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patatura 09-19-2006 12:06 PM

Leaking bathroom floor
I have a bathroom which is 6' x 6' and includes a bathtub, a sink, and a toilet. The bathroom floor is made of 4.25" x 4.25" white tiles. This floor is older than 30 years (an unknown number of years older). Every time water falls on the floor, it goes right through it into the basement, wetting its ceiling and falling on whatever happens to be under the leaking area. My landlord's solution: "Don't drop any water." Is this reasonable? Bathrooms get wet, especially a tiny bathroom where children take baths. I'm concerned about the wood structure under the tiles becoming weak from repeated leaking. Should the floor be changed or is it the nature of a floor to leak if water falls on it? If I convince my landlord to change the floor, what are the best (but not expensive) floors for a bathroom? How long should this floor last? Thanks for your help.

redline 09-19-2006 12:14 PM

How much water is getting on the floor?

Is there grout between the tiles?

Is there caulk between the tub and the floor tiles?

Least expensive flooring for a bathroom is vinyl.

dougrus 09-19-2006 12:20 PM

It is NOT normal for water to leak into the basement when you take a bath or shower.
Is the tile or grout cracked and the water is getting through that way?...or more than likely the caulk around the tub or where the tub meets the floor has failed.
Maybe the first thing to do is check those things...especially the caulking...that would be my first guess....not having seen it. If it is caulking it is a very easy fix...
I am surprised your landlord is not worried about it...If he lets the subfloor get rotted out it will be a VERY expensive fix...

SORRY REDLINE- was typing while you posted

redline 09-19-2006 12:23 PM

Are you sure that there is not a plumbing leak?

patatura 09-19-2006 12:36 PM

Thank you all. These tiles are very old and yes, grout appears to be missing between some of them. I originally thought the pumbing would be leaking, which is a real possibility. But today, I did an experiment. I intentionally dropped three six cups of water on the floor and ran downstairs. The ceiling was leaking all over. So, would that mean that regrouting could fix the problem without having to lift the flooring? Thanks.

dougrus 09-19-2006 02:26 PM

It could fix it, but I am worried what is underneath that tile. Even if some grout was missing, I wouldnt think the water would just pour into ceiling like that. There should be a layer of thinset actually proabably a mortar bed, some plywood (one or two layers) to prevent that or at least from leaking very fluidly like you described...Since you have no access to see what is going on with the plywood and the joists, its hard to say how extensive the damage is.
Your landlord, if he cares at all for his building, should pull up the floor to see how bad it is. Especailly if this has been going on for some time.

fluppeduck 12-06-2008 06:30 PM

Living with this now
Have been living with same problem for years. I have repaired my living room ceiling 3 times and still cant stop the leaking from above. I repaired the first leak in the overflow drain, then the kids dont use the curtain right and water fills up on old tiles 1941 and it comes a falling all around the ceiling agin. I am going to regrout entire bath as I have caulke perfectly in all major areas and it must be the grout.The sub floor is probably shot so may have to look at this in the future.

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