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utilitylocator 02-14-2009 03:41 PM

condensation/vapor barrier question
 
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I am doing a bathroom remodel. I ripped out the old tub/surround removed all the old sheetrock. No water damage in wall and insulation was all dry. Vapor barrier was intact and in good shape. I set a new tub and surround, resheetrocked and replumbed. I now notice a water/condensation problem. There seems to be a good amount of moisture in the wall behind the insulation. It seems to be collecting at the bottom of the wall and pooling on the floor. when I slipped my hand under the vapor barrier and felt the wall behind the insulation, it was wet. More like a dew type moist and frosty. The insulation is moist a little in the back near the exterior wall but is dry in the front near the vapor barrier. In all, the total amount of water on the floor is about equivilant to 1 or 2 cups maybe. My hypothisis is that there is air passing through the exposed wall because it is not sheetrocked yet. My thought is that it is condensation on the exterior wall caused from the extreme temputure difference from the outside and inside. Outside temp is about 15 f. and inside about 70f most of the day untill the woodstove dies out at nite than it will get down to about 58 f. or so for a few hours. It was dry for days after we installed the tub. I noticed it at the same time it warmed up outside to 29 f. from about -18 f. It is not getting worse, but not drying up eithor. I wonder about the steam and condensation from the shower adding to the problem? I am not a plumber or carpenter and this is very new to me. I dont want to seal up the hole only to find out I have a bigger problem later because I didnt "fix" it right. Any help would be greatly apreciated!

Ron6519 02-15-2009 08:04 AM

There's abreak in the vapor barrier somewhere. The warm and cold air are mixing behind the current vapro barrier.
Remove the sheetrock and seal up all the openings. The vapor barrier at the bottom should have beem sealed with a caulking material, which by the picture it wasn't. Was the ceiling barrier dropped down so it overlapped the wall barrier? Were the outlets and switch boxes sealed? What about the ceiling lights?
With the temps you described, the vapor barrier is critical. Any voids will cause you water issues and with water issues, comes mold issues.
Ron

utilitylocator 02-15-2009 12:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ron6519 (Post 230561)
There's abreak in the vapor barrier somewhere. The warm and cold air are mixing behind the current vapro barrier.
Remove the sheetrock and seal up all the openings. The vapor barrier at the bottom should have beem sealed with a caulking material, which by the picture it wasn't. Was the ceiling barrier dropped down so it overlapped the wall barrier? Were the outlets and switch boxes sealed? What about the ceiling lights?
With the temps you described, the vapor barrier is critical. Any voids will cause you water issues and with water issues, comes mold issues.
Ron

Yes the barrier was overlapped at the top and the boxes were placed in front of the barrier and sealed. We did not adhere the vapor barrier with any adhesive at all though. Good thing is that it is only in that one area. I will seal the vapor barier realy well and go from there. I do not have the funds to start over so ripping it out is not an option....for now. If it is realy that bad than I will live with it through the summer and start over next winter with more funds..I guess...

utilitylocator 02-16-2009 02:43 PM

Well all the water went away on the floor and is way dryer in the wall.. Thats good. I hope. I am going to loosly push in some extra insulation in the wall and seal the vapor barrier realy well as far as I can reach. I noticed that that is the only problem area so sealing it right there will hopefuly fix it...


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