LESLIE: Paul in Texas wants to do a project in a shower. What can we help you with?
PAUL: I have a shower that’s 27 inches by 27 inches. My father built it a long, long time ago. And it has ceramic tile in it – the 4×4 ceramic tiles – and I am wondering if there is any way to put some new finish on the inside of that without gutting it out. I’m really trying to shy away from the (inaudible at 0:14:43) and I hate putting firring strips because I just don’t have the room. And I’m wondering if you can help me.
LESLIE: Well, and if you put anything over it, you’re still going to lose room. That sounds like a tiny shower. Am I wrong?
PAUL: It is. It’s very, very tiny but …
TOM: Well, what’s the condition of the tile now? Is it the grout that’s looking kind of grungy or is it the tile that you don’t like?
PAUL: It’s more of a grout coming out. Some of the border tiles on the outside, the trim tiles, are coming loose and chipping just from years. It’s been in there over 40 years and …
TOM: Yeah, that’s actually easier. What you want to do is get a grout saw and you want to cut out all of the grout. You can grind away and slice out all of that grout in between the tile. The next thing you’ll do is you’ll repair all of the loose tile by regluing them back in place and then you can regrout the whole thing. And that’s not such a terribly complex job and it’ll look practically brand new.
PAUL: Am I going to – as far as matching those old tiles, am I going to have to get creative and make another pattern or are those old tiles readily available?
TOM: Those are your options. You can take the tiles into a tile store; see if you can get something that’s close. If you can live with it, fine. If not, pull that row out and choose something that’s complementary and then it’ll look like it was always supposed to be there.
LESLIE: Or take out like a big chunk of rows and put in like a really fun, 1/2-inch mosaic glass tile; you know, to sort of modernize it. Or take out that same chunk of rows and put in a mesh-backed river rock or some sort of pebble to sort of update the whole look.
PAUL: Ah, really very good. Thank you so much.
TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
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