DIY bathroom repair

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Repairing a bathroom is a matter of responsibility and expensive. In this article, we will talk about general recommendations and give some important tips on how to make a bathroom repair yourself.ContentTo uncover

If you have ever been engaged in repairs in your life, then you know perfectly well how difficult and exhausting this event can be. And the point here is not so much in cash expenditures, as in the psychological discomfort that a person experiences at the sight of his defeated home. Worst of all with a bathroom. With a full-scale repair, cash costs can exceed all reasonable limits: tile and new plumbing, replacement of pipes and boilers. And if you add to this the challenge of a specialist who will do everything for you … It is not surprising that many people prefer to do the repair of the bathroom with their own hands. That is why today we will talk about how this is done and what you should pay attention to first.

Stage 1: Preparatory Events

Drawing up a work plan

Preparatory events 1
Preparatory events 2

You have no idea how many repairs ended in liters of drunk valerian just because the people who started them completely ignored even the most primitive planning. First, go through your friends, acquaintances, and also look at the photos at the end of this article: what do you want to see at the end of the repair? Fully remodeled bathroom with modified wall layout, or just a cosmetically renovated room? The difference in money in these two cases will be simply colossal! Particular attention should be paid to plumbing: will you change it, or are you satisfied with the current state? Taking into account the fact that even the worst toilet bowl (in the case of a bathroom combined) costs at least 3.5-4 thousand rubles, spending on a new plumbing will be considerable.

Preparatory events 5

Draw sketches of the proposed transformations, make prints of the photos on our website. “Estimate” them to your conditions. If you can call yourself a “confident PC user”, try to create a three-dimensional bathroom model in any suitable program (free Sweet Home 3D, for example). “Mature bison” repair can with slight contempt to notice that in the old days did without it. In principle, there is a grain of truth in this, but with the floor plan before your eyes, you will be much better aware of the amount of work.

Name of materialsApproximate cost, rubles
Electrical wiring700-1000
Pipes, fittings, couplings, etc.2500-3000
Drain system kit (pipes, seals)1000
The door is interroom1500-2100
Handle with latch on the door400-600
Floor tiles2900
Wall tiles7000-7500
Steel or cast iron bathroom (excluding delivery charges)8500
Tulip shell4500
Hoses for water supply to the plumbing1000-1500
Wall mirror2400
Other accessories3000
Total amount44200
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Preparatory events 7
Preparatory events 8

Secondly, what is your bathroom type? Separate or combined layout? Much also depends on the answer to this question, since in the case of a “universal” toilet room, you will have to solve the problem of disguising a multitude of pipes and risers. As a rule, individual bathrooms in this regard are much nicer to look at, since the Soviet and Russian developers did at least work on their planning. Thirdly, decide on the preferred type of finish. Many of our citizens know only tile and PVC panels, which have appeared in the last ten years. Do not think that the options are exhausted only by these two species. You can decorate your bathroom:

  • Special waterproof paints.
  • Not once mentioned tile.
  • Waterproof wallpaper, including liquid (for reliability, they can also be painted).
  • Plastic panels or tiles.
  • Decorative plaster mixtures.
  • Finally, glass tiles, which are just “included in the trend.”

Note! As for the glass tile, then when repairing the bathroom it should be used pointwise. First, it is quite expensive. Secondly, it is too easy to damage, and with a large surface lining this will happen.

Preparatory events 9
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Tips for choosing materials


Oddly enough, but the only suitable material for pipes that will be used for laying plumbing in the bathroom is polypropylene. Metal-plastic is not only more expensive, but also more suitable for laying in especially difficult places, where it is impossible to do without several dozen bends. Of course, it may well be relevant for the bathroom, but here there is one “but”: the fact is that metal-plastic is a capricious thing. Couplings are required to connect such pipes, and they have an extremely unpleasant habit of flowing at the most inappropriate moments. That is why it is better not to regret time and weld the pipeline from polypropylene. Such a system will easily stand for decades, without missing a drop of water.

Plumbing 1
Plumbing 2

Important! When choosing pipes, be sure to be interested not only in their internal, but also external diameter. It is better to choose those of them who have the same indicator! You may well need to drill more than one hole under their gasket, so it’s best to use only one diamond drill bit (very expensive, by the way).

Plumbing 3
Plumbing 4

Fittings and Fittings

This need to talk specifically. In the bathroom, only (!) Plastic fittings are allowed. In this case, you can hide the entire structure in the box and not worry about the possibility of leakage. To connect pipes it is possible only by means of a special soldering iron. The connection is only on the couplings, but in no case can they be stapled together.

Plumbing 5
Plumbing 6


Ideal stoneware. Yes, it is somewhat more expensive than traditional tile, but its surface is rough. What does it mean? Yes, you just will be deprived of the unpleasant opportunity to smash his head, slipping on the wet floor. When buying, you should perform these simple manipulations:

  • First we take a tile from several packs. Does the seller refuse to open packages from different lots? Leave this store and go to another.
  • Take two tiles from different batches, put them together (back side to each other) and put them on a flat surface. And now we are looking at the profile: if the difference in the upper edge is not more than 1 mm, you can proceed to the next verification step.
  • To do this, take the same tiles and reapply them to each other, but with the front surface. If there are no clearly visible openings, hillocks and other surface breaks, then everything is in order.
  • After that, once again, take the long-suffering tile in your hand and look at its surface, placing it against the light: if there are tiny cracks on the glaze, mesh or divorces, then it is better not to buy such products.

Important! The latter requirements may seem excessively strict, but too much depends on the state of the tile surface: in microcracks and other surface defects the mold adores, which cannot be cleaned.

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Bathroom Examples 1
Bathroom Examples 2
Bathroom Examples 3

Glue and tiling tools

We strongly advise you to choose for tile work only the glue, the drying period of which is at least 12 hours. If you are going to tile the bathroom yourself, such characteristics will allow you to work without haste, avoiding flaws. Spatula for work is selected according to the characteristics that are listed on the package with glue. If this information is not there, you should buy a tool with teeth of 3-6 mm, as this is a standard value. Too large in size will cause multiple cavities to remain under the tile. Do not forget about the purchase of a tile cutter and a good diamond drill (with a diameter like that of purchased pipes). In addition, for laying tiles required “beacons” in the form of plastic crosses. It is not necessary to buy a separate tool for smoothing seams, since for this purpose a perfect piece of hose from an IV or even a piece of cable with a suitable cross section is ideal. We also advise you to stock up with a sufficient amount of flannel fabric, which is also required for carrying out clean-up work on grouting.

Bathroom examples 4
Bathroom Examples 5

Other tools: a grinder with several discs, a perforator with a set of nozzles and a metal brush, a jigsaw, a tile cutter, a set of plastic crosses for laying tiles, a tape measure and other building accessories.

The choice of wallpaper for the bathroom

In principle, there is not much to say about this. Buy should choose from three varieties:

  • Washable wallpaper.
  • Vinyl.
  • Liquid wallpaper.
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Bathroom Examples 6
Bathroom Examples 7
Bathroom Examples 8

It is preferable to choose the last type, as it is a kind of plaster. Liquid wallpaper is easier to apply, and damaged areas can simply be scraped off and re-applied.

Bathroom Examples 9

Remove all the excess

Also very important and important stage. It is necessary to dismantle and throw away the old plumbing, the enamel on which could easily erase to the metal itself, cut off the old “atavism” in the form of remnants of the Soviet still cast-iron pipes. As a rule, in the apartments of the old building you have to completely dismantle and throw out the entire sewer system. Often you can see a giant pipe of 120 mm (left over from the old system) in a tiny combined bathroom , which shamelessly hides the size of an already small room.

Preparatory events 3

The same applies to the old water distribution system. In many old (and not only, unfortunately) apartments, it is made simply monstrous. Not only do the pipes stretching along the ceiling look disgusting, they also reduce the volume of the room. If the bathroom has old plasterboard or other suspended ceilings, they must be dismantled. Most likely, a whole colony of mold fungi is already safely growing beneath them.

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As a rule, not to do without removing the old tile. This should be done by armed with a perforator (having equipped it with a chisel on concrete). By the way, if the tile looks like “nothing yet”, but with pressure on it, a crunch is clearly heard, this indicates its complete separation from the base. Simply put, it keeps only at the expense of the adjacent tile. In this case, its complete removal becomes simply inevitable. The most undesirable (and common) option is laying tiles on cement-sand mortar. It should not remain on the walls at all. Old paint and plaster should be removed with the help of the same punch, but with a nozzle in the form of a round metal brush.

Note! Before you start working on the “brush” job, take care of the safety of the furniture and flooring in the rest of the apartment: close the door as tightly as possible, or seal it with a film canopy at all. It is necessary to work strictly in a respirator, changing filters as often as possible!

Preparatory events 6

After that, we endure all the rest, without touching the sewer risers. In the junction box, disconnect the line supplying the bathroom. Alas, but in the remaining time it is necessary to get along with an extremely portable lamp and extension cords. We begin to “grind” the ceiling with the above brush, also not forgetting about the respirator and goggles. In the houses of the “Brezhnev” type, you may have one rather unpleasant surprise waiting for you: a warming box made of GFL. It definitely needs to be cleaned, because the seamy side of this kind of coating has served as an excellent refuge for mold, fungus and mice for several decades. If the same crate is also found on the ceiling, then the matter is absolutely bad: you will have to put supports and remove it piece by piece, constantly fearing that a large piece of debris will land on your head.

Preparatory events 4

Most often it is necessary to remove the plaster, which in old houses is often made of sand with a slight admixture of cement. If you are very lucky, and good plasterers once worked in your house, then you can get by just leveling and grinding the old coating. You will spend a lot of time for this, but you will be rewarded for your efforts a hundredfold. We remove the old wiring. Next is to dismantle the doors and old doorframes. All of this will be extremely awkward to look at just the repair.

A little bit about the floor

As is the case with the walls, the remnants of the cement-sand mixture should be removed completely, delighting the neighbors with the sounds of the punch. But! If you have no reason to doubt the quality of the screed (you have leaked a bath, but nothing leaked to your neighbors), then you can simply gently clean the floor of the grinder (better known as “Bulgarian) with a grinding diamond wheel. After this, we take bucket and three times we wash the floor. We dry and inspect it carefully: if you find at least one deep crack, get ready for a long and fascinating process of complete replacement of the old screed. If your bathroom does not differ impressive area, it is possible to dodge and make a self-leveling floor: the financial costs will be small, and you can pour the composition directly over the old floor (even with the remnants of cement and tile). However, you need to do a new waterproofing layer in any case.

It is also worth thinking about installing a warm floor in the bathroom. We wrote earlier about how to make a warm water floor with our own hands .


Unfortunately, it will not be possible to save money using ordinary plastic wrap. We’ll have to buy special materials from polyester (polyethylene terephthalate). The joints of the film should be carefully lubricated with any suitable mastic or weld with each other (using a building hair dryer). Overlapping material (not less than 10 cm) is laid on the walls. In the corners of the film simply fold, but in any case not cut! Finally, you can insert new doors. If the room is small, it is highly desirable to put those models that open to the outside.

Stage 2: Rough finish

Pipeline placement

And now it’s time to start work, the results of which will be hidden from view upon completion of the repair. Guided by the previously drawn up plan, we mark the places where hot and cold water is discharged under a bathtub or a shower stall, sink and toilet. We proceed to the replacement of pipelines, and should begin only with sewer pipes. Do not forget to put a sealant on the rubber seals, as in this case the reliability of the joints increases dramatically. If the central riser somehow allows it, it is better to drown it to the wall to the maximum. Despite the fact that a pipe with a diameter of 100 mm fits the toilet bowl, it is better not to spare strength: this is much better than stumbling over the drain pipes for several years. To better understand what you mean, watch the thematic video.

Ideally, you should fill the pipes laid in the openings with mounting foam. This is most true for cold water: this approach minimizes the formation of condensate.

Carefully plan the future water supply, trying to make the pipes pass in as inconspicuous places as possible. Immediately cut through the grooves, guided by the diameter of the pipes you purchased. In advance we put all the filters, ball valves and other accessories. Subsequently, it will be much more difficult to do all this. After that, connect the system to the water and wait. It is desirable not less than a week. During this time, all possible leaks will manifest themselves, and fake Chinese cranes will have time to collapse, having pleased you and neighbors from the lower floors.

Important! The last sentence is a cruel fact of life. Do not save on cranes and couplings! It is better to buy products of a good manufacturer. This is especially true of those cranes that crash into the central risers: their installation is difficult, and the replacement will be an expensive and annoying event, because again you have to turn off the water supply of the whole house.

Some thoughts

All this is just fine, but laying a tunnel (especially for sewage pipes) is extremely difficult, fraught with conflicts with neighbors, and there is a lot of construction waste from such work. In addition, it is impossible to do this in block houses at all, since according to the BTI standards, all work that leads to damage to the reinforcement in the walls is strictly prohibited. Finally, the same sewer pipes should always be within walking distance. How do you imagine cleaning the drain that is hidden in the concrete?

Posting 1

And therefore we would recommend to skip all the pipes on the bottom of the room, closing their slope of galvanized steel. It can easily be glued to a tile or other finishing material (using construction sealant). If there is a need to replace something, the sealant is trimmed with a knife and the decorative slope can be easily removed. The grooves in our proposed version are also required, but in the most minimal quantity: under the mixer and under the boiler (if there is one at all). In general, we would recommend hanging the heater in the toilet (if it is separate) or even in the hallway, making a decorative box for it (again, if the size of this room permits).

Posting 2

Following you can start punching strobe under the wiring. Do not forget that for a washing machine and a boiler (if there is one) professional electricians strongly advise to carry out a separate line. If you decide to leave the wiring in its place, be sure to check its condition. It is possible that due to constant changes in temperature and humidity, the insulation of the wires is already damaged.

Posting 3

Attention! Wiring in the grooves fit, being pulled into the corrugations! This is not only a requirement of electricians, but also a pledge of protection of your apartment from fire in case of a short circuit.

Making a new screed on the floor

Before starting work, the floor should be warmed. Alas, but to use for this purpose popular and cheap expanded clay will not work, as it is too hygroscopic. The best option is glass-magnesite plates. Their cost is slightly higher than the price of drywall. The strength of this material is such that a reinforcing mesh can be laid directly on it and beacons can be placed. It should be borne in mind that the composition of the solution for sexual screed in bathrooms has quite a few distinctive features:

  • First, you should use cement no worse than the 400th mark.
  • Secondly, the sand is only river and well sifted.
  • The ratio of sand and cement – 4: 1.
  • Water should be taken strictly in the same amount in which the cement was used.
  • Calculate 10% of the volume of water, and in this quantity add glue to the mixture.
  • To form a screed in the bathroom should be strictly on the beacons.
Tile 1

After the screed is aligned with the rule, it is adjusted to full smoothness with a half lid. This is a strict requirement due to the fact that the floor surface under the tile must be perfectly flat, without the slightest tilt. After carrying out this work, it is worthwhile to stock up on a serious reserve of patience: the coupler must gain strength for at least 40 days, so you can go somewhere with a light heart.

Read more about self-leveling floor .

Wall Plastering Tips

Tile 2

Of course, plastering walls can only be on beacons, since you need a perfectly flat surface. You will need to make two layers, and the latter will have to be polished properly. Plastered in the usual manner, from the ceiling to the floor. Tip: since in many homes the bathrooms are very cramped, it is convenient not to throw portions of plaster, but to dial using the halves of an ordinary rubber ball.

The waterproofing apron (overlap in 10 cm) can never be cut off: it is simply glued with construction tape to the wall.

Stage 3: Finishing the room

Ceiling work

Tile 3

Oddly enough, but the ceiling will need to be warmed: this simple measure will almost completely eliminate the formation of condensate, which is often the main source of problems in the bathroom. As in the past case, the ideal option is LSU. This time, the plates should be mounted on the screws, carefully filling the joints with mounting sealant. As for the fine finish, ordinary lining or even laminate is best for this purpose (yes, it’s good not only on the floor):

  • If you plan to lay laminate , then it should (on the wrong side, of course) be covered with two layers of PVA glue.
  • Lay the lining on the mounting adhesive or even sealant. To ensure maximum tightness of the connection, a thin sausage of glue is applied to the locking part of each board, the excess of which is removed immediately after the locking joint clicks into place.
  • To eliminate the possibility of the boards falling off, they are propped up with spacers for at least one day.
Tile 4

How reliable is this kind of ceiling? Do not worry: the boards are perfectly glued not only to the ceiling, but also fastened to each other. Secondly, we note that the ceiling is done BEFORE the wall finish. After completion of plastering or other wall covering, the ceiling will “lie” on them, resting against a layer of finishing material.

Important! The holes for the wiring in no case be drilled on the seams. In this case, the joint with time will almost surely disperse!

Tile 5

As for suspended and suspended ceilings. The suspended ceiling in the bathroom, we would not recommend. Humid air will inevitably contribute to the development of mold and fungus (we have already spoken about this above). Tensioning varieties, especially in conditions of small rooms with many angles, are extremely difficult for self-assembly. If you do not have such experience, it is better to immediately contact the professionals. Believe me, you can save a lot of your nerves. Plastering the ceiling is fundamentally little different from the same procedure described by us above (in the case of walls). Do not forget only that the maximum value should be attached to the reinforcing mesh, because without it there is a considerable risk of falling pieces of plaster.

Floor coverings

Tile 6
Tile 7

It is done in almost the same way as in the case of the walls. Glue drips should be removed immediately. The composition should be applied to the wrong side of the tile with a spatula, which is wiped from time to time to avoid the formation of voids and other defects. Remember that stacking is always from the door. This is done in order to cut the pieces of tile under the bath and do not spoil the view. After laying each of them gently knock a rubber mallet, going from the previously laid. Gradually moving to the edge of the tile, they achieve its perfect laying and the complete absence of voids under it.

Important! The rows of cut pieces of tile must be put at the very last turn, after the glue on other parts of the floor has stiffened. This should be done in order not to knock down the styling, not to shift the rows.

Separately it is necessary to stay on those cases when in your bathroom wooden floor is laid. Unlike tile, it is completely safe (not to slip), and it is very pleasant to stand on it with bare legs. In addition, on the wooden floor, you can safely pour the screed(with good waterproofing, of course) and put even heavy cast-iron baths. If the floors are already old, it is very desirable to process them with an electric planer, how to soak it with an emulsion of PVA glue, and then treat it with a good acrylic varnish. A coating prepared in this way may well withstand more than a dozen years of operation. If you need to replace some boards, you should not forget about the gap of 20-25 mm, which should remain at the walls. Before installing the baseboards, this gap is properly filled with assembly foam: due to its plasticity, it will allow the tree to “play” and completely eliminate its deformation.

Tile 8

Wall decoration

As a rule, the walls are decorated with traditional tiles. Perfectly mentioned and the above-mentioned porcelain, but you are unlikely to walk on the walls, at the risk of slipping, and therefore overpay for it is not worth it. Finishing is done with plastic crosses, which are ideal for marking seams. We do not forget to mark in advance the points of exit of pipes and mixers, and then drill holes for them, using a high-quality diamond drill (in order to avoid chips and other defects).

Learn more about how to decorate your bathroom with tiles .

Attention! If decorative caps of large diameter are used to decorate the mixer, then the drill should be bought corresponding. Otherwise, you will be tortured with the jeweler’s accuracy to die out the places for drilling the fastening holes.

As soon as the basic laying of tiles on the walls is finished , it is time to seal the corners. At first, a not too thick “sausage” is squeezed out of a tube with a sealant, a regular plastic film is put on it, and the silicone is pressed through it with the help of a drip tube or a cable section. In this case, a perfectly smooth and slightly concave surface is formed.

Attention! The drips and smeared areas of silicone sealant can be easily cleaned with a flannel cloth previously moistened with regular edible vinegar.

Tile 9
Tile 10

Dressing seams on the wall is carried out using a special putty (read the instructions for the tile). Since there is no silicone in it, it will cost much less than a good sealant. The technology is simple: first, the plastic crosses are taken out, putty is forced into the seam, and then it is leveled with the same cable or pipe from the dropper. In no case can not smear the seams with your own finger! First, it will not bring any benefit to your skin. Secondly, what is more important, on the surface of the composition will remain a lot of your fingerprints. They can please not only detectives, but also mold, which loves to settle in such microscopic defects.

In addition, you can use PVC panels, wallpaper and decorative plaster for wall decoration. Read more about the finishing of the bathroom with PVC panels . Sticky wallpaper is familiar to everyone, so dwell on this is not worth it. As for decorative plasters, the principle of their application differs little from ordinary plastering of walls, and the manufacturer describes all the nuances on the packaging with the products. Finally, it is worthwhile to show a video in which the sequence of all the main works is reflected.