WonderBoard Vs. Cement Board: Which One Is The Perfect?

While different substrate material has drawbacks, the backer board is a lifesaver for DIY installation projects. There are different types of substrates on the market.

However, they often warp or buckle easily, leaving various installations like the floor, wall, or tiles of your shower vulnerable. But with the backer board, you don’t have to worry about getting the best foundation your installation projects need.

Below, I have compared WonderBoard and cement board, two of the most common backer board options. So, without further ado, let’s see which is the better choice.

A Quick Comparison Table

Look at the table below to know the difference between these two products.

SpecificationsWonderBoardCement Board
MaterialStable Portland cement, EPS beads, aggregates, and reinforcementCement, water, silica, limestone flour, and Kevlar or fiberglass
FlexibilityHighNot Flexible.
DurabilitySuper durableDecent durability
Water resistanceGreatAverage
Price$0.66 per square foot$0.7 – $8 per square foot

Key Differences Between WonderBoard And Cement Board

Now that you have the primary idea about both products and the specifications, let’s move into the details and see which one performs better.

  • Material
Cement Board

As WonderBoard falls under the category of cement board with some minor upgrades, it’s expected that both backer boards will have similar materials.

So, regarding material, both options are on the same page with cement and fiberglass.

However, WonderBoard used more premium cement like Portland, giving it the upper hand in quality.

  • Weight

Weight is another critical consideration for backer boards, and WonderBoard again seems to have the lead. The lighter backer board offers a better weight-to-strength ratio, suitable for the surface below, and is easier to install.

WonderBoard cement boards are 20% lighter than regular cement boards with reinforced mesh construction.

Also Read:

  • Flexibility

Flexibility might not seem like a big concern for backer boards. However, if you think deeply, it has a significant connection to the durability and installation of backer boards.

In that regard, WonderBoard is flexible, which is not the case for regular cement boards. The flexibility allows WonderBoard to withstand more pressure and installation over a curved surface.

  • Durability

As I mentioned, WonderBoard is nothing but a cement board itself. So, the durability difference is supposed to be not much. Both WonderBoard and regular cement boards should withstand any tiles of heavy items you install on them.

However, premium Portland cement gives WonderBoard a slight upper hand in this matter.

  • Water Resistance

One primary objective of using a backer board is to give installation like floor tiles or walls a secure base and protect from water damage.

In that regard, neither WonderBoard nor regular cement board offers waterproofing.

However, both offer water resistance, which means they do a pretty good job absorbing moisture and providing the necessary protection tiles need.

But, again, WonderBoard has a better record of handling water on outdoor and indoor surfaces.

  • Installation

Proper installation is crucial if you want the best result from your backer board. Both options are the same if you talk about installation time or technicalities.

However, WonderBoard offers an extra feature that makes the installation more manageable. There is a preprinted pattern on the back of WonderBoard to make it easier to mark, cut, and faster, resulting in a more straightforward and precise installation.

  • Price

The price difference between the WonderBoard and a regular cement board isn’t significant. However, if you are installing on a larger scale, that can make a huge difference.

WonderBoard comes in two thicknesses, one is ¼ inch, and the other is 7/16 inch.

A 5f ft. X 3 ft. of WonderBoard of any thickness costs the same $9.98. That makes the price per square foot around $0.66. On the other hand, regular cement boards cost around $0.7 – $8 per square foot, which can be significantly higher than WonderBoard.

Which One Will Be The Best Fit For Your Tiling Plan?

After the detailed discussion, I think the better option between WonderBoard and regular cement board is straightforward. WonderBoard is a better option than traditional cement boards on the armlet from almost every aspect.

If you are going for a large-scale installation project, there is no alternative to using WonderBoard.

Also Read: Differences Between Durock And Wonderboard.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

Is WonderBoard better than cement board?

As per my experience, WonderBoard is a better choice considering the benefits are more practical. For example, WonderBoard performs better in wet areas, and its flexibility makes it resistant to cracking. It also has a premium blend of materials at a lower price, so that's another way of looking at it.

Is WonderBoard and Durock the same thing?

Though both WonderBoard and Durock are backer board, there are quite a few differences between them. For example, Durock is a complete cement board, while WonderBoard is a hybrid of cement with 20% mesh. In addition, the WonderBoard is also heavier. Considering these differences, they are not the same.

Is WonderBoard a cement board?

Yes, you can say WonderBoard falls under the category of a cement board. However, some differences separate WonderBoard from regular cement boards. For example, WonderBoard is more flexible, heavier, and performs better against water damage.

What is WonderBoard used for?

WonderBoard is a cement backer board used for multiple installation projects. Those projects include walls, floors, tiles, ceilings, counters, and vanities. In addition, WonderBoard is used underneath these installations to give them a strong foundation. Then, the surface above WonderBoard becomes consistent and prevents moisture damage.

Final Words

I hope my comparison helped point out the differences between WonderBoard and cement board and decide the best substrate for your installation projects. Both backer boards have pros and cons, making each board suitable for different projects.

One common thing among each board is their guarantee of a solid foundation. With these boards underneath your tiles, floor, or wall, your installation will be much longer lasting, crack resistant, and waterproof.

Clyde Mitchell

I run a hardware store nearby Court Anaheim, CA. Over the last 7 years, I have been blogging about home improvement and yes, I own ReliefInBath.com From me and this website, you can expect some useful tips on great ideas for a modern bathroom.

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