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Old 09-23-2007, 11:46 PM   #1
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


Can someone tell me if a moisture barrier is required by code behind cement backer board in a tiled shower? Everything I've read basically boils down to stating that this is mandatory.

However, currently, I'm in a disagreement with my contractor over this. He started the job without a barrier and I insisted he redo it and add a barrier. Now, he wants to charge me for the redo...

Where can I find this type info (for future reference)?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 09-24-2007, 05:06 AM   #2
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


It would help if you stated where you are from (regionally).
Codes vary by township and state.

We always install it.

In my area, it is not required by code.
In fact, I always get a surprised look when I recommend, to a client or subcontractor, that it be done.

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Old 09-24-2007, 08:58 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by AtlanticWBConst. View Post
It would help if you stated where you are from (regionally).
Codes vary by township and state.
I'm in Georgia - specifically, Dekalb county.
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Old 09-24-2007, 06:30 PM   #4
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


Contact your local Building Dept and ask them.
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Old 09-26-2007, 03:29 PM   #5
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


Can anyone tell me what IRC 2006 states w.r.t. this matter? TIA!
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Old 09-26-2007, 06:47 PM   #6
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


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Can anyone tell me what IRC 2006 states w.r.t. this matter? TIA!
You won't find any mention of the point that you are specifically seeking in the 2006 IRC.

Examples:
The closest mention of anything related to such an issue are:

1.) Section N1102.5 - Moisture Control: This covers condensation related to thermal matters (insulation). Nothing there.

2.) Section R318 - Moisture Vapor Retarders: This involves Thermal issues and ventilation. Nothing/zip.

3.) Section R319 - Protection Against Decay: Nothing listed.

4.) Section P2713 - Bathtub Enclosures: Nothing Mentioned.
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Old 09-26-2007, 06:50 PM   #7
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


FWIW: If it's not code, then your contractor has a leg to stand on, and it ends up being a preference issue for you, the client.


..... By any chance, in your profession, are you involved in some sort of "engineering"?
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Old 09-26-2007, 11:04 PM   #8
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You won't find any mention of the point that you are specifically seeking in the 2006 IRC.
Thx Atlantic! I'm not concerned about cost, etc. I want the vapor barrier regardless - I'm more concerned about right vs wrong.

...and of course, I'm an engineer - otherwise, I'd just let these contractors run rampant about the house .

What gave me away? My quest for the truth? (or the gt on my nick?)
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Old 09-29-2007, 08:53 PM   #9
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Moisture Barrier behind cement board code?


My son-in-law is an civil/electrical engineer. When I talk about installing 1/4" plywood sub-floor in the bathroom, he tells me that an engineer would use 1/4" steel sheeting and weld it to the pipes. So, I know all about you engineering types.

I would think that a moisture barrier in your climate would be a must. You can cut the humidity with a knife.


Last edited by Handyman50; 09-29-2007 at 08:56 PM.
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