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Old 07-16-2009, 03:43 PM   #31
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Could you briefly explain the difference between the typical classic shower receptor and a KERDI shower?
Already did that yesterday my friend, check my previous post. Yesterday, 02:48 PM #19

You can also go to the Schluter website I gave you and see it for yourself.

Now I'm beginning to think you are pulling my leg.


Last edited by Bud Cline; 07-16-2009 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 07-16-2009, 03:52 PM   #32
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Hi Bud,

I'll take some photos and upload them later tonight.

Sorry Bud, I'm not trying to pull your leg. I'm very thinly spread out across a variety of "priorities" right now. I'll definitely more closely check out #19. Stay tuned for photos.

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Old 07-16-2009, 04:10 PM   #33
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There are good Kerdi videos on youtube as well.

Whatever system you choose, pay very close attention to proper installation of the mud pan. Hint: It isn't poured concrete in the conventional sense, it is packed in place with very little water content.

Schluter sells foam pans and matching drains that work slick as heck. Expensive, but slick.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:19 PM   #34
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A few more photos coming. I was maxed out at 6 for this message.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:30 PM   #35
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The first photo in the series was taken as soon as I returned from vacation. The cement board was placed directly onto the subfloor. I included a photo of the new toilet area installation just for kicks. I was a bit surprised to see that the pipe is not flush with the floor. Can you see how that is?

I don't have any photos showing shower progress between photo 1 and the time photo 3 was taken. Note the curb or treshold... it's made of 2x4s. The How To site Bud sent shows the curb construction very differently. I was quite impressed with his how-to site and I will likely print the site and have it in hand when I speak to the contractor. If anyone has any more advice about how to talk to this person I am all ears. Does anyone think he might want to try a redo? If he asks for this should I allow it??? even if he suggests being able to follow the directions on that site?

In photo 4 you see the tile having been pryed from the wall. Apparently it was a mistake. I'm told the glass wall is to be chanel set and he mistakenly put a tile where the glass would but up against the wall. When I saw the tile laying on the ground I was prompted to start researching this to check the quality of my contractor's work. Without seeing this peice off the wall I may have never questioned a thing.

In the very next photo you see the remnants of even more tile having fallen from the wall. This is what I returned home to late last night after a trip to Toronto. What really frustrated me... the travertine tile that fell broke up some of the 2x2 ceramic tile on the floor. For me... this was the last straw and it broke my back. I halted work this morning on the way to work.

In the next photo you can see how low the drain sits within the ceramic tile. Um... won't I be stepping on that all the time and thinking it should be more flush? I realize not perfectly so... but goodness... this must be an 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep??? When I asked the contractor about it he claimed it was necessary to assure drainage. Hogwash... my level tells me there's no slope to the drain and I'll have standing water everywhere.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:33 PM   #36
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An incomplete list of SERIOUS problems I see:

1) plywood walls. They should be backerboard, never plywood.
2) wood curb
3) wonderboard on the floor
4) no membrane on the improperly made base
5) sheetrock in the shower
6) he didn't even thinset and tape the wonderboard seams, even if it were ok to use on the shower floor
7) there's of course no waterproof membrane behind the tile on the walls = mold and rot in a hurry

Might as well start tearing it out.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:33 PM   #37
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This is all I took.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:38 PM   #38
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My friend, I so feel bad for you, that's for sure. You're in a tough situation but I assure you that this hack of a contractor doesn't deserve a dime from you. The work is amateurish at best, not to mention he couldn't do it more wrong if he tried.

I've got to ask...Why on earth are there two drains in the shower floor??? Never seen that before!
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:39 PM   #39
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The first photo shows how the travertine has been laid onto plywoon on the left hand wall. When I asked about this I was told that plywood was necessary to make it more sturdy and extra sturdiness was necessary because it is on this wall that the 77 pound glass door will be hinged.

The next photo shows an upclose shot of the curb. You can see how far the ceramic lies from the wall. Things are definitely not squared up.

The next photo shows an upclose shot of the tile laid up against the wall.

The next photo shows the bench. You can see how the tile joints/seems aren't straight.

The last shot shows an upclose shot of the curb but from the other side where the 2x4s are still visable.

Anyhow... I hope these photos help you to understand and see what's going on here. I''ll take any additional feedback anyone can provide.

I'm particularly interested to hear any advise for my face-to-face which is looking more and more like Monday. I've been stressed... I'd like to try and relax on Sunday.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:48 PM   #40
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Out of curiousity... Anythoughts on how long amateurish-construction like this might last before there was a significant water problem?

Also, any sense for how much someone might charge to come in and fix all this for me and do it right? That is... the shower and bathroom floor? I know... hard to say and it's likely to vary greatly. Just curious as to your opinion. What would you charge to redo it right?

Thank you.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:50 PM   #41
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Plywood's ok on the wall as long as it isn't the substrate for the tile. Backerboard over plywood would be just fine.

For your face to face you just need to be honest. Tell him that you've sought advice from industry professionals (he doesn't need to know who but the TCNA would be a good example) regarding accepted practice for shower installations. You had concerns and those concerns have now been justified. Explain that this tile shower in no way manages the water that it will be exposed to, and that the tile and grout itself is widely known to allow water to permeate. I'd personally offer to pay him a SMALL sum for his time and nothing more, just to get rid of him. Small claims court is certainly an option for both of you, but his case could easily be shot full of holes. He's obviously not qualified to do it right and you don't want him on your project when his learning curve is still really steep. Ask that he leave and give him the reasons. Remember, you're the victim here, not the agressor or the guilty party. The only thing you're guilty of is not doing your research on this contractor and hiring a plumber instead of a tile pro. You're being taken advantage of...Although he may not have the intent to do so that is what is happening due to his lack of ability or knowledge of widely accepted practices for shower installations. There may be no malice on his part so I'd approach it that way. If he gets mean ask him to leave and see if he has the guts to try to sue you...Bet he doesn't even have a permit or a license to be doing side jobs in your city/county.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:53 PM   #42
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HOLY CRAP!!!

So where's the Redgard waterproofing we heard so much about? Where's any waterproofing?

My friend, those photos are of the absolute worst job I could ever imagine. I assure you I have never seen anything like that in my 33 years of tile work.

I won't beat the guy up anymore nor will I volunteer anymore information unless you ask. I gotta tell you, you need to get him out of there right now and keep him away from your project. There is no way this guy could follow any new directions you may offer him.

There is nothing correct about any of what he has done there. He claims to have many jobs under his belt but I can assure you...he does not.

By the way...that floor drain is intended to be buried in a concrete shower receptor floor of a commercial nature. That is not the style of floor drain that should be used in this case.

Take any and all of his tools he has there and put them on the front stoop and call him to come and get them.

I am so sorry this has happened.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:54 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by aumanpj View Post
Out of curiousity... Anythoughts on how long amateurish-construction like this might last before there was a significant water problem?

Water will immediately permeate the tile and grout and will slowly begin to degrade the substructure. Might take months, might take a couple years, but the water/moisture is getting through from day one.

Also, any sense for how much someone might charge to come in and fix all this for me and do it right? That is... the shower and bathroom floor? I know... hard to say and it's likely to vary greatly. Just curious as to your opinion. What would you charge to redo it right?

Not a question that we encourage here at DIY chatroom. You need to have a tile contractor or two come out and give you estimates.

Thank you.
Pretty safe to say you're well aware of the situation you're in. Seeking further opinions on how long this install will last is fine but don't seek the advice on how to do this right if you're not going to take it. I hope you're not just waiting for someone to come along and tell you it looks fine and it'll last for years.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:55 PM   #44
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Bud Cline might have to get some therapy after seeing those pics!

Take Bud's word on tile, it is credible.
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Old 07-16-2009, 11:00 PM   #45
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This new bathroom is twice as large as the original small bathroom. He removed a wall between the bathroom and adjacent closent - the shower now sits where the closet had been. He removed the old shower where the toilet now is. He Removed the old toilet and vanity and has repositioned the outlets for what will become a double vanity. All of the plumbing is "completed" but untested as of yet. He has installed a window. He has also nearly completed a very large closet.

He has received $2700.00 from me to date. $700 of that is supposed to be for the glass wall, glass door and hardware. These materials have not yet arrived. I purchased all of the other materials myself. He is supposed to receive another $2,000 when this work is completed. I had planned to give him this money last Wednesday upon our return from vacation but I came home to find what you see in the very first photo. I have not given himi any of the remaining money.

Should I ask for some of my to be returned? I have no idea what someone else will charge me to come in and redo this shower install/tile job.

There would also be the additional matter of installing our vanity, granite top, toilet, and other finishes like window and doorway framing, painting, etc.

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