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Old 04-13-2011, 07:52 AM   #16
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Mold resolution help needed


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Originally Posted by Stephen S. View Post
Only good solution is to show your neighbour the problem and persuade your neighbour to remodel his side to make things right...
My only problem with this is which neighbor? The one obvious or the one with the same bath configuration above and below. They probably have the same problem, whether they know it or not, and are contributing moisture and mold to the walls as well.

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Old 04-13-2011, 08:47 AM   #17
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Mold resolution help needed


Thanks for the helpful replies... hopefully you can sense my frustration a bit .

I think I'm futilly running a dehumidifier in there hoping that solves the problem .

I'm at a decision point right now. Shinny new supplies (greenboard, CBU, fireboard, new toilet, new tile, etc) are piled up in the condo ready to go, wife is eagerly anticipating/demanding I move forward ("why can't you just spray some 409, wipe it down and move on?") and I'd kinda like to make progress too. On the other hand, as you've said, do I bring over neighbor to see first hand, do I bring in HOA people to see first hand, do I call an attorney and go that route?

You know, I knew there would be a mold issue, and when searchign this forum and other websites online, I was always amazed at how helpless and "frantic" other posters with mold issues seemed to be... I thought they were overreacting.. now I get it.

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Originally Posted by sdsester View Post
My only problem with this is which neighbor? The one obvious or the one with the same bath configuration above and below. They probably have the same problem, whether they know it or not, and are contributing moisture and mold to the walls as well.
You are 100% correct. There are 300+ units in this development. Even the ones renovated since have to have this recurring problem.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:44 AM   #18
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Mold resolution help needed


You have great photos but take more if you need it. I wouldn't finish that bath without better resolving this.

I would simultaneously talk with at least the HOA president and sit down with an attorney to at least discuss this and your options. No reason this has to turn nasty or litigious but you may need some leverage.
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Old 04-13-2011, 03:59 PM   #19
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Mold resolution help needed


Your bath is gutted and the wall is exposed. If your neighbors are contributing to the mold the wall will stay wet because they're still using their baths.
If it has stayed dry, it was an issue with your bath.
You can start rebuilding when you resolve the mold remediation.
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Old 04-13-2011, 05:41 PM   #20
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Mold resolution help needed


My suggestion is to seal THEIR mold out of YOUR space any way you can. If you can get cooperation out of the HOA or the neighbors, go for it. Chances are though your neighbors are not going to want tear out their tub surround and reno their bathroom until they are good and ready to do so.

Now, as to how to seal out their problem. I suggest you get some one inch thick high density extruded foam sheets for the home improvement store of your choice (DOW is blue, Owens Corning is pink). One inch is adaquate because you are not using it for thermal insulation. You cut that to fit in between your wall studs against that nasty moldy drywall. Then you fill in the gaps around the edges of your foam sheets and any holes with Great Stuff "Gaps and Cracks". You do not need to glue the foam sheets to the back of your neighbor's wall. The Great stuff them hold it in place.

The other thing is how ridgid are those metal studs? They should already be plumb and flush. If they are, that is a big plus where your new tile surround is concerned. But If there is a lot of give to them as you push in, you may want to consider stiffining them up with some 2X2 or 2X3 lumber, thatever you can fit in between there and secure them to the studs with screws. That way you won't have to worry about cracking your grout if you lean too hard on the wall.

Once that mess is sealed in and your walls are prepped, I think you have the steps for tiling already.
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:07 PM   #21
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Mold resolution help needed


I don't mean to throw more mud in your eye, but before you start putting it back together, don't forget one of the things you pulled out was:

Quote:
5/8" Firecode board
I'm not going to pretend to be knowledgeable in this area, but my understanding is there are codes regarding firebreaks between apartments (those pesky codes again) so you probably want to do a bit more research and get this back in.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:08 PM   #22
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Mold resolution help needed


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
Your bath is gutted and the wall is exposed. If your neighbors are contributing to the mold the wall will stay wet because they're still using their baths.
If it has stayed dry, it was an issue with your bath.
You can start rebuilding when you resolve the mold remediation.
Ron
Ron - its both that contributed.. but my side is going to be solved (partially, as the ventilation issue will always be there) as I rebuild to be water/moisture proof properly (based on guidance I've learned here). My issue is their side and _containing_ as best I can, as I clearly can not force them to deal with it. I'm not really prepared to leave my master bathroom like this for an indeterminate amount of time while I wait for my neighbors to perhaps redo their bathroom. So, I'm looking for the best "containment" strategy here I guess.

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Originally Posted by Jim F View Post
My suggestion is to seal THEIR mold out of YOUR space any way you can. If you can get cooperation out of the HOA or the neighbors, go for it. Chances are though your neighbors are not going to want tear out their tub surround and reno their bathroom until they are good and ready to do so.

Now, as to how to seal out their problem. I suggest you get some one inch thick high density extruded foam sheets for the home improvement store of your choice (DOW is blue, Owens Corning is pink). One inch is adaquate because you are not using it for thermal insulation. You cut that to fit in between your wall studs against that nasty moldy drywall. Then you fill in the gaps around the edges of your foam sheets and any holes with Great Stuff "Gaps and Cracks". You do not need to glue the foam sheets to the back of your neighbor's wall. The Great stuff them hold it in place.
Jim - I'm curious about the foam sheets vs. poly sheeting? Any pros/cons?

Quote:
The other thing is how ridgid are those metal studs? They should already be plumb and flush. If they are, that is a big plus where your new tile surround is concerned. But If there is a lot of give to them as you push in, you may want to consider stiffining them up with some 2X2 or 2X3 lumber, thatever you can fit in between there and secure them to the studs with screws. That way you won't have to worry about cracking your grout if you lean too hard on the wall.

Once that mess is sealed in and your walls are prepped, I think you have the steps for tiling already.
Good idea... some are not as rigid as I would like, was going to get some metal studs to butt up against, I wasn't sure you could "mix" wood and metal studs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
I don't mean to throw more mud in your eye, but before you start putting it back together, don't forget one of the things you pulled out was:



I'm not going to pretend to be knowledgeable in this area, but my understanding is there are codes regarding firebreaks between apartments (those pesky codes again) so you probably want to do a bit more research and get this back in.
Good eye... thanks, I was planning on reinstalling the firecode board first. Man, ya'll are good!!

Thanks all, keep it coming!! I'd go crazy if it wasn't for all the help/responses. I truly appreciate it all!
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:11 PM   #23
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Mold resolution help needed


Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
I don't mean to throw more mud in your eye, but before you start putting it back together, don't forget one of the things you pulled out was:



I'm not going to pretend to be knowledgeable in this area, but my understanding is there are codes regarding firebreaks between apartments (those pesky codes again) so you probably want to do a bit more research and get this back in.
I thought about that too but let's face it that entire condo is so boogered up already between the lack of external ventillation for the dryer and bath vents and the mold running rampant. I figured he would be fire protected enough between the neighbor's moldy 5/8" drywall and the 1/2" CBU, thinset and tile he is putting up.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:25 PM   #24
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Mold resolution help needed


Foam board pros: If properly applied and sealed it will keep out moisture, vapor and air. Your neighbor's mold could grow 2 inches thick and it won't effect you on your side. If it were an outer wall I believe it has an R value of around 10 per inch. Thermal insulation is not important here or you would want the two inch thock stuff. It may add some sound insulation but not as efficiently as some of the wooly type insulations.

Cons: Well, it is a little expensive, buy the larger sheets- 4X8 and cut to size rather than the 2X8 size. It is flammable so should be isolated from electrical cable and open flames.

Here's an archived pic from my bathroom project.
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Mold resolution help needed-2010ujl21_2.jpg  
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:36 PM   #25
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Mold resolution help needed


Whatever you use there should get approved by local BI.
Because Foam board is highly flammable, using it here may
compromise the fire rating of that wall.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:53 PM   #26
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You seem to be under a misconception about this.
You can't contain someone elses water. All you can do is trap it in the wall. Once it's trapped, the mold cycle will begin again and there's nothing you can do to stop it.
I'd speak to your neighbor about this. If he blow's you off, you can move or get a lawyer.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:58 PM   #27
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If there is evidence of water coming in from your neighbors side, and you've said there is, then point it out to them. If they choose not to do anything contact a lawyer. I'm not one to deal with lawyers but in this case there are valid reasons. One being it is a risk to you and your families health and welfare, and it has the potential to be a monetary risk. What is the value of a house filled with mold? It's a lot less than one without. Try to get a loan on a place with mold, you can't, until it has been "remediated."

For your wife, doesn't she understand that whatever you do, without fixing the problem, means that it'll only need to be repaired again? At substantial cost.

I'd also consider the board of health. The health hazards of mold are known. Covering it up is not the correct solution.
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Old 04-14-2011, 07:33 AM   #28
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Because it is not only flammable but burns and melts hot? Knowingly using foamboard in an interior space could completely negate your fire insurance claim (or that of your neighbors) should something dreadful happen. And if the buyer's inspector spots it when you sell this thing you are going to be asked to remove it or the deal will collapse.

If you use it, and I wouldn't since you will be violating fire code, keep it away from electrical as mentioned. But doing this immediately negates what you were trying to accomplish with it does it not? You will no longer have the seal you want.

You're trying to dodge something here you really need to deal with. I understand the frustration but if you bandaid this it is just going to come back to bite you, probably at a time you are unable to deal with it, if you don't address it now. And what if your neighbor does his/her bath next year, finds mold inside, and insists you tear yours apart again because they did go to the HOA or consult an attorney? Sorry.

I actually don't mind most lawyers but still use them mainly for air tight and fair to both parties contracts and I pay good ones. In more years than I care to share I have litigated once (other than for liens and collection) and been litigated against once. I prevailed but that is not the issue. A good lawyer can establish a playing field you don't have right now.

A good one will ask if you have talked with the HOA or the neighbor before huffing and puffing at anyone.

By the way, do you speak to your immediate neighbor? Have you at least shown them what is going on? Whether they know it or not they are as involved and at risk as you are at the moment. More so if you install that foamboard. You might be surprised at the level of cooperation even if a bathroom renovation was not on the top of their priority list.

Last edited by user1007; 04-14-2011 at 07:48 AM.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:59 AM   #29
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The way I see it you have two options at this point.

1) Replace the firebreak, seal everything up as well as you can, built your shower and cross your fingers. Maybe let your neighbors have a peek at what's growing in their wall if you feel like it.

OR

2) Everyone gets involved: your neighbors, the HOA, the building department, and very possibly everyone's lawyers. And if you're lucky you may get your shower finished in two or three years. Your HOA regulations need to change. Do you want to make it your battle, or do you want to live with a damp moldy bathroom?

I'm not going to recommend one plan of action over the other.

The only option I see between the two is to have a friend in the complex go to the building department and say "I'm thinking of remodeling my bathroom, but the HOA won't allow any ventilation. What can I do?"
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Old 04-14-2011, 02:08 PM   #30
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The only option I see between the two is to have a friend in the complex go to the building department and say "I'm thinking of remodeling my bathroom, but the HOA won't allow any ventilation. What can I do?"
Careful with this one. The building department will pull the inspections to see who took the bribes to sign off on this in the first place. They will insist on having a look behind all walls and could call the health department to have everybody replace the baths all at once.

Try getting rid of your place under those circumstances. Hopefully the HOA will realize the sensible thing to do hear is help you and your neighbor out to start and others as the need for renovations continue.

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