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Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional

 
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:05 AM   #1
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Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Ok tile gurus. I am a GC writing specs for a custom tile shower installation.

I have some guys telling me that a Kerdi type system is the only way to go. And.... Other guys telling me that they would never use a Kerdi system and that traditional install is the only way to go.

It seems like one of those new school vs. old school debates and nobody has given me enough evidence to have me convinced either way yet.

What do you guys think the advantages to either method are. Cost and time not a significant consideration within reason (not looking to double the cost of the install). I want to provide the BEST product for my clients. Call backs are not acceptable.

Thanks!
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Old 03-28-2013, 01:39 PM   #2
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Both the 'traditional" method and the thin-bed method work great when done when correctly.(I refuse to call it the Kerdi method since its not THIER method,they didnt invent it)
To me as a mfg. of both types of membranes I would say that the elevation differance of the two is the biggest reason for one over the other.The traditional (or full mortar bed) method ends up being approx. 1 1/2" thicker since it requires a mortar bed over the membrane.We have lots of people do Chloraloy (traditional) on floor and Noblesal TS on walls.
In the case of Noble Co. both have a life time warranty.

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Old 03-28-2013, 02:16 PM   #3
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Is there any particular reason you are not consulting with your tile sub on this? Why would advice from a bunch of strangers be the thing that proves to you which construction method is better if you haven't heard anything that has influenced you yet?

I think the newer methods of waterproofing the EXTERIOR of the substrate(the part you see) is logically safer as you aren't driving a ton of nails/screws through the water barrier and you aren't saturating the substrate. Which method you use is a matter of supply and preference. I personally have been using sheet membranes but am looking forward to using a liquid membrane.

There are a lot of threads on here that cover the different products.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:19 PM   #4
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


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Is there any particular reason you are not consulting with your tile sub on this?
He's in new hampshire, so there's only about 1000 people around him and 800 of those are socialists, lol.

But yeah, the local tile guys should be called in and yakked with. It's wise for him to ask around though, because as e3 alluded to, there's a lot of marketing BS out there.

Besides, I have no idea what a "custom tile shower installation" is anyway.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:50 PM   #5
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


OF COURSE I have asked my tile subs hence the comment about some telling me kerdi is the only way to go and one telling me traditional is the only way to go. Most guys are going to just preach what they know. I have torn out both that were leaky rotten messes.

If getting opinions and advice of a large unbiased audience isn't the point of these forums, please tell me what is. Maybe I should start another which CMS or compressor thread or maybe a festool vs makita.
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:08 PM   #6
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


We make both types,i have done both,answered questions on both, tested both,Ect for years.if I were doing my own shower,i would use a traditional full mortar bed on floor and TS on walls..one reason , it is possible to re-do the floor tile with out tearing out the pan
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:12 PM   #7
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Nice, good point EE3, no one has managed to mention that. That is the type of thing I am looking for. Awesome.

What about walls? What would you use in your own home that you plan to live in forever?

(sorry, just realized that you said you would use TS on walls.)

Last edited by markpage; 03-29-2013 at 05:51 PM.
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:25 PM   #8
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Mark,
E3 knows more than any of us will about tile stuff, so heed his leads.
But for me, you didn't give me anything to work off of. A lot of times, "custom" means not what came with the unit.

Is this residential? What type? Where in the unit? Occupied?
What do the owners envision? You're a GC, so I assume they've talked to you about it. Is this a full remod? Just a shower? What's it tied into?
ADA considerations?

Sorry mark, but your general, vague question came off not very well to me. Sometimes when I am working, people come up to me and after polite yakking, ask what they should use in their bathroom or how much would it cost to tile their shower, or.... I just tell them to call the local tile company in the phone book.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:15 AM   #9
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


I have to agree with CO. Best for your clients-how? Each system has +/- and costs. Most GC's want "the best" until they figure the costs aren't fitting the project budget. So what market are you building for? entry level,mid-level,high end?

Is installation time important? Some products are quicker but cost more.Some products are more labor intensive than others. You pay the installer more or you pay the material supplier more.

Regarding re-tiling a shower floor. I've never change just shower walls and left the floor. The whole look gets changed.I don't think that is a strong argument for using a traditional base.
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Old 03-29-2013, 03:24 PM   #10
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


I use Kerdi but that Wedi system keeps staring at me at the tile shop.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:05 PM   #11
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Ok some details and clarifications. Some of which were in my original post. Sorry if it seemed vague.

I have spoken to tile subs. It seems everyone pushes their way without any real supporting evidence. It is just the way they want to do it. Fine, but I want to know what is best. Best to me means: longest lasting, fewest problems, highest quality IE: Mercedes not Kia, But also not Bentley.

This is a residence. Occupied. Master bathroom shower. No ADA. Plenty of other bathrooms to use. Time is not a major factor, within reason. Cost is also not the primary factor, within reason. I don't have an unlimited budget this is the real world. This is a nice house in an upscale neighborhood.

Here is the real question..... What method would you use to build a nice shower in a house you plan to live in forever and why? The why is the most important part.

Thanks for the help so far.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:13 PM   #12
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


I've done about 50 wedi showers in the last few years, and have had great success. It's probably the fastest system.....but definitely not the cheapest. I really love the Kerdi drains.....and am now probably switching to that for the next 6 months. I think I can save about $200 -$300 per shower. But does take an extra couple hours

Not sure if its the brainwashing not wearing off yet from the schluter seminar. But I'm thinking that would outlast the wedi, just because there's a membrane sealing the corners and not a sealant
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:49 PM   #13
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


My tile guy used a Kerdi drain on the last tile shower we did. I thought it was pretty slick.

What really constitutes a traditional shower install? I tend to embrace "new" technologies so the Kerdi-type system (sorry if it should be called something else) for walls and floors appeals to me, could be all the marketing they do...., but I am not at all opposed to learning something especially if there are real benefits to my clients.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:52 PM   #14
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Quote:
Originally Posted by srwcontracting
I've done about 50 wedi showers in the last few years, and have had great success. It's probably the fastest system.....but definitely not the cheapest. I really love the Kerdi drains.....and am now probably switching to that for the next 6 months. I think I can save about $200 -$300 per shower. But does take an extra couple hours

Not sure if its the brainwashing not wearing off yet from the schluter seminar. But I'm thinking that would outlast the wedi, just because there's a membrane sealing the corners and not a sealant
Wedi also sells a membrane if you want on inside corners . But they say you don't need it .
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:16 PM   #15
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


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Fine, but I want to know what is best. Best to me means: longest lasting, fewest problems, highest quality
Full mudjob, and no wood/foam for curbs under any mud. It will outlast your house.

Quote:
Here is the real question..... What method would you use to build a nice shower in a house you plan to live in forever and why? The why is the most important part.
Seems like a question whose answer will be used in marketing.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:19 PM   #16
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


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My tile guy used a Kerdi drain on the last tile shower we did. I thought it was pretty slick.
Why?
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:36 PM   #17
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Seems like a question whose answer will be used in marketing.[/QUOTE]

Huh?
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:38 PM   #18
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


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Why?
I thought the way it integrated into the membrane and preformed pan was well put together. Just my impression.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:59 PM   #19
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


Sounds good. I'm not familiar with them as I've never used one. Someday, but so far, not a use for one yet.

Marketing is all about being general, being a brand that sells something vague, like "hope" and "change". I'm sure each type of substrate will say they are the "best" because, I mean, how can you contest that? How is "best" measured? Quality is another one. Sheetrock with glue in showers must have been quality and the best because millions of those have lasted problem free for longer than most warranties issued these days.
So sheetrock could be considered a quality product too as millions of ones were out there and no callbacks for 20-30 years.

Quality of substrate is a tricky thing to measure I guess. You seem to be looking for a rationale for some prefab package.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:06 PM   #20
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Re: Kerdi / Wedi Vs. Traditional


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[]Seems like a question whose answer will be used in marketing.]
Huh?
You went from "what's the best?" to "here's the real question..."
Do you want to know what is the best, or what I would use in my own house? And in what bathroom?

FWIW, I usually have enough leftovers that whatever I make for myself, it's from leftovers from various jobs. Sometimes when I'm on a job and need something, I usually have it on hand somewhere or can bring it from home the next day. Wow, talk about sometimes mixing vendors and their different products.....

But they're all the best.

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