Tiles or Shower Wall?

2 Feb 2016
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United Kingdom
Hey all,

I'm in the process of renewing my bathroom and was looking at alternatives to tiling for the shower. I've experienced leaks and failing grout in the past so was looking at the various shower wall options. Does anyone have any opinion on these? There seems to be 3 main options:
  • Plywood with a waterproof laminate
  • PVC corrugated "cladding" type
  • Acrylic sheets (very expensive!)
The cheapest of these options is the PVC but I'm slightly concerned it wont be very strong when fixing the shower unit to it.

Plywood with laminate is an option but something is telling me plywood in a shower can only lead to problems down the line.

Any opinions welcome!

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As a tile only retailer im going to defend the tile option here @NewShoes ;)

Best way to prevent leaks is makes sure the prep is right. Invest in a tanking kit to prevent damage to plasterboard, grouts have come on along way over the years, you can even seal the grouts with a grout protector now.

Yes, these panels might save you some fitting time, but tiles are more permanent.
It's panels for me everytime...
Having seen a tiled shower wall fail (and nearly kill the girlfriend) I'll never have tiles in a shower or over a bath again.

I've used Formica Shower panels (8x4's sheets - laminate either side of 10mm marine ply) but they do not seam to produce those any longer, sadly.
But their is Bushboard 'Nuance' as well as lots of other similar materials.

Do work on using the biggest sheets you ca find, use the product manufacturers recommended sealer. I don't think you will ever reget it.
Fitted my Formica face ply shower 15 years ago still looks like new. Recently put in a pvc panel (smooth not corrugated)shower and also looks great .
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Thanks guys, to be honest it's looking like shower wall is the best option. The chance of leaks through grouting etc causing headaches and more work, it just doesn't seem worth it.

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