4 key levels when renovating a shower, or bath surrounds

By Tal | 2021-06-01

Using a multi-level installation system when renovating a residential bathroom ensures a durable end-result for you, and your customer. The cost of being called back to conduct repairs because water has seeped from the wet areas in the bathroom, through the wall into the room next door, can be significant. It is therefore important that you include waterproofing of the shower and/or bath surrounds in your quote. We recommend the following multi-level system for renovating a shower or bath surrounds, for long-lasting success.

Level 1: Surface Preparation

DIY Tips - tiling

Start by filling any holes or surface defects in the surface with a suitable quick-setting repair compound, like TAL Rapidfix mixed with TAL Screedbinder. Once this has cured, ensure that the surface is clean and free from dust, dirt, waxes or other contamination as this can interfere with the bond of the waterproofing onto the substrate.

Level 2: Priming (if not a rendered surface)

Rendered surfaces that are cured, clean and free from contaminants do not require any primers before applying the waterproofing compound.

When waterproofing a drywall or highly porous surface, you will need to prime with a coat of neat TAL Floor Primer, to create a seal so that the waterproofing doesn’t leach into the surface. If not primed, a porous surface will absorb the waterproofing compound unevenly and ultimately use more product than necessary.

Wooden and metal surfaces should be primed with a TAL Keycoat and TAL Keymix slurry coat to create a key for the waterproofing compound to adhere to.

Level 3: Waterproofing

Use a cementitious waterproofing compound such as TAL Sureproof Shower, as it is fully compatible with TAL tile adhesives.

In a single-story, or ground floor home, the fibre enriched formulation of TAL Sureproof Shower will provide enhanced flexibility as well as crack-bridging properties to fill any small hair-line shrinkage and static cracks (less than 2mm wide). No reinforcing membrane is therefore required for the installation.

When waterproofing a shower or bath surrounds that is upstairs however, a reinforcing membrane should be used in internal corners, interfaces, around tap and rose plumbing fittings as well as drains.

DIY Tips - mixing

To prepare TAL Sureproof Shower, pour approximately 1.8 - 2L of water into the TAL Sureproof Shower bucket, then, using a mechanical mixer, mix while adding the TAL Sureproof Shower powder. Mix for at least five minutes until the liquid has a smooth, lump free, paint like consistency.

Allow the mix to stand for 3 minutes to allow the product to activate, then mix again.

DIY Tips - shower waterproofing

Apply the first coat of TAL Sureproof Shower to the clean dry surface with a block brush in a vertical direction.

Once the first coat is touch dry, (1-2 hours), apply the second coat in a horizontal direction to the first coat to ensure complete coverage.

level 3 shower rose installation

Top Tip: Waterproof to a minimum of 100mm above the shower rose.

Level 4: Tiling

tiling shower wall

Allow TAL Sureproof Shower to dry completely for 24-36 hours before tiling directly onto the waterproofing. Due to the impervious nature of the waterproofed substrate, only rapid- or quick-setting tile adhesives should be used. To improve the water resistance, flexibility and bond strength of the adhesive, use TAL Bond as a total water replacement in the mix.   

When grouting, it is recommended to also replace the water in the TAL grout mix with TAL Bond. Preparing the shower in this manner, level by level, will ensure a long-lasting and water-tight shower installation.

Tiles are not inherently waterproof, which is why it is important to include waterproofing when renovating a shower, or bath surrounds. This multi-level approach not only ensures the durability and longevity of your work, but also results in a happy customer.


Watch our step by step video on how to waterproof a shower on YouTube.

TAL products are available at all major tile merchants and home improvement retailers.

Download the infographic here 


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