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farmery 03-23-2013 11:58 AM

Shower remodel question
We are redoing a shower in the guestbath. I've gotten several estimates. Some companies will demo the shower down to the subfloor then build the bottom from there on while others have proposed to just remove the tiles and put in new tiles. The shower in question is probably 20 years old. Which one should I go with?

ddawg16 03-23-2013 01:41 PM

Several factors are involved.

Do you have a current leak?

What condition is the underlayment for the existing tile?

If you just replace do you know what is underneath is not damaged?

For what little tile work I have done, putting tile on a surface that already had tile was a royal took longer to clean the surface than it would have taken to just tear it all out and put up new backer...

Personally....I would want to demo it all and inspect. The odds are really good that the companies that want to just replace would most likely get half way in and then tell you that it all needs to be demo'd....and jack up the price more than if you had gone with the full demo in the first place.

These are just my observations....hopefully Jaz will be along shortly to confirm or correct me.

farmery 03-23-2013 01:56 PM

We don't know if there is a current leak because the bathroom is on the slab. As far as we can tell there isn't any leaks. I am with you about the difficulty of putting new tiles on a old surface. Plus the shower is at least 20 years old so who knows what kind of barrier was put under it.

ddawg16 03-23-2013 02:03 PM

Lets wait for Jaz to check in...he is the real expert here...there are some others too....only's Saturday....yard might be awhile....

cleveman 03-23-2013 07:36 PM

I wonder what kind of drain you have and how it is to clean the floor, and how much slope there is to the floor.

It wasn't too long ago when people would just have a floor drain in the basement for their laundry and a/c to discharge into, and they would put a simple mixer above that area and that would be a very rough shower.

All the houses in my area had about a 3x3 area blocked off with 4" block and there was a slope to the floor and a floor drain which led to the other above-mentioned floor drain. That was the 70's.

Next came pvc drains and people started tiling the floor and the surrounding walls.

Nowadays, you're expected to have a waterproof pan in the basement as well. This is to keep water from flowing through the tile surface and through the concrete and into the ground and on through to China. The advantage to the waterproof pan is that the floor will not be waterlogged and get moldy.

That's why I wonder how your present floor is and how often the shower is used. Have you ever walked down there and the floor was covered with mushrooms?

Blondesense 03-23-2013 11:27 PM

How is the shower floor made? Is it tile, or a fiberglass receptor, or what?
A pic may be a good start.

A couple of years ago I re-did our shower. I had never done anything like it before and didn't want to get in over my head so I chose to keep the fiberglass receptor. I wish I hadn't. It looks rather old and beat up against the new tile.

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