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I'm based in Tasmania, Australia. Bathroom and laundry reno in the works. They’ve been great so far - removed a wall, replaced floor joists, and I’ve felt respected and listened to but my tradespeople (low bar, but previous tradies have showed me little respect due to be seeing as a “clueless woman”).

I’m curious about the laying of the drywall (waterproof plaster) and cement sheets as there’s a screw that doesn’t look right and the sheets are bumping out at the bottom. I’m concerned the tearing has damaged the waterproof layer of the drywall. See photos linked below.

Products used:

James Hardie cement sheeting

Gyprock Aquacheck

Whole laundry floor: enter image description here

Laundry floor, screw tearing cement sheet edge: enter image description here

Laundry wall plaster pushing out: enter image description here

Bathroom wall plaster pushing out: enter image description here

There's no plywood beneath the cement sheeting. I thought you could lay cement sheeting directly onto joists - so I've seen in the many DIY videos anyway! I've linked the products used in the original post - James Hardie for floor, and Gyprock Aquacheck for walls. I would have preferred JH villaboard, but went with Aquacheck because it was cheaper and available. Even though the blue plastic barrier is torn and revealing the plaster layer, will mudding fix that waterproof barrier? Bathroom tiles will be 1200mm, and laundry tile skirting.

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  • @popham Thank you for your detailed answers. There's no plywood beneath the cement sheeting. I thought you could lay cement sheeting directly onto joists - so I've seen in the many DIY videos anyway! I've linked the products used in the original post - James Hardie for floor, and Gyprock Aquacheck for walls. I would have preferred JH villaboard, but went with Aquacheck because it was cheaper and available. Even though the blue plastic barrier is torn and revealing the plaster layer, will mudding fix that waterproof barrier? Bathroom tiles will be 1200mm, and laundry tile skirting.
    – bee
    Oct 8, 2023 at 22:15
  • How are the walls and floor to be finished? It's hard to give useful advice when we don't know what's happening next.
    – isherwood
    Oct 9, 2023 at 18:26

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Drywall is never "waterproof". It may be moisture resistant, which just means that it won't turn to mush if it occasionally gets damp. It's in no way a barrier to water intrusion, especially once it's punched full of screw holes. It's all about the integrity of the panel itself.

AquaCheck is a bit of a different animal. It's not "drywall". It's a more advanced panel capable of stopping most moisture. It has clear fastener instructions in the installation guide.

It's common for drywall of all types to have a few damaged corners and other flaws. That's what the taping is for. All that will be repaired later. You haven't said how the walls or floor will be finished, but if they're getting tile it's even less of a concern.

Be sure that the manufacturers' recommendations are being followed. You can do that without us by reviewing the literature they provide. Ask your tradies about any specific concerns.

I'll offer my usually caveat when folks imply that their bathrooms and laundry rooms should be boats. They shouldn't. They should withstand occasional light splashing, and anything beyond that is negligence. If you expect to be flooding them with water on a regular basis, build a shower stall instead, with requisite water management. Otherwise, be careful to keep the water where it belongs. My wife and I have raised two kids without any notable bathroom or laundry floods. It's just a matter of setting expectations.

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  • DensShield is a waterproof gypsum board product, for instance.
    – popham
    Oct 9, 2023 at 18:38
  • If you look at the language on the product page, it's made clear that it's a second line of defense and not a primary water barrier. "Waterproof" is not a word they use.
    – isherwood
    Oct 9, 2023 at 18:41
  • Here's the most recent installation guide from their website: buildgp.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/…. Tub and shower sidewalls section: "DensShield® Tile Backer has a built-in moisture barrier. Does not require an additional moisture barrier." It's just as "waterproof" as RedGard. The OP's language suggests that she thought that this or some analogue was her product.
    – popham
    Oct 9, 2023 at 19:01

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