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Old 02-12-2011, 06:43 AM   #1
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


Hi,

Our bath/shower tile is in need of some cleaning, fixing, I'm not sure what.

I've been meaning to get around to it the last couple years or so but don't have a real good idea of what I'm doing so I think that is the main thing holding me back.

Looks like the last person that was messing with it was not a pro, I'm assuming the former house owner.

I can feel some of the tile are loose, like they would come off fairly easy if I tried.

I've looked around at some basic stuff online. I'm thinking I want to get some kind of tool and scrape around on all the joints, getting loose grout and whatever doesn't look good/right. Then if any of the tile feel like they are going to fall off, I guess I would want to take them off and glue them back on. Then I go over everything and put new grout in, etc.???

So that is really all I know, but I figure there is more to it than that.

I guess what i really want/need is if someone could please give me advice on exactly what tool to use, what grout/supplies, etc I will need?

Or does someone know of a tutorial or anything like that?

I'm attaching some pics.

Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!!

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-001.jpg

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-002.jpg

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-003.jpg

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-004.jpg

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-005.jpg

Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.-shower_tile-006.jpg

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Old 02-12-2011, 06:54 AM   #2
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


I know you only want to repair what is there, but I would think that with the way the tile looks, I would not be suprised if you had extensive water damage behind all that, just a hunch, but looking at that tile job it is apparent that it was not done correctly.

So, are you planning on staying in this house for a while?

If yes then you should look at doing a retile job.

If not then, I would be looking at removing the black trim at the bottom and replace that. The big box stores do sell grout scrapers with a carbide tip to get inbetween the tiles.

I am sure drummel has a small carbide bit that would accomplish the same thing, but would could damage adjacent tiles if you slipped.

Again I would be concerned for the possible damage that lies behind that tile.

Mark

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Old 02-12-2011, 07:12 AM   #3
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


I'm sorry to say--but any time that I've seen a grout in that condition---the mold was growing from behind the tile---

I believe any attempt to salvage that will fail---Sorry,Mike
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:50 AM   #4
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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I know you only want to repair what is there, but I would think that with the way the tile looks, I would not be suprised if you had extensive water damage behind all that, just a hunch, but looking at that tile job it is apparent that it was not done correctly.

So, are you planning on staying in this house for a while?

If yes then you should look at doing a retile job.

If not then, I would be looking at removing the black trim at the bottom and replace that. The big box stores do sell grout scrapers with a carbide tip to get inbetween the tiles.

I am sure drummel has a small carbide bit that would accomplish the same thing, but would could damage adjacent tiles if you slipped.

Again I would be concerned for the possible damage that lies behind that tile.

Mark

Wow. OK I'm glad I asked.

So what does extensive water damage mean?

I want to take down all the tile and put new up?

Yes, I plan on staying awhile. I want to fix it right.

What kind of possible damage are we talking about? Damage I can't fix?

Thanks.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:52 AM   #5
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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I'm sorry to say--but any time that I've seen a grout in that condition---the mold was growing from behind the tile---

I believe any attempt to salvage that will fail---Sorry,Mike
Salvage what? The tile?

You guys have me worried.

How big of a problem is this?

Thanks.
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:00 AM   #6
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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Wow. OK I'm glad I asked.

So what does extensive water damage mean?

Water damage caused by inproperly install ceramic tiles in a shower could be, structural rot in the wall, structural rot in the floor and mold formation.

I want to take down all the tile and put new up?

This is what I would recommend, trying to repair tile that far gone will not work, the problem will return in a very short duration.

Yes, I plan on staying awhile. I want to fix it right.

Thats the right attitude and you are in the right place to get the advice if needed.

What kind of possible damage are we talking about? Damage I can't fix?

Well that question is difficult to answer as we don't know you, nor your capabilities, but it is just some I would say moderate carpentry work and the tile work afterward.

Thanks.
Your adventure has begun, chin up, smile and enjoy the ride, home ownership is a wonderful learning lesson.

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Old 02-12-2011, 10:11 AM   #7
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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Your adventure has begun, chin up, smile and enjoy the ride, home ownership is a wonderful learning lesson.

Mark
OK, so I guess we are at a place where it might be bad and it might not.

I guess I'm not going to know until I get into it.

If the wall was rotting or something like that, wouldn't I be able to tell?

I'm hoping it is not that bad but I guess it is better to be prepared for the worst.

Anyway, I guess I better plan on starting soon.

What do I want to do first?

Take down the tile and see what is going on behind the wall?

What should I use to take the tile down?

I have to run out but I'll check back later.

Thanks very much for your help.
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:54 AM   #8
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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OK, so I guess we are at a place where it might be bad and it might not.

You are right, it might not be bad, but that would only mean that you caught it in time, if you proceed with fixing that tile, eventually, if not already, the damage will get worse.

I guess I'm not going to know until I get into it.

Unfortunately that is a correct statement, where is this bathroom located a second floor or above a basement or crawlspace? If above a basement or crawlspace you may be able to see evidence of water staining.

If the wall was rotting or something like that, wouldn't I be able to tell?

No, if you search this site for bathroom tile job, bathroom gut outs, you will see pictures of the typical damage that happens behind walls and under bathtubs, that is not evident until you open it up and get into it.
Tore out ALL old shower, Help redo Here is one of many posts.

I'm hoping it is not that bad but I guess it is better to be prepared for the worst.

Really even the worse ones are really not that bad, like I said earlier, it is moderate carpentry work followed by either tile or a tub surround, depending on your budget and available finances.

Anyway, I guess I better plan on starting soon.

This is true, is this the only bathroom / shower in the house?

What do I want to do first?

Develop a plan, determine whether you are going to reinstall tile or look for alternatives. Study DIY sites for tile installation if you don't already know how.

Take down the tile and see what is going on behind the wall?

Thats a good start.

What should I use to take the tile down?

Chances are you will not be able to salvage the tile, a 2-3" wide stiff scraper and a hammer.

I have to run out but I'll check back later.

Thanks very much for your help.

Any question just post them, there are alot of experts here, but sometimes you must be patient as on some days it takes awhile before anyone will respond.
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:56 AM   #9
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


That tile looks like 1950s or 60s---I believe that the wall behind that tile is rotten and will need replacing.

I could be wrong---but I doubt it---It looks like you will be pealing that area back to the studs--replacing insulation--adding cement board --and retiling the tub surround.

There are numerous posts on the subject---Try the search feature or just ask away.--Mike--
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:32 PM   #10
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


I think oh'mike is dead on, here's my appraisal FWIW.

The mold and mildew I see there is most likely also inhabiting the areas behind the tile. Mold and mildew to that degree are a health hazard.

It is very likely (most likely) the walls behind the tile are infested and damaged beyond repair.

I would plan on removing the tile and the wallboard down to the wall studs and starting from there. This isn't the end of the world and the task isn't all that hard to do. I would "gear-up" with gloves and a higher quality face mask and start taking things apart. Load the spoils into bags and get it out of there.

Once you/we know what is under that mess we can go from there.

The very first thing I would do would be to saturate that entire area with chlorine bleach, then ventilate and vacate the area immediately for a few hours. This will kill the infestation you can see but it won't kill what's behind the tile. Don't think for a minute that once you see the black has gone that you are out of the woods. Killing the surface growth is merely for your own protection during demolition.

Those cracked tiles around the valves indicates to me that the walls behind the valves are wasted. In fact I'll bet you can push on the tiles around the valve handles and see the the wall move.


If you are careful you can redo the tub surround and leave the wainscot. When removing the tile allow the bullnose tile at the corners to remain undisturbed. The walls outside of the tub area are salvageable.
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:50 PM   #11
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


I knew Mr Cline would chime in and he is exactly right, this is what Mr Cline does for a living, Nice advice Bud.

Mark
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Old 02-12-2011, 01:52 PM   #12
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.....thanks, and Mr. Cline has seen plenty of showers that look just like that one over the years. YUK!!!
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:41 PM   #13
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Any question just post them, there are alot of experts here, but sometimes you must be patient as on some days it takes awhile before anyone will respond.
The bathroom is above our basement. We have another one in the basement. Actually this one is more or less above the other one in the basement.
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:47 PM   #14
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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That tile looks like 1950s or 60s---I believe that the wall behind that tile is rotten and will need replacing.

I could be wrong---but I doubt it---It looks like you will be pealing that area back to the studs--replacing insulation--adding cement board --and retiling the tub surround.

There are numerous posts on the subject---Try the search feature or just ask away.--Mike--
Yes, the house was built in 1950 I think. So it's probably the original tile.
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Old 02-12-2011, 07:54 PM   #15
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Please give me some basic advice on fixing up my bath/shower tile.


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Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
I think oh'mike is dead on, here's my appraisal FWIW.

The mold and mildew I see there is most likely also inhabiting the areas behind the tile. Mold and mildew to that degree are a health hazard.

It is very likely (most likely) the walls behind the tile are infested and damaged beyond repair.

I would plan on removing the tile and the wallboard down to the wall studs and starting from there. This isn't the end of the world and the task isn't all that hard to do. I would "gear-up" with gloves and a higher quality face mask and start taking things apart. Load the spoils into bags and get it out of there.

Once you/we know what is under that mess we can go from there.

The very first thing I would do would be to saturate that entire area with chlorine bleach, then ventilate and vacate the area immediately for a few hours. This will kill the infestation you can see but it won't kill what's behind the tile. Don't think for a minute that once you see the black has gone that you are out of the woods. Killing the surface growth is merely for your own protection during demolition.

Those cracked tiles around the valves indicates to me that the walls behind the valves are wasted. In fact I'll bet you can push on the tiles around the valve handles and see the the wall move.


If you are careful you can redo the tub surround and leave the wainscot. When removing the tile allow the bullnose tile at the corners to remain undisturbed. The walls outside of the tub area are salvageable.
Thanks for all the advice, I really appreciate it. The cracked tile didn't happen that long ago. I forget how it happened, I think my son might have smacked it with something. Anyway, the wall behind it is solid. All of the walls are solid that I feel. Honestly, I think it is more serious than I thought with my first post this morning but I don't think it is as bad as you guys think. Definitely some mildew but I can see the grout behind it when I am close up. I used to work for a plumber (gofer), I have certainly seen a lot worse.

Anyway, I am serious about this and I am taking your advice. I like the bleach idea. I think I'll do that tomorrow. What is the best way to do that? Fill a spray bottle with clorox? Should I use a sponge or something?

I think I should have given a better description this morning. The rounded black tile around the edge of the tub (tub surround?) looks like it came loose and someone didn't do a very good job of fixing it. The first row of tile behind the tub surround that runs the length of the tub has 5 or 6 tile that feel loose when I push on them. They feel loose, like they need reglued, not like the wall is moving. Really, the white tile above the pink look almost new to me for being the original tile (if it is original). None of the tile above the first row are loose.

Anyway, I would think I should start taking out the tub surround and that first row of tile. Then if it is really bad I should be able to tell right there, right?

So I plan on using the bleach tomorrow then I guess I'll start on this next weekend hopefully. How long would you think something like this will take? I can take some days off work.

Also, if I end up taking down all the tile, I guess I have other options than putting new tile up right? I guess I could put in a fiberglass liner or something along those lines? How hard is that to do?

So I'm hoping I don't need to rip the wall out but sounds like you have seen this many times so I won't be surprised if I have to.

I guess I just need to get started then I will know.

Thanks again, I really appreciate all of the advice on this...

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