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Old 05-24-2010, 04:24 PM   #1
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Grout, caulking or both???


Help - my shower is leaking - again! It's tiled walls and unfortunately, tiled floor. I've got most of the old caulking out as well as what little grout there was. Will remove the rest of the caulk/grout tomorrow.

My question is, after letting it dry out for a week or two, when I reseal it, do I grout the floor/wall joint first, and then lightly caulk over the grout. All previous attempts have just been caulk and it will be fine for a month or two and then it's leaking again

Thanks for any suggestions - I'd really like to fix this thing for the last time.
Rick

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Old 05-24-2010, 09:36 PM   #2
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Grout, caulking or both???


You need to grout the tile then after the grout had dried for 24 hours (if memory serves) you need to get a grout and tile SEALER and follow the manufacturers directions precisely. In addition, you need to caulk all joints, such as where the wall meets the floor, in the corners, around any shower doors, etc. If you dont grout then seal the tile and grout its going to leak. If you dont caulk those joints its going to leak. Hang in there....it can be done!

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Old 05-25-2010, 05:00 AM   #3
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Grout, caulking or both???


Thanks for the information. All of the tile grout is in perfect condition and there is no indication of loose tiles do to water damage.

To confirm: my problem is right at the wall/floor joint around the perimeter of the shower. So clean out the old stuff good, let it really dry out, re-grout it and then seal over the grout - right?

Thanks again
Rick
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Old 05-25-2010, 09:49 AM   #4
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Grout, caulking or both???


I am thinking that maybe the shower pan was not done correctly because it should drain any water that gets through toward the drain weep holes. I could be wrong, just my thoughts.
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Old 05-25-2010, 03:34 PM   #5
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Grout, caulking or both???


Thanks for the information. This place is a never ending source of education.
Now, to show my stupidity - what are weep holes?

Sounds like they expect water to get through the joints somewhere and then created a method for it to actually go back into the drain - wow.

I have really hard water and when I took the cover off of the drain - there was a scaly build up around the whole inside of the pipe - could this be blocking the weep holes?
Rick
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Old 05-25-2010, 03:57 PM   #6
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yes, thats the idea, do a search on the proper way to install a shower pan, the pan is sloped to drain any water that penatrates the grout. the drains are 3 pieces and under the middle piece is weep holes. If/when water gets past the tile the sloped membrane drains the water through the weep holes. good luck, i hope you don't have to do the pan over the correct way!
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Old 05-25-2010, 04:11 PM   #7
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Grout, caulking or both???


o.k., I'll check out pan installation. However, if the job gets any more complicated than regrouting and sealing ( maybe searching for weep holes) - I'm callin' a plumber.
Thanks again
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Old 05-27-2010, 11:37 AM   #8
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Grout, caulking or both???


Quote:
Originally Posted by upinsmoke View Post
Sounds like they expect water to get through the joints somewhere and then created a method for it to actually go back into the drain - wow.
Exactly! First thing you gotta realize is tile and grout are not waterproof. Sealing tile does not make it waterproof, just easier to clean. A shower needs to be built correctly from the studs out, not just tiled.

Your problem could fall under several categories here. In the remodeling forum there is a subforum for kitchens and baths at the top of the page. Also in the flooring forum there is a subforum for tiling. I would suggest you go poke around there for similar threads. They may answer questions you didn't know you had.

It sounds like it might be time for a new shower. If so, and you want to hire it out, arm yourself with information on the proper way to build a shower. While there is more than one way to do it right, there are a whole lotta ways to do it wrong. Then you can verify whoever you hire will do it correctly, rather than risk replacing bad with worse.

Bud's blog is a good place to start.
http://www.diychatroom.com/blogs/con...wer-walls-152/

.

Last edited by Blondesense; 05-27-2010 at 11:48 AM.
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Old 05-27-2010, 11:57 AM   #9
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Grout, caulking or both???


Sounds good and I will do that but I do have one other question. I went to the hardware store today to look at shower drains to see how they went together and see what the weep holes were all about - an education in itself.

I may have scaling blocking my weep holes and was going to try and clean them out, which looks like it might be hard to do with the drain assembled. So my question is can I unscrew the top part of the drain to clean out the weep hoels w/o screwing up the bottom part of the drain? Don't want a bad situation to become worse. I would assume the pieces (threads) only have plumbers putty and were not glued??

Thanks for all of the great ideas.
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Old 05-27-2010, 12:07 PM   #10
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the bottom section attaches to the pipe then the membrane lays on top, silicone down so a hair clog don't back up under the rubber. then the piece with the weep groves is screwed down, then the strainer.
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Old 05-27-2010, 12:18 PM   #11
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Grout, caulking or both???


Rick, I'm not an expert or a plumber so I will leave that question for someone else. I'm like you, hanging around here trying to get enough information before I start tearing apart my own shower.

In your original post you say "my shower is leaking - again". If you are more specific the experts here may have specific suggestions, or at least narrow things down. Are you seeing water? Where? When? How old is the shower, etc.? Pics always help.
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Old 05-27-2010, 12:52 PM   #12
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Grout, caulking or both???


good idea for more details about the leak - the shower is on the first floor and I have a finished basement w/a drop ceiling. I noticed a tile was discolored and removed it. The leak was just a small drop at a time, but steady since we use the shower every day, and appeared to becoming from between the shower drain and the subfloor. There's no way (I know of) to tell if the leak is above or below the membrane.

My thinking at this point is that maybe the shower floor is leaking somewhere and that the weep holes are indeed clogged with scaling. Thus not allowing the leaking water to enter the drain as designed and is then leaking out around the drain.

That's my opinion - I will very happily entertain others.
The help is really appreciated.
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Old 05-27-2010, 01:31 PM   #13
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Grout, caulking or both???


By the way I'm an Electrician. Not a plumber. I have watched the Plumbers install countless shower pans in high rise condos. Thats where my information comes from.
Good Luck

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Old 05-28-2010, 12:25 PM   #14
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Grout, caulking or both???


Tiled showers seem to be an animal unto themselves. I suspect your problem is not strictly plumbing. I think a tile person experienced in building showers is your best bet if there is a solution to be found.

I would recommend either asking a moderator to move this thread to one of those other forums I mentioned, or, it they will let you get away with it, starting a thread over there and linking to this one.

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:55 PM   #15
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Grout, caulking or both???


I agree, but not yet. After further inspection with a mirror and flashlight, I'm fairly convinced that, although they aren't the cause of the problem, - my weep holes are closed up with a calcification from hard water. I'm going to attempt to attach a photo or two of the drain and the deposits in the drain.

My question is - if I remove the grout and caulking from around the drain, can I (reasonably) separate the two pieces, clean out the weep holes and then reassemble? Or is this a job best left to a pro?

Then if I'm successful at cleaning them out then I'll need a tile guy for help with the grouting and sealing on the redo. Thanks, Rick
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Last edited by upinsmoke; 05-28-2010 at 02:57 PM. Reason: added text
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