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Replace a Bathtub While Preserving Tile

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Aaron in New York is remodeling a bath and how can we help you?

    AARON: How can I replace the bathtub in our bathroom without losing tiles? And pretty much the tiles, the style that we have, we can’t really find it. We’re trying to make sure that we can minimize that and make sure that the tiles don’t fall off and break and I mean …

    TOM: OK, well here’s …

    AARON: … that’s pretty much (AUDIO GAP) happen.

    TOM: Here’s what I think you should do, Aaron. What I think you should do is I think you should sacrifice the bottom layer of tile. In other words, if you have four-inch tiles that go all the way up and down the wall, let’s assume that we’re going to lose that first four inches and because we have to tear the wall out there we may lose some tiles in the process.

    What you can do is after the new Jacuzzi is installed and the wall is repaired, you can put a new row of tile around the bottom and make it a complementary color to the tiles that are above. The trick here is to make it look like it was always supposed to be that way. So instead of having the same color all the way down to the lip of the tub, now you’re going to have sort of a border color along the bottom of the tub. Does that make sense to you, Leslie?

    LESLIE: Oh yeah and it could be an interesting choice. You could go with a natural stone or a tumbled marble or even those river rock or mosaic tiles. So it doesn’t have to be something that’s difficult to install and it can look really like a beautiful, decorative element.

    TOM: It doesn’t even have to be the same size. I mean if you had four-inch tile …

    LESLIE: No, it shouldn’t be, I think.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) Right, you could make it completely different.

    AARON: One fast question. I mean what happens if the border is just like, I don’t know, maybe like four, five or six inches over that? So the border’s real close. It’s …

    TOM: Whatever the space ends up being with that one layer of tile, treat that whole space as the border, whether it’s four inches, five or six, and then make a selection of tile to fill that in so it looks like it was always supposed to be that way. I think it can look really cool when you’re done and it solves the problem of helping your tub out without tearing out all of the tile walls.

    LESLIE: And there’s 1″x1″ square tiles that are on mesh backings. You can put those on individually; tile by tile. There’s even tiny little microdot button ones that are 1/4×1/4 that are just so adorable and rounded from Bisazza. I mean they’re pricey but they’re so cute and they can really make a great statement and you don’t have to spend that much. You can go in any sort of price range and find something that’ll work.

    AARON: I understand. Thank you.

    TOM: You’re welcome.

    AARON: That was a great answer. Thank you very much.

    TOM: You’re welcome, Aaron. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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