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Old 08-24-2013, 06:16 AM   #1
atm
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Bathtub Drain Leak


I recently (1 month old) did a bathroom renovation that included replacing the bath tub. After about 1 month, we discovered a leak from water dripping from a light fixture below the bathtub drain area. This occurred as we had guest at home and shower was used extensively.

I suspected that the leak would be from the bath tub drain and to confirm the leak, I applied GE silicone II caulk for kitchen/batch just around the drain to isolate the leak. So far, no water has been leaking.

What is the best way to fix this?
--------------------------------
1. I was planning to unscrew the bath tub drain and clean/recaulk with more caulk to ensure water does not leak from the drain/rescrew the drain?
The bathtub drain is metal and the piping below is ABS pipe. I applied the GE Silicone II caulk under the drain when installing/screwing the drain in.

Is it ok to unscrew the metal drain without causing more damage? I am concerned that the silicon caulk may make the unscrewing of the drain too hard and may break either the metal drain or abs piping.
What is your experience on this?


Note that the shower assembly backs to the wall of the house (i.e. I do not have access from behind a wall. Also, I will need to open drywall from main floor to have visual of the drain but trying to avoid this if i can.

2. Since its no longer leaking, should i just leave it as is?

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Old 08-24-2013, 06:33 AM   #2
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Bathtub Drain Leak


You need to fix that right----the rubber gasket under the drain is the culprit---

Unscrew the chrome drain piece---check the placement of the rubber gasket between the drain pipe and the tub bottom---then place a ring of plumbers putty around the chrome drain ring and reinstall----

There is a possibility that the drain might twist when tightening---if that causes a leak then the ceiling will need to be opened.

Most common leaks in new tub installs? The shower arm---tub over flow---mixer valve cover---tub spout ---last is the drain----have you done your trouble shooting?

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Old 08-24-2013, 09:32 AM   #3
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Bathtub Drain Leak


Thanks for the response.

At this time, I'm doing troubleshooting by process of elimination as i'm trying to avoid opening the ceiling.

Question...
When i installed the shower drain, I applied the GE Silicone II caulking around the drain. If I remove this, do you think the caulk will allow me to remove/unscrew the drain without damaging the abs below because the caulk made removal tight?

When i reinstall chrome drain piece, should i use plumbers putty or the GE Silicone II?

Thanks again...
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Old 08-24-2013, 10:45 AM   #4
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Bathtub Drain Leak


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Originally Posted by atm View Post
Thanks for the response.

At this time, I'm doing troubleshooting by process of elimination as i'm trying to avoid opening the ceiling.

Question...
When i installed the shower drain, I applied the GE Silicone II caulking around the drain. If I remove this, do you think the caulk will allow me to remove/unscrew the drain without damaging the abs below because the caulk made removal tight?

When i reinstall chrome drain piece, should i use plumbers putty or the GE Silicone II?

Thanks again...
Is this a shower drain or tub/shower drain?
If a tub, unscrew the basket. The silicone will make it a little tuff at first but once you break the seal it will come right out.
Clean off all remaining silicone you can and use putty when reassembling. Pay attention to caulk thats seeped unto the gasket- you may opt to use a new gasket
If the waste and overflow has compression joints you might develop a leak at these locations due to the tork you're applying.
If it's a solvent weld assembly -no worries.

If possible, install an access panel near the floor at the head of the tub so you can inspect the tub shoe.
You can buy nice paintable panels at the box store- very simple to install

If your dealing with a shower drain the process is about the same- minor differences.
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Old 08-24-2013, 06:21 PM   #5
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Bathtub Drain Leak


Trouble shooting-----remove the mixer cover to check the shower arm---run the shower and look in the hole----

Tub over flow----over fill the tub-----then wrap a bunch of tissue to a coat hanger wire--work that down through the mixer valve opening---to the back of the over flow--If it comes out wet---you found the trouble---
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Old 08-24-2013, 06:24 PM   #6
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Bathtub Drain Leak


Also----the real number one tub 'leak' is escaping water---are you sure that the guests did not let some water get to the floor? Shower curtain or glass door?

Is the tub level front to back?
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Old 08-24-2013, 07:48 PM   #7
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Bathtub Drain Leak


Any time I install a trap or plumbing under a fixture thats not glued I run hot water down the drain for 5-10 mins ,then go back and tighten the nuts on everything.
Once it cools back down you should have no leaks,youd be suprised how much that plastic expands during a heat cycle like that.
As far as the silicone goes,use plummers putty on the strainer like everybody else said.
Use that ge silicone on something more fitting,like a gutter!
Sorry I was really unimpressed with g.e's service panels at a young age,now I pretty much classify anything wearing their logo as unfit for use.

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