Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Remodeling > Kitchen & Bath Remodeling

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-08-2013, 08:47 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Share |
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


I have a contractor who is currently renovating my basement which includes a bathroom with a shower. Contractor says bathrooms are 'his specialty', however I've already seen things that make me very suspicious.

Personally, my intention was to build it myself and take my time doing it the way I want but since my wife needs 'the basement finished' I'm stuck with paying a contractor. To make a long story short, I've attached some photos for anyone who might want to provide some advice of what I should do at this point. Things that I'm not liking so far: drywall tape and mud on seam (personally would have used cement board tape and thinset), huge hole in board around valve, and the use of drywall screws.

I want a liquid membrane on cement board and contractor keeps trying to tell me that it's a waste. I'm at the point where I'm going to tell him tomorrow that I'm going to apply the membrane myself.

What should I do about the drywall tape and mud already applied?
Attached Thumbnails
Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns-img_20131208_131911.jpg   Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns-img_20131208_131934.jpg   Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns-img_20131208_131954.jpg   Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns-img_20131208_132015.jpg   Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns-img_20131208_132235.jpg  


escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2013, 08:29 AM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Hartfield VA
Posts: 25,570
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


You have every right to be concerned.
Your right on all points.
He needs to go!
What did he us to lay out that hole for the faucet? An egg?
The hole needed to be as big as the plaster ring it came with, and round not egg shaped.
Hold the trim ring up to see if it will even cover the hole now.
May be best to cover all of it with this to make up for his screw up.
http://www.schluter.com/1324.aspx

__________________
When posting in forums, letting us know your location will help others give better feedback/advice/solutions to your questions
joecaption is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2013, 09:07 AM   #3
Member
 
Davejss's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Northern Massachusetts
Posts: 324
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Forgive me for asking, but when did this site go from DIY to GAYC? By the way, that stands for Gripe About Your Contractor.
Davejss is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Davejss For This Useful Post:
jomama45 (12-10-2013)
Old 12-09-2013, 09:08 AM   #4
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
You have every right to be concerned.
Your right on all points.
He needs to go!
What did he us to lay out that hole for the faucet? An egg?
The hole needed to be as big as the plaster ring it came with, and round not egg shaped.
Hold the trim ring up to see if it will even cover the hole now.
May be best to cover all of it with this to make up for his screw up.
http://www.schluter.com/1324.aspx
Joe, thanks for your feedback. This is really stressfull situation for me because this contractor has an ego and I'm not a fan of confrontations. I just wish I could do this myself and be in peace.

It looks like Ray Charles cut the hole for the valve. I already held the valve trim rim over the hole and the top part of the hole isn't even covered because it's so excessively big.

I need to make the best of the situation I am in right now as the supposed completion dealine for this project is Christmas.

Do you know if it's possible/advisable to install Kerdi membrane on the walls only, or is the whole system needed? I don't even know what to think right now except be depressed. Time is ticking away.
escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2013, 09:09 AM   #5
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Quote:
Originally Posted by Davejss View Post
Forgive me for asking, but when did this site go from DIY to GAYC? By the way, that stands for Gripe About Your Contractor.
Since my intention is to 'waterproof' my shower walls myself, it'd like to think it's DIY. Am I wrong?
escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2013, 07:50 PM   #6
Member
 
firehawkmph's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Near Cleveland, Ohio
Posts: 1,571
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Escray,
Durock is not waterproof. It needs to be waterproofed. If you go the Kerdi route, everything has to be done, walls and floor. Schluter has their own drain that usually goes with their shower system. It wouldn't work for your application now since your floor is already in. I don't know that I would trust this guy to lay tile over the kerdi. At this point, I would think redguard or hydroban would be your best bet, just follow their instructions. Is there a slope to the floor, hard to see in the pictures. Your contractor sounds like one of those guys, like many, who never bother to read manufacturers' instructions. You could remove the drywall screws and replace them with the screws made for cement board. Let us know how it turns out.
Mike Hawkins
firehawkmph is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 08:46 AM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 488
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


This is just a matter of you taking the time to make things absolutely perfect or hired help trying to do things as quick as possible. It won't look as good as if you did it.

I recently did my first shower tile job this past fall. I sought the input of my cousin who has been tiling for 20+ years. He told me to skip the waterproofing also. He told me other things that went against what is being said on here. In the end i applied a few layers of Redguard just to be certain.

There are screws specifically for cement board. He must not think that drywall screws in the shower are a big deal. If no moisture ever gets back there, then I wouldn't think it would be a huge deal.

I think I know where the real problem is...but you have to live with her. ;-)

B
Beepster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 09:02 AM   #8
747
registered
 
747's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Illinois (kankakee county)
Posts: 1,330
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


The whole is bigger then i would like. Does trim plate cover it. If no. Have him yank section of durarock and redo it. Last pic on rite concerns me. Makes sure he cleans it up. Finally if you want waterproofing over cement board. Its your rite. Not concerned about tape and mud on seams.
747 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 10:20 AM   #9
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Guys, thank you very much for your input!

My gears have been turning and I think at this stage I will go with a liquid membrane. If I were doing it over from scratch I'd probably go the Kerdi route but I don't want to scrap what's there right now.

Although this contractor is skilled at certain things (I give him credit where credit is due), there is always room for improvement and since he has chosen to stop learning because he already thinks he knows it all, that is or will negatively impact his business. His choice, not mine. But what is my choice (since I'm the employer) is that I want something better than tiles directly on cement board.

As for the hole around the valve. The valve trim will not fully cover the top portion of the hole, I checked this myself. Having contractor replace that piece of cement board is a possibility but I fear he will hit the roof. It's a bad situation to be in for me because he's doing a good job at finishing the rest of my basement and I need him to actually finish it and not pack up and leave.

I am going to replace his drywall screws with cement board screws and apply a liquid membrane at the recommended thickness.

I checked the drywall mud on the seams last night and the mud is the 'soft' kind. In other words, seems like I have a chance to remove the mesh tape. I could try to peel it off and then apply cement board mesh tape with thinset. Also, about the two 90 degree corners in the shower, is thinset with mesh tape appropriate? Contractor wants to use silicone but from what I gather, liquid membrane will not stick to it. There is going to be a niche centered directly over top of the valve (it's roughed in behind what is shown in the pictures), is it appropriate to mesh tape and thinset all the 'inside' and 'outside' seams?

I forgot to add that yes, the shower floor is sloped.

Last edited by escrayzee; 12-10-2013 at 10:32 AM.
escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2013, 12:25 PM   #10
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Virginia
Posts: 334
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


A couple quick points..

Is the misshapen hole for the shower valve that big a deal? If there'a only a small section of unsupported tile overlapping the hole I'd imagine it's not a big deal..? I cut a hole for the valve and mine was misshapen as well, but no one would know otherwise and it's waterproof all the same (with the plastic sheeting behind it). I guess the concern is there's no plastic sheeting behind the durock.

The use of mastic in showers everyone will say is a big no-no but some/many people do use it (I wouldn't/don't). I hired one contractor that said he uses mastic on the walls, but only thinset on the floors. I've seen some contractors that use mastic on floors (that I would always say is wrong). Using mastic to tape the joints for durock is a bad idea because you want it solid. Mastic is a gray area, but you'll find that most say to just avoid it. Drywall screws are a no-no as they're inclined to rust over time w/ moisture, and you don't want loose durock.

Regarding the inside corners of the showers, I think it depends on how you plan on waterproofing. If you use sheeting behind the durock taping and thinset over the seams isn't necessary. If you're applying a surface waterproofing membrane, then taping and thinset over all seams is necessary. I do think applying thinset/tape on all the seams of a shower nook is a must.

I'd ask him EXACTLY how he plans to do the rest of the shower. Was he planning on using mastic for everything or thinset?

Good luck!

Last edited by NewHomeDIYGuy; 12-12-2013 at 12:30 PM.
NewHomeDIYGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2013, 02:12 PM   #11
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Quote:
Originally Posted by NewHomeDIYGuy View Post
A couple quick points..

Is the misshapen hole for the shower valve that big a deal? If there'a only a small section of unsupported tile overlapping the hole I'd imagine it's not a big deal..? I cut a hole for the valve and mine was misshapen as well, but no one would know otherwise and it's waterproof all the same (with the plastic sheeting behind it). I guess the concern is there's no plastic sheeting behind the durock.

The use of mastic in showers everyone will say is a big no-no but some/many people do use it (I wouldn't/don't). I hired one contractor that said he uses mastic on the walls, but only thinset on the floors. I've seen some contractors that use mastic on floors (that I would always say is wrong). Using mastic to tape the joints for durock is a bad idea because you want it solid. Mastic is a gray area, but you'll find that most say to just avoid it. Drywall screws are a no-no as they're inclined to rust over time w/ moisture, and you don't want loose durock.

Regarding the inside corners of the showers, I think it depends on how you plan on waterproofing. If you use sheeting behind the durock taping and thinset over the seams isn't necessary. If you're applying a surface waterproofing membrane, then taping and thinset over all seams is necessary. I do think applying thinset/tape on all the seams of a shower nook is a must.

I'd ask him EXACTLY how he plans to do the rest of the shower. Was he planning on using mastic for everything or thinset?

Good luck!
Thanks for your response!

I purposely told my contractor to not put poly sheathing behind the cement board in anticipation that I use a membrane on the front side of the board. I will be picking-up supplies this weekend which will consist of some Durock screws, cement board mesh tape and thinset for all seams, a Kerdi valve seal and either some RedGuard or some Aqua Defense.

I have no intentions at all of using mastic anywhere in my shower.

After I'm done doing my thing, the only thing left for contractor to do is install floor and wall tile which I will stress that he use a thinset that is compatible with my membrane. I haven't spoken to him yet about this but hopefully it's straight forward and doesn't turn into an argument. Thankfully the tile setter is very easy going in comparisson to the guy who installed the durock so there shouldn't be a problem.

Thanks again!
escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2013, 08:58 PM   #12
Tileguy
 
JazMan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Troy, Michigan
Posts: 3,950
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Let me add a few points and try to correct some of the wrong info that has been offered in this thread.

* Regular drywall tape & especially drywall compound should be removed. Thin set does not like to stick to drywall compound. I'll bet you can soak it and sponge it off without too much effort.

* Drywall screws are not good in wet areas, they will rust. Also note that the head is smaller and so they do not hold as well. Use the appropriate screws or you can even use roofing nails. Roofing nails = easy, cheap, readily available and they have a big head. Bad part, shakes the wall when hammering.

* I can't tell how large the holes is, but may not be a problem if the tiles are big enough to overhang the hole. The hole is usually about 5" cuz you need to gain access to the valve. The trim has a foam water shield on the back. What's the diameter, roughly?

* When the contractor claims a surface membrane is a waste, you know he doesn't know how to build a good shower.

* I'm confused about the last photo. Will there be a curb? Is there a slope? Is there a pre-slope under the shower pan?

*
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beepster
I think I know where the real problem is...but you have to live with her. ;-)
Wrong, your lovely wife is not the problem, you just want to get the work done. The problem is you probably hired a carpenter to do the remodeling and he thinks he can do the other trades too. BTW, he may not be licensed to do the tile work, and so might not be legal? What kind of license does he have?

*
Quote:
Originally Posted by escrayzee
I checked the drywall mud on the seams last night and the mud is the 'soft' kind.
You know what should be done then.

*
Quote:
Also, about the two 90 degree corners in the shower, is thinset with mesh tape appropriate? Contractor wants to use silicone
More proof that the contractor doesn't know the right way to build a shower. The idea of taping the seams is to create a monolithic substrate.

* NewHomeDIYGuy What the heck is "misshapen"? FYI, plastic or tarpaper on the studs is not waterproofing. It's a vapor retarder at best.

*
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewHomeDIYGuy
Regarding the inside corners of the showers, I think it depends on how you plan on waterproofing. If you use sheeting behind the durock taping and thinset over the seams isn't necessary.
I absolutely disagree, it's wrong. Tape & thin set is a must in all cases.

It's too bad you feel you have to teach the contractor how to do this. He needs to learn a few things. If something goes wrong after a few years, he's gonna blame your prep., you that don't you?

I hope the tile setter is a pro and knows about waterproofing and pre-slopes etc. But since you're doing all this, it appears he's a match to the other guy.

Jaz
__________________
Tile 4 You LLC Troy, MI

DITRA Installs - KERDI Watertight-Mold-Free Showers. I have NEVER made a mistake, I thought I did ONCE, but, I was WRONG! A+ BBB rating - est. 1987 - over 50 yrs. exp.

Last edited by JazMan; 12-12-2013 at 09:10 PM.
JazMan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2013, 09:51 PM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Virginia
Posts: 334
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Jazman,

I know the preferred method is surface type waterproofing but I believe plastic sheeting is acceptable as well. I guess it's a vapor barrier rather than "waterproofing." I guess I goofed when I built my last shower as I didn't tape the inside corners of the shower. Ah well live and learn. I don't think it'll make a big difference in the longevity of the shower, at least I hope not..
NewHomeDIYGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2013, 08:16 AM   #14
Newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 8
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


Jazman, I really appreciate your input! I'll comment on a the things you mentioned:

1) I have full intention of removing the drywall mesh tape and mud prior to applying the correct mesh tape and thinset. Last night I attempted to pull at the corner of the drywall mesh tape and it started to come of very easily (which is good), and after that I was just going to use a wet sponge to remove the mud. Not that exciting but it has to be done. Thankfully contractor didn't mud the corners.

2) Although I will be replacing the drywall screws with cement board screws, I knew drywall screws have no corrosion protection but the point you mentioned about their head size was news to me. Makes sense. Thanks for pointing that out.

3) The tiles going on the shower walls (including around the valve) will be 12" X 24" so they're 'big' if you want to say. I understand about needing access to the valves but since this hole is egg shaped, the top left edge of the hole doesn't get covered by the valve trim. Because the tiles are big, I'm sure they'll be sported enough. To be safe regarding water though, I'm just going to spend the $10 or whatever and get a Kerdi valve seal. I'd have to measure the hole to let you know the diameter but I'm not at home right now.

4) About contractor saying surface membrane is a waste, it really rubbed me the wrong way. Like I mentioned earlier, he said 'bathrooms are his specialty' too. To me, he has no credibility after saying that. After that I said to him "well, you get to leave and never come back after this is done so why would you really care about longevity right? Your main concern is to make the finished surface good, and that when everything underneath fails in 5-10 years you'll come back and charge me for building a new shwoer". Ha, I could tell he didn't like hearing that but tough.

5) About the last photo, there will be no curb. There will be glass from ceiling to floor. To give you a bit of history about the bathroom floor, it was un-level concrete prior to construction so the non-shower area was leveled with dry pack and the shower area was pre-sloped. The liner was put down and then it looks like sloped dry pack to me on top of the liner (which you see in the photo).

6) Contractors consist of 2 guys; 1 who framed, drywalled, etc, and the other who is a tile setter. They work together as a business. The tile setter is the only one of the two who has another job working for a company setting tiles in large areas such as high-rise condo towers in downtown Toronto. I don't know for sure but I would assume a license of some sort would be required to work in that kind of setting. I know assuming is mostly a bad thing to do so I could be wrong.

7) I am glad for the re-assurance about using thinset and tape on the corner seams, thanks.

Just to add insult to injury, although I told the tile setter 2 months ago that I chose a grid mosaic tile (about 2 cm X 2 cm squares) for the bathroom floor including the shower, he tells me just the other day that it's okay for the shower but, i'll quote him, "Not proper bathroom floor tile. Typically people don't do that. You should pick a big tile."

This is complete BS as any Google Image search will show you millions of bathrooms with mosaic tiled floors. This is about aesthetics only and I want the entire floor to be the same tile so the level floor looks uniform with the sloped hower floor. The whole space is only 5' X 10' and I don't want the bathroom to look so broken up. From the research I've done, the only 'con' about this is the extra work involved in setting these. I'm figuring he wants the path of least resistance by trying to convince me to go with big tiles so he can slap a few of them down, have less lines to grout and be done with it. He also mentioned about the difficutly transitioning with the mosiac from where the shower ends and where the level bathroom floor starts. I can't tell if that's a valid concern of if he's just making stuff up.

Last edited by escrayzee; 12-13-2013 at 02:04 PM.
escrayzee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2013, 08:14 PM   #15
Tileguy
 
JazMan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Troy, Michigan
Posts: 3,950
Default

Basement Bathroom Shower Contractor Concerns


I agree with the 7 items in your reply.

The only point I'm not clear on is #5 about the floor and how it's made. How thick is the deck mud gonna be in the shower, the transition and the bath floor?

The part about the size of the tiles on the bathroom floor should have been part of the contract. You're right that those little things are a pain in the butt to work with. It takes more time and he should be paid more if other sizes were anticipated. What was the agreement when you got the quote? Sometimes we don't mention things like that, but if you didn't mention small tiles prior to the quote, he'd have no reason to raise the issue.

Usually I get to eat the time to keep everyone happy. Only you guys know how that went.

Jaz

__________________
Tile 4 You LLC Troy, MI

DITRA Installs - KERDI Watertight-Mold-Free Showers. I have NEVER made a mistake, I thought I did ONCE, but, I was WRONG! A+ BBB rating - est. 1987 - over 50 yrs. exp.
JazMan is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bathroom addition in attic to basement drainage tmtoddsr Plumbing 3 05-16-2011 07:21 PM
Basement Bathroom Shower Addition Advice mattwilliams Plumbing 1 10-27-2010 11:06 PM
Washer Backing up into basement shower Durt Ferguson Plumbing 21 08-26-2010 09:41 AM
Mold growth in basement under shower. Need suggestions to fix leak and clean up mold vseven Plumbing 6 12-10-2009 02:33 PM
Plumbing Help for New Basement Bathroom morphers82 Plumbing 2 03-14-2009 12:17 AM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.