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-   -   Shower floor leaking...help! (http://www.diychatroom.com/f7/shower-floor-leaking-help-46362/)

slloyd 06-10-2009 03:42 PM

Shower floor leaking...help!
 
Hi all.
Just moved into a friends house, and the upstairs shower is leaking, badly!
From the top, there is a PVC white drain, that goes down into a deep U bend, that then leads off down the walls somewhere.
We have removed the drywall (ceiling) from directly below the shower to gain access. All we can see is the bottom of the drain, and the ubend followed by the pipe disappearing into the walls.
The shower floor itself appears to have been recently re-done. Not that I am an expert in any way, but it looks pretty new.
The floor is a mosaic of fairly small non-skid tiles, approx 2" across. There does not appear to be anything other than cement or dark grey grout inbetween the tiles, and at the wall/floor joins.
Is there some kind of sealant we can apply to the grout? It does not appear to be cracked anywhere.
I have made sure that the tap fitting itself is not leaking by pouring water from a bucket directly onto the floor of the shower. (It rained downstairs from around the PVC drain).
Do we rip it all up? Or is there an easier fix?
I thought there was supposed to be some kind of catch tray under the shower floor? Am I wrong?

redline 06-10-2009 04:51 PM

Photo?
Could just be a loose drain joint.

ScottR 06-10-2009 05:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by slloyd (Post 285560)
The floor is a mosaic of fairly small non-skid tiles, approx 2" across. There does not appear to be anything other than cement or dark grey grout inbetween the tiles, and at the wall/floor joins.

The more important question is what's between the tiles and the subfloor? (I know, answering that question requires busting the floor up anyway..)

Quote:

Originally Posted by slloyd (Post 285560)
I thought there was supposed to be some kind of catch tray under the shower floor? Am I wrong?

You're right.. there should be a copper pan under the floor; then mud is laid on it, and then the tile. The drain fitting would be soldered to the pan, to prevent just the sort of thing you're describing.

There are other ways to do a tile shower (saw an episode of TOH a while back where Silva used styrofoam and a membrane to waterproof the shower), but a copper pan is the standard/best way, AFAIK.

It's possible you have a pan and the joint with the fitting failed, or it's possible it was installed improperly. Either way that floor sounds like it's going to have to come out; sealing/caulking the surface might work temporarily, but eventually the ceiling will be wet again.

Err, but to second redline, pictures would be a huge help.. I'm just guessing there and don't really know what you've got..

slloyd 06-13-2009 01:07 PM

Pictures...
 
2 Attachment(s)
Hi all, so we have established that it is NOT the grout that is leaking, it is the PVC drain itself. Unfortunately we cannot tell from where. I made a funnel and poured water directly down the drain, while keeping the floor itself dry. Only when I poured water down very fast it leaked. If only a trickle its all dry.
I'm attaching two pics, one of the shower floor/drain from the top, and another from the bottom with the drywall removed.

When it leaks, it comes out from up high, beyond where the boards are, so can't tell where exactly it's coming from.

Thanks for all the answers!

slloyd 06-13-2009 01:10 PM

A quick addition
 
You can see on the shower floor, around the drain, I have been scraping the grout, in an attempt to lift the tiles around the drain and get the drain out to inspect it.
The aim is to to as little damage as possible.
Not sure if this is the correct approach, so feel free to school me.
I'm using a grout saw and grout scraper.

Thanks again
Steve

jaros bros. 06-13-2009 02:34 PM

Try a little food coloring to determine the leak better. If you go to far you will be redoing the whole shower, which maybe needs to be redone anyway.


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