Some questions about fitting IPSL panels onto existing tiles in a shower
I wish to line a shower with panels as the current tiles are not an efficient barrier. There are three walls in an alcove with dimensions of about 1200mm and 900mm. There is an existing shower door running across the otherwise-open 1200mm side. We did not wish to take off the old tiles. Nor did we intend on removing the shower doors, but cutting the panel down its length to butt up to the current door frame.
1. What is the difference between the Aquabord Laminate and the Aquabord PVC T&G panel? 2. Are there any particular types of panel you recommend for my circumstances? 3. If we trim an edge (to shorten or narrow a panel) can this be sealed or will it be a weak point? 4. Likewise, if we cut a hole for pipes or extraction does this present a problem somewhere? 5. Is there anything else you think I should know before deciding which panel and fitting method to use?
Written By Dan
1. All our panels are PVC of some kind – the ‘P’ in IPSL stands for plastic – but the Aquabord Laminate and Aquabord PVC T&G panels differ in construction. The Laminate panels are 10mm thick, 1200mm wide, with a solid core of PVC foam and a laminate front and back face, similar to “Formica”. The Aquabord PVC T&G panels are 10.5mm thick, 1000mm wide, with a corrugated inside – a vertically-running box section. These ones also have tongue-and-groove sections on the sides, so they can be joined into one another along one long wall without the need for joint trim. You can see a full guide to our different panel types on our website by clicking here.
2. Because your alcove has dimensions of 900mm x 1200mm, I’d recommend the Proclad panels or the Aquabord Laminate panels, because these will be wide enough to cover your largest wall with just one panel, meaning you won’t need any joint trims.
3. No, this shouldn't’t be a weak point, but we’d recommend you cap the edge off using a trim. If it’s the bottom of a panel (the part that would meet the shower tray) then it would run onto your base seal trim (either Cladseal, Panseal or Sealux, depending on the type of panel you use) anyway, and if it’s in the corner, then it would meet the corner trim. If this cut edge is at the top of the panel, or a side that doesn't’t go into a corner trim, then we’d recommend you use a capping edge trim, just to ensure that the edge remains secure and watertight.
4. Possibly – it would depend on the pipes but so long as you cut correctly then I don’t anticipate you would have a problem. Sadly we don’t have any trims for capping the edges of curved cuts or round holes, so you would need to use silicone – there are installation videos on our website to view here, and if you take a look at this video and skip forward to 3 minutes 10 seconds in, it will show the method for doing this.
5. If you’re cladding onto existing tiles, then the tiled surface needs to be entirely flat, solid, and dry, with no loose sections. If the tiles are very glossy, you may wish to sand them down first to help create a key for the adhesive. Make sure you use polyurethane adhesive as regular store-bought wall glue will not allow for the natural expansion and contraction of the plastic once it’s on the wall, and so over time it will begin to come away.