Bathroom Renovation – Behind The Scenes

April 1, 2019

We sometimes get asked what’s the difference between a good and great bathroom renovation. Well there’s a number of elements.
In this article we’ll focus on some of the things that are ‘behind the scenes’ so to speak – stuff that’s done during the build and renovation phase that can make a difference to the finished product and a dream bathroom renovation.


The key to waterproofing is (1) quality products, (2) surface preparation and (3) film thickness.

  1. We use only premium Ardex waterproofing products. They aren’t cheap but Ardex has built a reputation for quality that we admire.
  2. We install the correct substrates and clean and prime these before applying the first coat of waterproofing all according to the manufacturers guidelines.
  3. We measure the area to be waterproofed and work out how much is required to complete the job – it’s our consumption guide ie the minimum product we need to use according to the manufacture – for each job. We then assess film thickness as we go. We’ve often seen jobs with a ‘wafer thin’ coat of waterproofing that eventually fail with sometimes serious consequences.

Shower Bases

We only use pre-formed shower bases for our level-entry showers on a timber sub-floor. Why? Because anything else will not go the distance.
On concrete floors we will use a well formed screed that is cured and dry.

Wall Fixings

We like to know what fittings are to be installed before we start because we like to fit mounting points behind the tiles so that the fittings will stay attached for the life of the bathroom – especially important for towel rails, toilet roll holders and shower screens.


Before a single tile is laid in the bathroom renovation we will spend time working out the ideal tile layout and location of grout lines. Why? Because it can make a huge difference to the finished job.

We take time on our tiling cause it’s a critical part of the process and has a big impact on the finished quality eg:

  • we saw cut our shower base tiles not score-and-snap using a tile cutter – because the grout needs a minimum grout gap between the tiles to adhere to
  • We use epoxy grout on shower base floors because it’s stain resistant, hard wearing and water-resistant
  • Our tile glue is compatible with the waterproofing system which is compatible with the grout – a must for any compliant waterproofing system – and all Ardex branded. These cost more but we think it’s important that the manufacturer has fully tested the compatibility of all their product.
  • We make sure that the tile glue allows the shower bed to drain freely to the leak control flange – refer image below.


Apart from compliant plumbing by our licensed plumber we do some little things extra in our bathroom renovation like extra clamping of hoses, silicone at penetrations, proper sealing around benchtops, neat and tidy waste pipe installation to maximise the usable space in your vanity for example.


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