I am in the process of remodeling a bathroom and I am putting in a new tub and plan to tile the walls. It seems most tubs are standard depths of 30 or 32 inches, ours is 32". Now the new tub is attached right to the 2x framing then the backer board comes over the lip of the tub. When you do this you make a 32" tub 31-1/2" to the front of the tub. Now my tile is gonna be 1/2" past the front of the tub. I am using 2"x2" tiles. Do I have to cut the back row down by 1/2" to make them match the front of the tub or am I missing something?

  • If you do a 1" bullnose border tile (which is common), 2x2" field tile, with 1/16" grout lines, you would end up not having to cut a tile and you'd end 1/2" in front of the tub. My guess is the tub manufacturers use this model as a "typical" installation scenario, and have sized the tub accordingly.
    – Tester101
    Jun 28, 2012 at 12:20

1 Answer 1


Yes the tile will need to be cut. You can either use a wet saw or a manual tile cutter.

Before you go cutting the tiles in half for the back wall you will need to make sure you are accounting for the width of the grout lines. Are your tiles really 2"x2"? Do you have bullnose pieces or trim pieces to transition the tile at the edge, or is it OK for your tile to show an exposed edge?

  • do not want to use a bullnose for cost and i dont really like the transition from tile to bullnose. my plan was to find a caulk the same color as my grout for the exposed edge
    – JOCKO
    Jun 27, 2012 at 22:18
  • I ask in case your trim pieces were a different size. Anyway you don't need to have the cut edge be in the back corner (though it may look best that way as it will hide it more), you could have the cut pieces be on the outside edge.
    – auujay
    Jun 27, 2012 at 22:21
  • why hasnt someone made a tub or shower that accounts for all this? it would be a lot easier for them to make the tub a 1/2-3/4" deeper than for me to cut all that tile!
    – JOCKO
    Jun 27, 2012 at 22:22
  • 1
    Most bathrooms are not exactly the same, not everyone uses 1/2" backer board and different tiles have different thicknesses. In general tile allows for a lot of customizing. For example in my tub I tiled a little beyond the edge of the tub. The one-size-fits all standard solution would be to not tile at all and just use an acrylic surround.
    – auujay
    Jun 27, 2012 at 22:24
  • auujay, thanks for your input. after i purchased all the tile i got to thinkin a surround would have been much simpler but this tile will look great...and custom. what do you know about setting a new tub. the manufacturer recomends setting it in a bed of mortar but is this really necessary?
    – JOCKO
    Jun 30, 2012 at 16:13

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