How to Install Cement Backer Board to Metal Studs

Things You\’ll Need

  • Tape measure

  • Cement backerboard

  • Builders level

  • Circular saw and masonry blade

  • Power screwdriver

  • 1-inch sheet metal screws

  • 2-inch fiberglass-webbed joint ribbon

  • Construction adhesive (optional)

Cement backerboard, often referred to as "tilebacker," is a substrate material for stone, tile, terrazzo or other wall finish materials. Cement backerboard is perfect for wet and high-moisture applications, such as kitchens and bathrooms, where you'll typically install the panels over a moisture-resistant drywall or plywood sheathing. Cement backerboard mounts to metal stud framing using the same procedure as wood framing.

Step 1

Layout the position of the cement backerboard panel on the wall. Cut the sheet, if necessary, using a circular saw mounted with a carborundum masonry blade to ensure that both vertical edges of the backerboard align with a metal stud for stable backing.

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Step 2

Position the backerboard sheet against the wall surface and use a builders level to level the panel.

Step 3

Secure the backerboard sheet into place with sheet metal screws through the panel into the metal framing using a power screwdriver. Space the sheet metal screws about 6 to 8 inches apart. Be certain to drive them to flush with the backerboard surface to prevent interference with the subsequent wall materials.

Step 4

Repeat the previous steps to install the remaining backerboard panels. Complete the installation by covering all of the vertical and horizontal joints between the sheets with adhesive fiberglass-webbed joint ribbon.


If you desire additional connection of the cement backerboard to the wall, add a continuous bead of construction adhesive to the back surface before screwing the panel to the wall.