure the backer board. If you're working above a shower pan, be sure to nail or screw above it so you don't puncture the fabric. The ends of the backer board sheets should be centered over the studs, but stagger the joints so they don't line up with one another. Leave about 1/8" space between the sheets of backer board. Cut holes in the backer board for around shower and bath controls. Score the mesh on both sides of the board and hammer on it until it breaks out.
Finishing board Seams:
You want to mud and tape the joints of the backer board also. First fill the joint with tile adhesive using a taping knife. Then put fiberglass tape over the seam and put more tile adhesive over that. Like drywall, the sheets have tapered edges, this allows you to fill the joints and still stay level with the backer board. For a ceramic tile under layment, one coat of mud is enough. For more help go to
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