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Old 09-28-2008, 07:51 PM   #1
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Elastomeric Paint and Shower Floor

Hi all

My wife's brother has redone our bathroom shower twice. It leaks badly. I suspect it is because of the tile my wife choose. It is made of small stones (1" diameter) on a prefabricated web. Tiles are placed like any other and covered with grout.

Everytime someone takes a shower, waters makes it way down through the floor and into the bathroom below. It drips a lot for about 20 minutes. With kids nearing college, I am not keen on spending thousands having a professional redo this bathroom. So I have been thinking... admitedly I am am a skilled programmer, not a skilled handyman.

I have been reading about elastomeric paints (special water proof paints). I figure one 40$ can of clear elastomeric paint, put down three coast (with one day between applications) and I would have a non-leaking shower floor. It might not be pretty, but that just means it fits with the rest of the bathroom. We can redo it all 10 years from now.

So... can anyone give me guidence here. Is this just stupid, or will elastomeric paint actually do the job. What I read makes me think it will work well, even though this is a somewhat unusal application for the stuff.



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Old 09-28-2008, 08:10 PM   #2
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Nope, it won't work.

The tiles aren't the problem and neither is the grout. The shower pan underneath the tiles must be properly waterproofed in order to prevent water from leaking. Typically this is done with a membrane these days, but in the old days (and still occasionally) a lead or copper pan was used to contain the mud bed and direct water to the drain.

No tile and grout combination is waterproof. A good shower builder assumes that water will permeate the tiles and will take the necessary steps to direct that water to the drain.

If your shower is noticeably leaking, there's no sealer or paint that you can apply that will perform as you're hoping. Your best course of action is to rebuild the shower, unfortunately.


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Old 09-29-2008, 07:14 AM   #3
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You know there have been calculations done that show that the amount of water that flows in a typical shower is almost the same as the amount of rain water that hits the average roof. Amazing isn't it to think that there are that many gallons of water that flow inside your house as that hit it...

Now, a good roof job for a typical home can run around $10k and you expect it to last 20 years. Our average waterproof shower job runs 5k and we are also talking 20+ years of worry-free living. This is what most people are after...spending their money, a lot of it, to be free of drips.

On the other hand, some might like to live with water falling down around their ears. These people we may be unable to help. The best we can do is give advice based on years of doing this, and I will join the crowd and say that your $40 solution will not work and won't even get you a nod from the people who think that saving money in everything is a virtue.

Look, you thought you would save money having a relative do your shower. I don't know his experience - but let's just say he failed. Are you happy? Doesn't that tell you something? What goes around comes around...and now you're still on the same wagon. Get real with the situation.

If you don't want to do it right, and if you can't DIY, then at least read up on the way it should be done, here and on other forums. Then direct someone who's handy on the right way of doing it that fits your budget. But please don't think that you have discovered a secret that none of us have thought of, and that what we do is nothing more than a shell game dedicated to fleecing people of their hard-earned money.

We don't work that way and stay in business...not possible.
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