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Bathroom Shower Tile Nightmare

Don Barnhart
March 11, 2019
last modified: March 11, 2019

Our first remodel and had Best Buy Flooring do our shower tile with a soap dish insert. We have jagged edges from the cuts that they say is because of the glazed tile and instead of replacing they want to use more grout to cover it up. Here's are some pics from the cut lines and grouting around the tub, soap dish and shower.

Is this acceptable and/or normal? They are willing to come out and replace a few but they keep making excuses that they used a new blade/etc and that's pretty much what it will look like.

Thanks in advance, Don

Comments (24)

  • Brittney E
    No. Not acceptable.
  • millworkman

    The fact that they insist that is the best they can do on cutting/installing tile is quite revealing initself. Also in addition that grout should not be there in pic #3. All chnages in plane need to be caulk. The grout needs to be removed and replaced, sooner the better as it takes time for grout to harden. That being said, be prepared for a barage of questions as to what steps and what paterials are under those tile. Because if the tile installer thinks that is acceptable there is not a ton of hope that the waterproofing would be correct.

  • cat_ky

    Its a really terrible tile job, and no I wouldnt accept it. There should be caulk in some areas rather than grout in picture 2 too. Like millworkman, I would also be concerned about proper waterproofing, since it is pretty obvious, that they have no clue what they were doing

  • geoffrey_b

    I don't know what they used to cut the tile. They should use a wet saw, with a new blade. Not a snap cutter.

  • PRO
    Dragonfly Tile & Stone Works, Inc.

    These installations are a travesty to our industry. We call them hack jobs and are always disappointed when we are called in to tear out and replace a job because it was not done properly by some unqualified labor. I'm sorry to say but that's what you got. It's an unacceptable installation. Agree with others that you should also be concerned with what is UNDERNEATH that tile. Ask them to document how every aspect of the shower build and tile installation conforms to industry standards. If they don't know what this handbook is, you did not have a professional. Also note, standard 4.3.3 as an example.

  • PRO
    Don Barnhart thanked Creative Tile Eastern CT
  • Don Barnhart

    Thank you everyone. We contacted Well's Fargo to dispute the charges and Best Buy Flooring telling them it's unnacceptable and needs to be gutted and redone or we will go to the contractors board and stop payment. They ordered a complete replacement and new tiles and said they will redo it all but now I'll be sure to watch the first cuts and if it's jagged I'm sending them home...

  • cat_ky

    Maybe tell them, you want a crew that actually knows what they are doing. Please read up on waterproofing, and watch carefully, to see that it is done properly. Also read up on where grout should go, and where caulk should be instead (caulk should match the grout color), so that part gets done properly. They have grout in the original one, a lot of places, that should have been caulked.

    Don Barnhart thanked cat_ky
  • cpartist

    Yes I'd be very concerned they did not waterproof correctly and that is even more important than correctly cutting tiles because without proper waterproofing, you could wind up with leaks and mold issues

    Don Barnhart thanked cpartist
  • ssdarb

    I'm sorry you are going through this. I'm just a homeowner, not a pro. I had a similar problem about 18 months ago. The bad tile job was the first clue that the tile people were not skilled enough to do the water proofing right. That turned out to be the case.

    Since your tile people are coming back to redo it, you should take pictures every morning before leaving for work and every evening after you return from work. Take pictures from far away, then zoom in on the details. Then go around the room and take pictures of all the buckets of materials and all the other things that the contractor leaves in your bathroom. If you can, take a picture of their saw table.

    The waterproofing is the most important part for the integrity of your home. The tile install is also important. There should be clean cuts, minimal lippage, and some good attention paid to layout so that you don't end up with wierd sliver cuts somewhere.

    Don Barnhart thanked ssdarb
  • Don Barnhart

    Thanks for the advice, I told them we'll be home for the full installation and are going to micro manage every detail and the first jagged cut, I'm throwing them out and cancelling the job and going straight to the contractors license board. Life's too short to put up with garbage!

  • kathleen MK
    Stick to your guns, ask for a different crew if possible.
    Don Barnhart thanked kathleen MK
  • cat_ky

    Before they wreck another tile, (after you have checked out their waterproofing) watch how they cut the first tile. If they still do it wrong and have poor equipment,let that be the last tile that is cut, so no more is wasted.

    Don Barnhart thanked cat_ky
  • PRO
    Designer Drains

    Keep the pressure on them Don!

    Don Barnhart thanked Designer Drains
  • cpartist

    Please let us know how it goes. Looking forward to seeing your finished bath that looks gorgeous and is properly waterproofed. :)

    Don Barnhart thanked cpartist
  • ljptwt7
    Following. Want to hear about this job! How they stay in business installing tile is a wonder. Have a feeling you will be kicking them out the door and looking for professionals.
    Don Barnhart thanked ljptwt7
  • PRO
    Filipe Custom Woodwork

    Not a chance this is acceptable.

    I am getting dizzy just looking at the cuts of the mosaic tile.

    That is not an acceptable installation.

    Don Barnhart thanked Filipe Custom Woodwork
  • 2christene

    Don Barnhart Take Lots of pictures, now and while they re-do their mistakes... You need proof just in case...Good luck. Job was rushed and totally unacceptable.. You paid big bucks, it's their loss not yours.

    Don Barnhart thanked 2christene
  • Don Barnhart

    Thanks everyone for the words of wisdom and encouragement. I have to post this hoping you'll get a laugh as that's all we can do at this point...Because of all the corners they've cut, we've got them coming back with a top to bottom redo. 1st picture is the tile put up then they cut out the area for the soap dish insert while it was on the wall.

    2nd pic, they didn't even cover the whole tile when putting it up on the wall...Here's a pic of the tile with stuff at the top and bottom but nothing in the middle. Is that normal???

    I think I know the answer but have to ask...

  • Brittney E
    The way they are putting thinset on the tile itself isn't even right so you have bigger problems than just jagged cuts.
    Don Barnhart thanked Brittney E
  • Don Barnhart

    Yeah, it's almost hysterical how bad this has become. We're just waiting for the tile to come in so they can tear down and start over but the first jagged cut or bs I'm throwing them to the curb. I guess we have to let them attempt to "make it right" but I'm soooooo done with these morons...

  • kudzu9

    Two comments:

    1. If they were using a "new blade," as they claimed, they were using the wrong one. No tile cut should have that amount of chipping. Some of those tile cuts are so chipped and crooked that they look like they were cut freehand by someone using a Skil saw and a bad blade, rather than a tile wet saw.

    2. There should no grout anywhere there is a change of planes. Standard practice requires caulking to handle normal expansion and contraction to avoid cracking.

    Don Barnhart thanked kudzu9
  • Nicole R Dsp
    I’d insist on a full refund and find a professional local tile contractor.
    Don Barnhart thanked Nicole R Dsp
  • PRO
    Creative Tile Eastern CT

    Spot bonding was used to set wall tile. A method that is not approved for any tile installation. Especially in a wet area where 95% coverage is required. I would also suggest hiring a professional as this crew is not even aware of the basics. The link I provided above will provide you with questions to ask potential hires.

    Don Barnhart thanked Creative Tile Eastern CT

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