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Methods for Preparing Walls and Floors for Installing Cement Board and Hardie backer Board

If you're planning to install tiles in your home, you'll need to prepare your walls and floors first. This is especially important when using cement board and backer board, which provide a stable and durable base for your tiles. In this post, we'll discuss the methods for preparing walls and floors for installing cement board and backer board.


preparing the floor with cement board

Preparing Walls

  1. Clean the walls: Before installing cement board, you need to make sure that the walls are clean and free from any debris or dust. Use a vacuum cleaner or a broom to remove any loose materials.

  2. Apply a primer: Once the walls are clean, apply a primer to the surface. This will help the cement board adhere better to the walls. Allow the primer to dry completely before proceeding.

  3. Measure and cut the cement board: Measure the area where you'll be installing the cement board and cut the board to size using a circular saw. Make sure that the edges of the cement board are staggered to prevent weak spots.

  4. Install the cement board: Apply a layer of thin-set adhesive to the wall using a trowel, and then press the cement board onto the adhesive. Use screws to secure the board to the wall, making sure to countersink them. Repeat the process until all the cement board is installed.

Preparing Floors

  1. Clean the floor: Like the walls, you need to make sure that the floor is clean and free from any debris or dust before installing backer board. Use a vacuum cleaner or a broom to remove any loose materials.

  2. Apply a primer: Apply a primer to the surface of the floor to help the backer board adhere better. Allow the primer to dry completely before proceeding.

  3. Measure and cut the backer board: Measure the area where you'll be installing the backer board and cut the board to size using a circular saw. Make sure that the edges of the backer board are staggered to prevent weak spots.

  4. Install the backer board: Apply a layer of thin-set adhesive to the floor using a trowel, and then press the backer board onto the adhesive. Use screws to secure the board to the floor, making sure to countersink them. Repeat the process until all the backer board is installed.

What is the best?


Cement board and Hardiebacker board are both excellent options for creating a strong and durable base for tile installations. Both materials are made from cement and are reinforced with fibers to make them more stable and resistant to moisture and mold.


The main difference between the two is that Hardie backer board is specifically designed for tile installations and is known for being more durable and reliable than standard cement board. It is made with a unique formulation that is engineered to provide superior strength and stability, making it an excellent choice for high-traffic areas and installations that require added durability.


While both materials are resistant to moisture and mold, Hardiebacker board is specifically engineered to withstand prolonged exposure to water and moisture, making it ideal for use in bathrooms and other areas that are frequently exposed to moisture.

Another advantage of Hardiebacker board is that it is easier to install than standard cement board. It is lighter in weight and easier to cut, which can make the installation process faster and more efficient.


In summary, while both cement board and Hardiebacker board are excellent options for tile installations, Hardiebacker board is generally considered to be the superior product due to its superior strength, durability, and moisture resistance. However, it is also more expensive than standard cement board, so the choice between the two will ultimately depend on your specific project needs and budget.

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