Tile Fix Direct Blog


How To Waterproof Your Wetroom Using The Orbry Waterproofing System

Orbry Waterproof System

In traditional bathrooms grout, tiles, and waterproof adhesive help keep moisture out of the walls, however as wetrooms will be subject to much more water on both the walls and floors, an extra layer of waterproofing is required. This tanking helps protect wetrooms and walk in showers from leaks, which could be inconvenient and costly to fix in the future. Wet room supplier Orbry have a broad range of products including the Orbry Waterproofing System. Using the Orbry 2-Part Waterproofing System is a simple way to create a waterproof seal within a wetroom. The 2-Part Orbry synthetic latex tanking system is combined with Norcros Permalayer to create a waterproof and crack-free tiled finish.

Benefits Of The Orbry Waterproofing System

  • Waterproof
  • Suitable for applications on timber or concrete substrates
  • Ready for use on screeds after only 48 hours
  • Insulating
  • Ideal for use with underfloor heating
  • Doubles up as a decoupling membrane, as well as a Waterproofing System
  • Requires much less adhesive, compared to competitor membranes
  • This Orbry Waterproofing System does not require joint tape
  • Suitable for all types of tile

The Orbry Waterproofing System will fix 4m² of Permalayer. Each kit contains:

  • 8kg cement-based Waterproofing Adhesive Powder
  • 2.4 litres Waterproofing Admixture

This Waterproofing System is suitable for use on both timber and concrete floors, as well as for use alongside underfloor heating.


Before applying this system to your substrate, you must ensure that it is clean and dry. This surface should be level, even, and able to support the additional weight of tiles to be fixed.

  • Concrete/Cement Applications: It is important to leave new screeds for a minimum of 48 hours before application.
  • Existing Glazed Surfaces: Degrease the entire surface before applying a slurry-bonding coat (1 part Prime Bond:2 parts cement-based adhesive) using a brush and allow to dry.
  • Water Resistant Chipboard (Flooring Grade): Using countersunk screws, the boards must be fixed to joists at a maximum of 300mm centres. Insert additional noggins where necessary.
  • Tongue And Groove Floorboards: Follow the preparation for Water Resistant Chipboard, and then glue the edges of the boards. Prime with a coat of neat Prime Bond and allow to dry.
  • Plywood: Ensure plywood is WBP or Marine grade, with a minimum thickness of 15-18mm to prevent deflection under load. Then prime both sides and all the edges of the plywood board with Prime Bond. Screw countersunk screws in maximum 300mm centres between boards and joists.
  • Plywood Overlay To Existing Timber Floors: Again, the plywood must be WBP or Marine grade, and a minimum of 15mm thick and primed all over with Prime Bond. Screw into place through the existing timber floor as well as the joists, staggering the joints (with 300mm centres).

Mixing The Orbry Waterproofing System

Firstly, shake the bottle of Waterproofing Admixture thoroughly, this should result in an even dispersion of colour in the bottle. This should then be dispensed into a bucket, and gradually incorporate the Waterproofing Adhesive Powder by stirring. This should result in a smooth lump-free mortar, which is thick enough to hold the adhesive ribs without slumping. Once mixed, this product has a pot life of 30 minutes at 20°C, so it is essential to only mix enough material for 30 minute’s application.


Use a suitable notched trowel to apply an even bed of 2mm of mixed product to the prepared substrate. Roll out the Permalayer onto the adhesive bed. Press the tanking membrane firmly into the adhesive bed, allowing the Orbry Waterproofing Adhesive to push through the holes in the Permalayer. Ensure no gaps are left in the adhesive bed. To guarantee a 100% coverage, Orbry recommends a skim, coat of the Waterproofing Adhesive is applied on top of the Permalayer.

Joints between walls and floors, as well as shower trays, can be waterproofed using Orbry Waterproof Tape and Orbry Sealing Compound.

Underfloor Heating

Underfloor heating mats and cables should be laid on top of the Orbry Waterproofing System and bedded into a screed of Pro 50 Levelling Compound. This must be left with the heating turned off for 14 days , and then brought up to operating temperature gradually (5°C/24 hours).

Both the Orbry 2-Part Waterproofing System and the Permalayer are available to order online at Tile Fix Direct.

Product Feature: Orbry Board

Orbry Board

Orbry are always trying to make wet rooms easy by providing a complete solution. Part of this range of comprehensive wet room products are Orbry boards – also known as tile backer boards or insulation boards. The boards create a stable and waterproof backing for use when insulating a room or tanking a wet area.

Each Orbry board is reinforced with glass fibre and coated on both sides with polymer-modified cement, making them strong but also lightweight and easy to cut. Orbry board can be cut easily with a utility knife, and even the largest boards weigh less than 10kg and can be handled and fixed by one person. The insulating boards can be used on walls and floors for a number of different applications:

Uses for Orbry Board

  • Waterproofing for wet rooms
  • Creating partition walls
  • Dry lining insulation
  • Backing board for fixing tiles
  • Thermal insulation layer with underfloor heating

Orbry boards are available in a range of sizes, the standard size is 1220 x 600mm with a range of thicknesses between 6mm and 50mm. Long Orbry boards, measuring 2440 x 600mm, are also available in thicknesses from 10mm to 50mm. There are a number of benefits from using Orbry board including:

Benefits of Orbry Board

  • Waterproof
  • Suitable for walls and floors
  • Lightweight
  • Suitable for all types of tiles
  • Insulating
  • Easy to install
  • Easy to cut to size
  • Hold hanging weight of up to 60kg per m2

The below video shows how to install an Orbry wet room shower tray and Orbry tile backer boards.

Product Feature: Schluter KERDI-BOARD


Schlüter KERDI-BOARD is a tile backer board made from extruded XPS hard foam with cement-free reinforcing material on both sides and fleece webbing to enhance anchoring to the tile adhesive. These multifunctional tile backer boards can be used to create a smooth and even surface for tiling, as a structural panel, and as a waterproof layer beneath tiles. Tile Fix Direct is now stocking Schluter KERDI-BOARD in 5mm and 12.5mm thicknesses, perfect for tile installations, waterproofing, and dry lining.

In many new buildings and renovation projects the substrates are not suitable for tiling directly, particularly in areas with high moisture. Often this type of application will require waterproofing, which can be done easily using Schluter KERDI-BOARD. The Schluter tile backer boards can be used to create a level substrate for tiling over masonry, stud walls, concrete, plaster and existing tiles. The installation method will depend on the type of substrate and use, see the Schluter KERDI-BOARD Technical Data Sheet for further information.

The Schluter KERDI-BOARD allows for quick and easy cutting, with gridlines printed on the surface creating 10x10mm squares to use as a guide. The boards can be cut to size and shape using a simple utility knife. Once installed the waterproof boards are completely smooth and level, and remain free from distortion, decay and rotting.

Schluter KERDI cross section

Benefits of Schluter KERDI-BOARD

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to cut to size with a knife
  • Can be used on all substrates
  • Suitable for use with ceramic and natural stone tiles
  • Simple to cut to size using printed gridlines
  • Suitable for creating level substrates in floor
  • Waterproof and can withstand typical chemical stresses of ceramic tile coverings
  • Comes with 10 year warranty

This video shows just some of the things you can do with Schluter KERDI-BOARD

How To Install Marmox Tile Backer Board To Floors

Marmox boards on floors

Tile backer boards are extremely useful when tiling wet areas as they create a smooth and even surface to tile on to whilst also providing a waterproof barrier beneath the tiles. If you are also using electric underfloor heating, tile backer boards create an insulating layer which stops heat from escaping below.

When installing tile backer board like Marmox Multiboard to floors, the method will depend on the subfloor type and use of the area. For example, waterproof tape will be needed in wet areas such as walk in showers and wet rooms. Multiboard can hold up to 40 tonnes per m2 on floors.

Marmox Board Floor Installation

Installing Marmox boards using Adhesive

This method is suitable for most floor types and any thickness of tile backer board can be used on concrete or sheet timber, however a minimum thickness of 10mm is required for floor boards.

1. Make sure the sub floor is level, and dirt and dust free.

2. Comb on a cement based flexible adhesive using a 6-8mm notched trowel.

3. Push each board into the adhesive making sure they are level and laid in a staggered, or brick bond, pattern.

4. Tape all the joints with reinforcing tape, if the area needs to be waterproof add self-adhesive waterproof tape to all corners and joints.

5. The Marmox boards are now ready for tiling, if you are installing electric underfloor heating lay this directly on top of the boards and tile over.

Installing Marmox boards using Screws

The screw method for installing tile backer board is used to fix on to wooden floors.

1. Make sure the sub floor is level, and dirt and dust free and there are no loose boards.

2. Fix the boards in a staggered, or brick bond pattern, using stainless steel screws and washers every 300mm. These should be places 1 inch from the edge of each board and should be at least 30mm into the floor below.

3. Tape all the joints with reinforcing tape, if the area needs to be waterproof add self-adhesive waterproof tape to all corners and joints.

4. The Marmox boards are now ready for tiling, if you are installing electric underfloor heating lay this directly on top of the boards and tile over.

For further information see the Marmox Board Installation Guide.

Planning and Installing Wet Room Flooring

Planning and Installing Wet Room Flooring

When planning your wet room or walk in shower it is extremely important to carefully plan and install the flooring to avoid any dangerous and costly problems in the future. Each part of wet room flooring from the waterproofing to the tiles is extremely important, and in this blog we’ll take you through the things you need to consider before installing wet room flooring, as well as installation options.

Things to consider before installing wet room flooring:

  • Construction of the substrate
  • The placement of the shower tray
  • The size of the shower tray
  • If electric underfloor heating will be added
  • Which waterproofing method you will use

Wet room flooring installation methods will depend on your substrate and choice of waterproofing methods. If you are tiling over timber it is important that the boards are rigid enough to cope with the weight of boards, tiles and foot traffic. Check the individual installation guidelines for your chosen waterproofing method to check it is suitable for your substrate.

Once the shower tray is installed and the walls have been waterproofed you can begin waterproofing the floor. If you are not including electric underfloor heating the best option for waterproofing is using tile backer boards such as those from Orbry or Marmox. As well as waterproofing, tile backer boards can be used to raise the height of the floor by 10mm to sit flush with a walk-in shower tray.

If you are planning on installing electric underfloor heating a waterproof uncoupling membrane is a better option than tile backer boards for your wet room flooring. This is thinner and therefore will not raise the overall height of the floor more than the shower tray. The decoupling membrane will stop any movement in the substrate effecting the tiles above, as well as creating an insulated layer beneath the electric underfloor heating to project the heat upwards.

Once the entire wet room is watertight you can begin tiling. As a wet room contains a level access shower, water is more likely to splash throughout the room. This can create a slippery surface, therefore we would recommend using non-slip mosaic tiles to avoid any falls.

You can read more about specific wet room flooring installation methods online.

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