How to Use Plastic Bead Board as a Shower Surround

A recent product, plastic bead board, is an effective mold-resistant product to use as a shower surround. It is a durable exterior product that is made of PVC and has the appearance of wainscoting. Plastic bead board is less expensive than tile and more durable than thin plastic inserts. The texture will add visual appeal to your shower and increase the value of your home. Green E-Board is strongly recommended to be used instead of cement board or drywall behind the plastic bead board as mold and mildew cannot grow on this construction material.

Preparing Walls

Step 1

Remove faucet, spigot and shower head.

Step 2

Protect the tub with plastic or heavy paper taped to the tub.

Step 3

Remove existing shower wall insert or tile.

Step 4

Scrape off all caulk with a heavy plastic spackle blade.

Step 5

Check for mold. If mold is present consider replacing any moldy drywall and/or wood. Use a solution of one part bleach and one part water to spray any visible mold on surfaces that will not be removed. Install Green E-Board if wall boards are to be replaced. Green E-Board is a moisture-resistant drywall product that will not grow mold or mildew.

Installing Green E-Board

Step 6

Measure each section of the shower surround.

Step 7

Cut pieces of Green E-Board to fit so edges will line up with existing framing. Mark where each piece will be cut and lay a straight edge on the cut line. Use the utility knife to create a deep score in the Green E-Board. Push down on one side of the Green E-Board to break the piece off.

Step 8

Measure and mark placement in the piece of Green E-Board for pipes. Use a drill bit the same size as the pipes to drill holes so the pipes will fit through the Green E-Board.

Step 9

Screw Green E-Board pieces to framing with drywall screws.

Step 10

Apply a thin coat of joint compound where the pieces of Green E-Board meet on walls and corners.

Installing Plastic Bead Board

Step 11

Starting from a back corner, measure the shower area, mark each piece and cut to fit with a circular saw.

Step 12

Install the first piece tight to the corner. Apply a thick squirt of glue on the back of the bead board. Check with a level to be sure the edge is plumb. Nail into place by nailing on an angle from the tongue towards the board so the end of the nail goes past the tongue and the next piece will fit snug on the tongue without hitting the nail. The nail should not be visible on the back side of the tongue. Space nails 6 inches apart with one in the top and one in the bottom along the edge of the tongue as described. Install subsequent pieces by running a thin bead of caulk in the groove and sliding the groove onto the tongue and repeating the process of gluing and nailing into place.

Step 13

Measure the width of the area the end piece must fit at corners. Mark the top, bottom and middle. Use a straight edge to draw a line on the plastic bead board. Cut with a hand saw. Apply a larger amount of glue on end pieces, then gently push the piece onto the groove of the previous piece and push into place. Carefully nail on the edge to hold in place.

Step 14

Use a drill with a drill bit the same size as the pipes to cut out the area for the pipes to fit through the bead board.

Step 15

Caulk around the pipes, the bottom of the plastic bead board and in the corners.

Step 16

Cut manufactured trim with a mitered edge and nail into place around the bottom and top of the plastic bead board.

Step 17

Caulk around the bottom of the trim.

Step 18

Cut manufactured corner trim and install on corners of the shower surround.

Step 19

Reinstall plumbing fixtures.